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Iftar Dinner in The Eymard Room at St. Paschal Baylon Catholic Church

IMG_2520On Monday, June 27th, our only event was an Iftar dinner held in the Eymard Room at the St. Paschal Baylon Catholic Church on Wilson Mills Road in Highland Heights. It was sponsored by our friend Mr. Murat Gurer from the Niagara Foundation and the Turkish Cultural Center along with Father John Thomas Lane from St. Paschal's.

We enjoyed meeting Father Lane as well as his parents, Mr. John and Ms. Joanne Lane. We learned that he had written a book titled "Guide for Celebrating Worship of Eucharist Outside of Mass" and impressed us as being a very learned man. We may talk to the First Friday Club about having him as a speaker.

We shared a table with Dr. Kevin Cummings who has recently retired and really enjoying it. We liked talking about TV shows and movies with him.

Around 8pm 40 people had arrived (including several who had attended the Iftar dinners at John Carroll and the Turkish Cultural Center) so Mr. Gurer instructed the people at each table to talk amongst themselves and get to know each other while sharing what our faiths meant to us.

We were fortunate to have seated at our table a young married couple named Mustafa and Emine who had immigrated to the United States from Turkey about 8 months ago. They both subscribed to the beautiful practice of "Hizmet" that imparts the philosophy of helping oneself by helping others and one of the best ways of doing this is to be the best that you can be in your field. Another point of discussion was the increasingly tumultuous political climate of Turkey; to be sure, both Mustafa and Emine are glad to be here in the United States at this time.

Before dinner we had a brief program wherein Professor Zeki Saritoprak from John Carroll University talked about Ramadan and Father Lane talked about Lent so that we, the attendees, could grasp the similarities. Even though we have recently been to several Iftar dinners, we still learn something each time.

For instance, on this occasion, we learned a few things about Lent that we didn't know before such as Wendy's (the fast food establishment) initiating their fish sandwich because of Lent. In fact, at first Wendy's fish sandwich was only available during Lent but several years ago they decided to sell it all year round. Moreover, we learned that Lent just might have been the reason that we were served fish sticks on Friday in the school cafeteria when we were in grade school.


Michael Patterson 

Community Liaison,

Margaret W. Wong & Assoc. Co., LLC

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