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Omaha parish serves Fourth of July picnic

For a 10th straight year, members of Holy Cross Parish in Omaha and other volunteers spent part of their Fourth of July helping people at Douglas County Health Center and their families enjoy the holiday.
 
They made and served a picnic lunch with brats and hot dogs, baked beans and macaroni salad, watermelon and dessert for about 450 people at the nearby, long-term skilled nursing care and short-term physical rehabilitation facility. The event included a clown, face painting, games and prizes.
 
“We want to give residents a good holiday and let them know we love them,” said Theresa McLaury, pastoral minister at the parish, who began and coordinates the event. “These people deserve the very best – they’re part of our family, our community.” 
 
This year, about 15 parishioners, friends and family, and 13 seminarians from the Institute for Priestly Formation’s summer program helped prepare and serve the meal.
 
“Once you volunteer, you tend to return every year,” McLaury said. “You just have to because you love it so much.”
 
And Father Timothy Forgét, once associate pastor of Holy Cross and now pastor of St. Jane Frances de Chantal Parish in Randolph and St. Mary of the Seven Dolors Parish in Osmond, returned once again to run the cotton candy machine, she said.
 
The picnic is just one way the parish helps the health center. Throughout the year, priests at the parish celebrate Mass and volunteers help with games and entertainment.

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