2009-01-30 / Sports

Busy Holiday Season For St. Camillus Special Athletes

On Sunday, December 14, at the 10:30 a.m. mass, the St. Camillus Special Olympics/Rockaway Beach Special Athletes devoutly participated in a special way.

Father Dunne was the celebrant and since he knows the athletes personally, it was a particularly prayerful, family liturgy. Mary Kate Gorry sang the opening hymn as the altar servers, Joseph Orban and Denise Kiernan, proceeded toward the altar for the beginning of the mass.

Prayers of the Faithful were read by Emily Hutton, Paul Fitzpatrick and Tommy Ryan. The Offertory gifts were brought to Father Dunne by Eddie Gilmartin, Amanda Seward, Aileen Mongelli and Leanise Salas. The collection basket was brought to the altar by Timothy Mullally and Brian Moriarty.

On Thursday, December 11, the athletes and family members enjoyed a rhapsodic Christmas concert at St. Patrick's Cathedral. It was an inspiring, peaceful and spiritual respite in the holiday excitement. Thanks go to Jim McVeigh for arranging the invitation.

All of Rockaway knows the man some call, "that guy with the million dollar smile and a heart of gold," Joe Mure.

He had a very special lighting of the Little North Pole just for the St. Camillus Special Athletes.

The lights were lit after a count-down. There was music and singing by Andrew Kenna, hot food, cider and hot cocoa, cartoon characters and many smiles. On December 22, the Special Athletes had its Christmas party at the Yacht Club. All the athletes were presented with gifts from Santa (John Hamilton). All were again treated to delicious food. There was guitar playing and singing by Brian Monaghan. The athletes borrowed the mike to sing Christmas carols. It was a great evening.

The athletes and their families are very grateful to Father Ahlemeyer and Father Dunne for the use of the St. Camillus gym for over twelve years. The special athletes thank the wonderful Rockaway community for its continuous support.

On Monday evening, it is back to the St. Camillus gym to work off the holiday feasting.

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