Stop by St. Anthony’s on Halloween

HalloweenDear Parishioners,
Last year at this time, we were days away from Hurricane Sandy wreaking havoc along the Eastern coast. Power outages. Flooding. Destruction of homes and property. A year later and most have been able to rebuild and move on. You might remember, too, that she also wiped the celebration of Halloween off the map for us. (I’m not even going to comment on that miserable attempt at a “make up” date on November 10th.This year, a welcome sign of a return to normalcy will be the sights and sounds of trick-or-treaters making their rounds on Thursday night. Just in case you’re new on the block, let me fill you in on a little Halloween tradition around here. A hundred years ago, when I first moved to St. Anthony’s, I had high hopes for Halloween night, a favorite of mine. I invited a few friends over, had a major stash of candy and waited for the doorbell to ring. Four kids. All night, four kids. Like someone in a Margaret Mitchell novel, I swore never again, never again, will only four trick-or-treaters ring the doorbell at 149 South Pine. So every year I make a pitch; I make a plea. Shamelessly, I get word to the Religious Education catechists to encourage and remind their classes. Unabashedly, I speak up especially after the 10am Mass. Let’s break the record! And, pretty much, every year we do. By 2011, we were up to nearly 250 kids…but I am sure we can do better. Anyone who shows up in costume is counted. (Separate count sheet for adults and canines….this challenge has become quite interesting!) For extra incentive, full-sized candy bars are distrib- uted…which are great assets to have on your side of the table for those post-Halloween candy trading summits. So make my Halloween and stop by the front door of the rectory. Bring friends! May all those vampires and princesses and goblins and robots bring a touch of normal back to all of us…..

Father John