Mid-summer Parish Update

Upcoming events, recap of spring and early summer celebrations.

Share PDF files of this newsletter and profile stories when visiting Holy Cross's homebound members. Download and print: Midsummer Parish Update | Profile: Deidre T. Guion Peoples | Profile: Oderah Udemadu ... and check out the slide show at the bottom of this blog post.


Friday, July 27, 6 p.m. | Farewell Dinner for Fr. Andy

Fr. Andrew Santamauro, OFM, Conv.Our pastor, Fr. Andy Santamauro, is leaving at the end of the month for a new assignment on the East Coast.

Join the parish in a send-off supper on Friday, July 27, beginning at 6 p.m. While registration is not required, it will help those planning for this event. Click here to register. Contact Betty Blackmon or Yvonne Fisher for more information.

Our new pastor will be Fr. Bart A. Karwacki OFM Conv., also from the Conventual Franciscan Friars of Our Lady of the Angels Province. His previous assignment was at Our Lady of Perpetual Help, in Seaside Heights, N.J.


While some may consider the summer months a time to slow down and take life easy, that’s not totally the case at Holy Cross, where parishioners continue in various ministries year ‘round. Why? Because despite what Ella Fitzgerald and many others have sung over the years, the ‘livin’ isn’t easy for everyone, in the summertime or any season. So, don’t let the heat wilt your commitment to make a difference. Ministries of service and mercy continue, throughout the year. Check out the following opportunities to get involved. 

Now through Aug. 12 | School Supply Drive

Holy Cross is again participating in the Crayson2Calculators (C2C) School Supplies drive. Donating to C2C serves the educational and creative needs of students in Durham Public Schools by providing free school supplies to classroom teachers. Teachers report that they spend on average $1000 of their own money to supply their classrooms each year. Help fill the bins located in the gathering space at Holy Cross with the following supplies.

  • Dry erase markers
  • Clip boards
  • Boxed sets of color markers, mechanical pencils, colored pencils, #2 pencils and Sharpies
  • Construction paper and tape (clear, masking, and duct)
  • Tissues and bottles of hand sanitizer
  • Student and adult scissors

July 27 | Diocese of Raleigh Pitch in for Charities Night at the Durham Bulls.

Come hungry, because it’s Food Truck Friday with the Bulls. View details here

Save the Dates:

August 20 and 21; November 5 and 6 | Families Moving Forward. Holy Cross is one of the area churches providing volunteer support for this ministry that helps families in their transition from homelessness. Volunteers share a meal and provide childcare while the parents attend workshops to help them in their transition. Contact Elizabeth Deshaies, our parish’s volunteer contact, by email for details and to sign up to volunteer in August and November. She is also seeking volunteers to fill in at planning meetings when she is not available.

September 9, 1-3:30 p.m. | “Doing God’s Work in Love,” a luncheon and presentation launching the Holy Cross’s Justice Peace and Human Development Commission’s (JPHD) 2018-19 Season. Fr. Michael Lasky, OFM Conv., chairman of the Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation Commission for the Our Lady of the Angels Province, will be speaking. Details about this event. Learn more about JPHCC at Holy Cross and read its latest report here.

Third Saturdays, 9 a.m. - 12 p.m. | Quilting Ministry. After a brief summer break, the Holy Cross quilters are back at their sewing machines in the Holy Cross Multipurpose Room. Quilts are created from recycled and new fabric and jeans. Stop by in August to see how it’s done, and to join in this fun ministry. Lead quilters Cherrie Siewert and Lori Crump will show you how it’s done. Questions? Call them at 919-381-0699 (Cherrie) or 919-490-6861 (Lori). All are welcome. The quilts are donated to those in need in the community.

Tuesdays, 5:30-7:00 p.m. | Garden Ministry. The garden has yielded over 200 pounds of produce so far this year. All are welcome to stop by Tuesday evenings to help harvest, wash and pack the produce for delivery Wednesday morning to Catholic Charities in Durham. Volunteers are always welcome to help with weeding. The garden is in the parish’s ‘back yard.’ If you know a weed from a pepper or tomato plant, you're welcome to stop by and pull a few when you need to work out some angst or extra energy. Not sure about the plant/weed distinction? Contact Deacon Phil or Anna Rzewnicki. They'll be glad to help.

In the Community

Check out news and opportunities at the Diocese of Raleigh’s Catholic Charities website.

