July 21, 2017


Holy Eucharist Parish loves a celebration, so its not difficult to find a reason… Some or all of the parishioners and guests that come to the daily Divine Liturgy will usually go out for a breakfast or a coffee & muffin at a local café in the area. Ar one time they went often to “The Thirsty Duck” Restaurant – which everyone affectionately refers to as “the Katchka” (the Ukrainian word for duck). However, now they save the Katchka for Saturdays and special occasions when they can spend a bit more time over a full breakfast. More often than not, they now gather at the McDonald’s on Henderson where the staff already knows them for a coffee and fresh muffin.

       These informal gatherings often serve as an occasion to celebrate someone’s birthday or anniversary. The group will usually join together in singing a heartfelt, albeit low-decibel, ‘Mnohaya lita!’ or ‘Happy Birthday’.

       The event almost invariably includes a Divine Liturgy being offered at church for the person(s) in question and then the suggestion… “Hey, does everyone want to go for a coffee? Let’s meet at ….”

       In July (so far) there have been a few events that just called for a celebration. One was a Liturgy offered for Deacon Victor Humniski, another for Fr. Djura Maljik and parishioner Eileen Kasian who had their birthdays on the same day. And then Deacon Myroslaw Tracz who was celebrating 48 years of ministry as a deacon.

       Deacon Victor and his wife Mary attended the Divine Liturgy for Deacon on his July 12 birthday and, of course, they were invited to the local McDonald’s for a get-together. A surprise was when Macenko Choir director Walter Zulak, in a gesture reminiscent of Dean Martin at the Sands back in the day, came over to the table, greeted the birthday boy and led everyone in the Mnohaya Lita!

       Then due to the busy schedule in the parish, Fr. Maljik’s and Eileen’s birthday commemoration was delayed a couple of days. However, some ladies in the parish prepared a brunch in the parish auditorium for everyone. After the Liturgy, everyone just came down to a unexpected spread of great food and coffee.

      Then the daily Liturgy attenders wanted to do something special for Deacon Myroslaw Tracz who has been a great help and blessing in the parish over the last years. After the Divine Liturgy, they all went to Smitty’s on Regent. A number of brother clergy joined for the event… Fr. Djura Maljik, Fr. Edward Kwiatkowski, Fr. Andrew Wach, Fr. Michael Kwiatkowski and Monsignor Michael Buyachok. In fact… Monsignor Buyachok was ordained at same time as Deacon Tracz. The late Fr. Gregory Harry Oliynek was also ordained together with them.

       These frequent, even daily gatherings, offer an occasion for common prayer, discussion about pastoral and spiritual concerns in the parish and in the Church… as well as local politics and social trends. But, above all, they offer an opportunity for Communion with our Lord and fellowship with brothers and sisters as we all strive to successfully make the journey throught life together…  

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