Sunday, November 24, 2013

St. Gianna Molla Shrine Dinner

I had the awesome opportunity to be the photographer for another wonderful fundraising dinner this past weekend.  Our parish is out to build a national shrine to St. Gianna Molla on our parish property.  The shrine will feature a beautiful life-size statue of Gianna and the oldest three children.  It will be a pro-life shrine and a place of peace and healing for those who have lost children or are suffering from a past abortion.

The dinner was held in our wonderfully transformed and beautifully decorated parish hall.
We've never done a formal sit-down dinner before, so a lot of planning and help went in to pulling this off.  Fortunately, we have a master chef and a restaurant owner as parishioners so that was a major help.

My hubby got to be a waiter and had a great time doing it.  Lookin' good :)

Drew Mariani from Relevant Radio gave the keynote address and he did a great job.  He talked about prayer and how we need to have complete faith and trust in Him.  He's had some awesome experiences and told a lot of interesting stories.

As I said, we haven't ever done anything like this before, so the task of feeding 200 people with a non-professional wait staff in a timely fashion was a bit daunting.  Everyone did a great job and, other than one minor incident, everything went off without a hitch.

Here's the chef torching the dessert.  I just love his devious little grin!  I am so bummed that there wasn't any of this creme brulee left over because it is one of my favorites and boy did it look delicious. 

The artist who designed and is making our statue came down from Canada to be with us.  He gave an interesting talk on why he designed it the way he did.  You can see part of it on the screen in the background and in the foreground, he is holding a print he did of St. Gianna that was getting auctioned off. 

One of the highlights of the evening had to be when our pastor got up on stage to auction off a dinner he and the other two priests from our parish will be bringing to the lucky winner's home.  They aren't cooking this Mexican fiesta, but they are bringing it, serving it and providing the entertainment.  They got a pretty good price for it, too!

It was a great night and I'm pretty sure they did a good job raising money for the project.  If you'd like more information about the shrine, or maybe even would like to donate to it, you can go here.

I am so grateful to have opportunities like this.  It is so fun to be able to take so many pictures and rub elbows with important people!  I thank God for this gift that He has given me and hope to continue to use my talents in His service.

God Bless!