Holy Cross Joins Durham Congregations in Action (DCIA)

Holy Cross is now a member of DCIA, with Ava Thompson, coordinator of our Justice, Peace, and Human Development Commission, serving as our liaison. Holy Cross has long been involved with several ministries that are part of DCIA, including Families Moving Forward (formerly Interfaith Hospitality Network) and Urban Ministries of Durham (recipient of meals provided by our Casserole Ministry).

DCIA’s mission is to bring together congregations to promote understanding across boundaries of faith, race and ethnicity, and to build an inclusive community of justice and peace. At DCIA’s June 19 meeting, Ava Thompson was among the members who voted to approve a resolution calling for federal government to stop zero-tolerance” detention of immigrants. You can read the resolution here and download the Church World Service Interfaith Toolkit to Stop Family Separation and Keep Families Together 

About DCIA

DCIA was established in 1969, when four congregations in downtown Durham organized the Inner-City Church Council to address together needs for transportation and visitation for the elderly, and soon also started programs for children and youth,” as stated on the DCIA website.

The organization “incorporated in 1972, and during the next six years, membership grew to 12 congregations. In 1976, the group’s name changed to Durham Congregations In Action. Membership continued to grow and now includes dozens of congregations of Christians, Jews, Muslims, and others cooperating together in service. Over the next three decades, DCIA “built a history of initiating cooperative programs among people of faith to address unmet community needs and put belief into action against poverty, racism and violence. Read more about DCIA and programs it has launched or co-sponsored in Durham.


Read about our 2018 high school graduates and parish scholarship recipients

Read also about one of our continuing college students, Oderah Odemadu, and his summer internship that is introducing him to the world of cancer research. 

Students are not the only ones being recognized by their academic institutions. Read about Holy Cross parishioner (and choir member) Deidre T. Guion Peoples, Ph.D., a professor of marketing in the Department of Business Management at N.C. Central University.


The following slideshow captures special moments from recent events, with photos by Renee Nixon and Anna Rzewnicki.

Mothers of the Parish: The Holy Cross Men’s Society presented an amazing Mothers’ Day brunch, with a reading of cards and messages – including one delivered in song – from sons to mothers, starting with a message by Don Baker, to Annette Baker, to the most senior mother present.

Fathers of the Parish: The Altar Society, in turn, marked Father’s Day with a special celebration on June 17, including opportunities to test their perception, including looking deep within an image, to see if they could find hidden images.

Holy Cross Garden Party: The parish's Sharing Garden team members hosted Saturday evening and Sunday receptions after Mass, then invited parishioners to take a walk through the garden. A power outage Saturday evening led to cooking and dining by candlelight; power was restored prior to Sunday Mass. 


Eighth Annual Holy Cross Caribbean Mass: Celebrated by Fr. Andy Santamauro, O.F.M., Conv., with guest homilist Rev. Mr. Lennison Alexander, Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church, Diocese of Atlanta, Ga. Mass was followed by a ‘Taste of the Caribbean’ reception. Among Holy Cross parishioners celebrating their Caribbean heritage were

  • Clara Lavelle, from Antigua;
  • Valentina Byrd and Elizabeth Lake, Belize;
  • Zita Bowal, Zita Bowal; Ricardo Richardson, Haiti;
  • Rosamond Hylton, Jamaica;
  • Sid Myers and Yvette Nurse-Parrish, Panama;
  • Violet Duport, St. Kitts;
  • Winston Parris, St. Lucia; and
  • the following from Trinidad: Lisa Arthur, Giselle Corbie-Smith, Angela Dubois, Judy Smith-Gill, Gemma Harris, and Mary-Ann Weston.


Tags: Dinner for Fr. Andy, school supply drive, Crayons2Calculators, Doing God’s Work in Love, Families Moving Forward, Service Opportunities, Durham Bulls Game, Quilting Ministry, Garden Ministry, Durham Congregations in Action, DCIA


There are no comments for this post.

Add a comment

Will not be shared.
Add Comment

Parish News Blog

Updates and details regarding Bulletin items and current news and events. View the parish e-newsletter for additional news and updates. Read More


COVID-19 Mobile Vaccination Clinic at Holy Cross

Thursday, July 22, 2021
           Holy Cross Catholic Church is hosting a mobile COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic, in collaboration with UNC... Read More

Deacon's Corner | St. Mary Magdalene: July 22

Thursday, July 22, 2021
Mary Magdalene was one of the original Galilean disciples of Jesus and one of the many women who followed him in his itinerant ministry. Little can... Read More

Online Giving

Online Giving

Secure and Convenient Donate now!