Cleansing Fire

Defending Truth and Tradition in the Roman Catholic Church

Oktoberfest For A Cause

September 20th, 2011, Promulgated by Bernie

St. Peter's Chapel, Borneo (Malaysia). Father vests out of his little red car.

I have been a member of the Knights of Columbus, Saint Damien of Molokai Council 11411 for eight years.

This is the same Knights of Columbus Council that has been sponsoring the Rosary for Priestly Vocations in the diocese of Rochester for several years. The rosary evenings have been held in various locations of the diocese but mostly in the city and suburbs. Most of you who follow Cleansing Fire will remember the beautiful Vocations Rosary (here and here) held at St. Thomas the Apostle Church in Irondequoit last November. Another one was just held at St. John Fisher College.

This same Council –the Council I belong to— is doing an Oktoberfest evening on Saturday, October 1 to benefit a church in Borneo (Malaysia) that is administered by Father Peter Abas, who is also a member of the St. Damien of Molokai Council. He joined the Knights while he was studying at the University of Rochester just a short while back. While working toward his PhD he ministered at St. Anne Church in Rochester and was known for his work with the elderly. After getting his degree he stayed for a while and ministered at Guardian Angels Church in Henrietta, the Mercy Mother House, and St. Salome’s in Irondequoit. He was in residence at St. Cecilia’s while in Irondequoit.

Masses are packed.

St. Peter’s Chapel in Borneo needs a new church building and that is why the Knights are holding a benefit, to help raise funds for the construction. The Chapel is part of a four church cluster that Father Peter administers. The congregations of all four are rather large –bursting at the seams. St. Peter’s Chapel has a tin roof and concrete walls and floor. The congregation needs a larger building. In addition, it is time for a beautiful church. Borneo, however, is not a wealthy country.

The cleared, raised land is ready for a new church building.

The Knights hope that by raising funds the members of St. Peter Chapel will not only be helped materially but also spiritually by experiencing the love and concern for them of the wider Catholic Church –especially that part of the wider Church represented by Council 11411 in Rochester, New York. Catholics are a minority in Borneo, surrounded for the most part by the followers of Islam. At times, the relationship between the two groups is strained. It turned violent for a period a year or so ago with several Catholic churches suffering serious vandalism. The Catholics of Borneo appreciate our material support as well as our prayers for their welfare.

It promises to be a high quality and fun Oktoberfest with, as you might expect, everything German: a buffet of rouladen, pork roast with stuffing, assorted sausages, German potatoes, sauerkraut (of course) and red cabbage by a Rochester German market and deli, Music by a well known accordionist in the German community and dance performances by Schuhplattler Verein Heidengold. Dessert will be caramel Dutch apple pie, donated by the Genesee Bakery on Mt. Hope Avenue, and whose owner is also a Knight.

The evening begins at 6:15 p.m. with beer, wine, and soft drinks available for purchase; free pretzels at the tables. The buffet starts at 7:00 p.m. There will be music and dancing throughout the evening beginning at 6:15.

What a fun way to support the folks in Borneo –and to say “Thank you!” to the Knights.

Because it is a catered event you have to purchase your tickets ($25) in advance. No tickets will be sold at the door.

This event is solely sponsored by the Knights of Columbus and while held in the social hall of St. Anne Church, Rochester (1600 Mt. Hope Avenue), it is not a function co-sponsored by the church. All proceeds will go to benefit St. Peter’s Chapel or to off-set expenses.

To order tickets: email



One Response to “Oktoberfest For A Cause”

  1. Choir says:

    In addition to this event being a very worthy cause, the German good is absolutely spectacular. The food comes from Swan’s on Parsells Avenue. This very small combination restaurant/butcher has some of the tastiest German food outside of Germany. Very authentic and very well worth the money. I’ve eaten at Swan’s many times.

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