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A Blessing of Pets will take place on Sunday, October 2. The blessing will be given on the lawn of Our Lady, Queen of Peace Parish at 4:30 p.m.; and on the lawn of Saint James Parish at 5:30 p.m. Well-behaved dogs, cats, fish, birds and all God’s creatures are invited with their owners. The blessing will be given in Commemoration of the upcoming Memorial of Saint Francis of Assisi. Animals trusted Saint Francis and he treated them with respect. Near the end of his life Saint Francis composed a song of praise and thanks to God for all God’s creations, called “Canticle to Brother Sun” – also known as the “Canticle of the Creatures.” From this song we know that Saint Francis did not perceive himself isolated from other creatures. He simply assumed that all creatures – not only humans – form one family of creation. So we are encouraged to bless and praise God with cats, dogs, birds and all God’s creatures.

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Toddlers through 5th grade children [as well as their family members and friends] in our partner parishes are invited to this event on the lawn and in the activities center of Saint James Parish on Sunday, October 16, beginning at 2 p.m. The event will include pony rides, a hay ride, pumpkin painting, a campfire with smores and pizza mountain pies, games, a craft, and much more. Although there is no cost, reservations are due [via the collection basket, U.S. Mail, or parish office in Apollo] by Monday, October 10.

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Our partner parishes are holding a Steelers vs. Bills tailgate party in the Saint James activities center on Sunday, October 9. The event is for adults and children. Food will be served beginning at 12:30 p.m. The kickoff is at 1 p.m. Hotdogs, kielbasa and sauerkraut, soft pretzels, nachos and cheese, popcorn, soft drinks, and beer will be provided. We will watch the game on a big screen. Throughout the game we will be selling chances on a 50/50 raffle, as well as on a Steelers theme basket. All participants are invited to bring a Terrible Towel, as well as wear black and gold or a Steelers jersey. Although there is no cost, a donation box will be available to accept contributions to offset the expenses. If you will be joining us, please call the parish office in Apollo so that we will have an accurate headcount.

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Members and friends of our partner parishes are invited to this event at Patrick’s Pub [205 1st Street in Apollo] on Monday, November 7, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Participants will receive step-by-step instructions with an experienced local artist as they create a winter scene and snowman. Following the evening of camaraderie and fun, you will depart with your own one-of-a-kind masterpiece! The cost is $25 per person which includes all materials. Participants are responsible for their own beverages. Registrations are limited to the first 25 people. To sign-up, contact the parish office in Apollo byMonday morning, October 31.

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All young adults of Our Lady, Queen of Peace and Saint James Parishes, as well as their friends, are invited to this new parish program at Allusion Brewing Co. on 134 Grant Avenue in Vandergrift on Wednesday, October 12, from 7 to 8 p.m. The speaker will be Brian Besong, and the topic is: “Don’t Lie to Save Your Life: An explanation of the Tradition.” The format is a 20 minute presentation, 20 minute socializing, and 20 minute question/answer. All participants are responsible for their own beverages.