Saints John & Paul Parish celebrates Special needs Sunday
Sunday , October 17, 2021 Was Special Needs Day at Sts John and Paul Parish in Wexford, Pa. The event has been sponsored by Drs.’ Michael & Kathy Lamb for years at this parish and this year , they asked Brother Andres Cafe to provide the refreshments. This is something that that Fr. Jay Donahue has be waiting to celebrate for quite sometime now .
I live very close this beautiful church and my family and I were honored to be present for the festivities. They dedicated the three morning masses for special needs people that day. They also asked our own Patrick Fitzgerald to recite the Hail Mary in front of the congregation before the departing blessing by Fr. Mike Roche.
This meant a lot to me as a person with special needs. . I think it’s important to spread awareness about special needs. The main reason is that most people discount the worth of a special needs person. For this reason, it was nice for people to come by and see us in action and see how much fun we have while we work in our own specialty areas.
My family and I went to 11am mass there that day. At the end of the mass, the priest explained [paraphrased] that . “…people who have special needs just want to be like everyone else and we should include and celebrate them…”
I totally agree with that! I think everyone deserves to be recognized whether they have a disability or not!!!
After mass ended we all went over to the building next door because our Brother Andre’s team had created a pop up coffee shop there. A pop up coffee shop is when a coffee shop serves coffee and treats in a location that’s not it’s typical spot.
The Brother Andre’s team gathered in the church hall where there were several tables set up. ( Patrick, Kevin, Morgan, Danny and I were there …Michael, Shay , Jonathan and Tim couldn’t make it )
The employees gave out our wonderful cookies - Patrick’s classic Chocolate Chip as well as Snicker doodles, delicious coffee and scones too!
In addition to giving away cookies, we were also selling our merchandise. Brother Andre’s sells clothing, vases, coffee cups, candles and other sweet items. Terri Fitzgerald, Patrick’s mom, as always is so helpful and she helps Patrick bake our delicious cookies every day… Ree Mitra, Director at the café, was truly moved by the local parishioners at the church with special needs as they felt so welcomed and celebrated !… Some of them even jumped behind the counters to help Volunteer because they were so happy!
There was a crowd of people there from the parish. I chatted with everyone who came by. I enjoyed telling them all about Brother Andre’s. People were just laughing and having a great time & there were even tables of private prayer groups going on… It was filled with so much beautiful love and energy in Christ !
This was a new thing that Brother Andre’s tried. I think a pop up coffee shop is something that Brother Andre’s could do more often. That could really help spread the word about this wonderful place!!
Thanks to the whole Sts. John & Paul team that allowed this event to take place ! We are truly grateful!