We were relatively lucky in this area that the storm only brought lots of rain and some strong wind gusts throughout the night and day on Monday/Tuesday, but we did not lose power, and except for some tree branches down and localized flooding, we escaped the worst of the storm. About forty minutes drive to the East and South of my location they had rain, snow and ice (my sister kept me informed). A little further to the South in West Virginia they were buried in snow and drifts. Two of our Southwestern Pennsylvania counties, I saw, had about 1,500 homes without power, but compared to the millions elsewhere, we were truly fortunate. Keep everyone in your prayers, and if you can lend support in any way, please do so.
Yesterday, October 30th, marked the fourth anniversary of my arrival at Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton parish. These past four years have flown by, and I am truly blessed in this assignment. I count my blessings every day! For some reason, October saw two moves in my life. In addition to moving to North Huntingdon in 2008, in 1986 I moved to All Saints in Masontown on October 28th, the feast of Saints Simon and Jude. Our school principal at the time who has since gone to heaven, Sister Mildred Minosky, a Vincentian Sister of Charity, often remarked that with Saint Jude being the patron of hopeless cases, she was confused as to who the hopeless case in this situation was - the parish? or me? I assured her that is was ME! We often laughed at the joke.
Today is All Hallows' Eve, or Halloween. It is a day of fun for youngsters of every age. Dressing up in costumes and going "trick or treating" in its harmless form is fun. Obviously some get carried away, and some of the costumes are over the top, but if approached in the correct way, it is a fun time. The local community parade was last Saturday, and as I was driving through town, I saw a family whose little boy was dressed in a great cowboy costume (reminded me of Woody or Howdy Doody) and the little girl was dressed like a ballerina. It sure beats the scary creatures and vampires that we too often see. I know that in a couple of the schools that I have been associated with, the Halloween gathering involved dressing as one of those you admire - a saint or policeman or nurse, or priest?, etc. Our local "trick or treat" night was to be tonight, but because of the storm was moved to this Saturday (during our Mass time - I guess I'll have to eat the candy and treats!). To those celebrating today, a safe and happy All Hallows' Eve!