By Alison Bradish
The family dance is making a comeback at a parish in Moose Jaw and it is proving to be a big win in many ways.
The idea emerged as a group of friends, all of them busy moms, asked themselves how often kids get experience a dance aside from the occasional wedding. The discussion grew into how a community dance could be an opportunity to raise funds for the church’s renovation campaign. The result was an event that was fun, built up the community and created bonds of lasting friendship between the organizers.
“For me the reason I love the dance is to create community and fellowship” says Kathleen Lazurko, who along with Logan Anderson, Michelle Dodd, Joleen Lichtenwald and Kate Yasinski helped organize the event.
“If I wouldn’t have put myself out there when I first moved here (to Moose Jaw) in activities at the Church then I feel like I wouldn’t have the friends that I do know. To live out the faith I feel like it’s really important to have friends that support you in that. The dance is just one other way to meet other people in a relaxing environment and hopefully draw them even to the building itself,” adds Lazurko.
It is this informal setting that organizer Kate Yasinski senses people appreciate, “I think they are attracted to the idea of a safe, fun, place they can be with their families.” She says that the dance gives people a chance to be around other families and to realize they may have common interests with others.
“Hopefully that community [we are building] will end up meeting at church once a week, visiting after church or having people over for brunch or something like that…we are inviting people who don’t attend church regularly. If they are seeing that we have happy, healthy, sociable and personable people in church, maybe they will be drawn towards that and want to attend church more regularly,” adds Yasinski. She says the main reason she is part of planning the dance is for her children to expand their friendships as well, as it gives them the opportunity to be around children from other schools with like minded families.
The first family dance the group of friends organized was last year. The event was a great success bringing in over $1, 500 for the church renovation fund. This year $2,262 was raised and tickets sold out days before the event.
“We purposely chose a September dance so it would have a ‘back to school’ welcoming feel. We host it at the end of the month to give ourselves time to connect with people and sell tickets. It’s a great way for families who are new to the community to meet people. I’ve found myself approaching the parents of new students in my children’s classrooms. Even if they can’t make it, that initial invite can lead to new relationships,” explains Lichtenwald.
Organizing the dance also created a stronger bond of friendship between the five women.
“For me being involved in the planning was about my relationship with my community, my friends and family, and Christ himself. When I was first approached last year to help, my first instinct was to say no-it’s out of my comfort zone, I’m introverted and I wouldn’t be much help (so I thought), I’m too busy, etc. I chose to say yes-I realized with every relationship in our life, it takes work and effort to have a healthy relationship. It I want to have a relationship with the church community and want it to flourish, I need to put effort into that just like other relationships in my life,” says Lazurko.
The group of friends is hoping to make the Community Dance an annual event at St. Joseph’s. This year’s dance ran from 6 to 9 p.m. September 27th and included a canteen, cash bar and pizza by the slice.
Alison Bradish lives in Moose Jaw with her husband and two children. They attend St. Joseph’s Parish. She earned Bachelor of Arts in Journalism at the University of Regina. She is naturally curious about local and world events. She writes from her home where she strives to bloom where she is planted. She often feels pulled to the topics of religion, education and politics.
Page URL: http://archregina.sk.ca/news/2019/10/08/st-josephs-dance-packs-moose-jaw-parish