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College to host annual holiday marketplace sale

| Thursday, December 7, 2017

Every December, the Lillie O’Grady Center at Saint Mary’s hosts the Sisters of the Holy Cross Christmas Bazaar, a holiday marketplace which sells handmade gifts. The proceeds of the bazaar benefit the Sisters of the Holy Cross.

The 2017 Christmas bazaar will take place Wednesday from 1 p.m.–7 p.m. and Thursday from 7 a.m.–4 p.m.

Sr. Rose Goodrow, director of development, said in an email that “the bazaar has a long history for the Sisters,” as there is even a record of the bazaar occurring in the early 1950s. She said the proceeds from the Bazaar are “split in half,” with the money divided evenly to support the Ministry with the Poor and the other half lending support to the Sisters Retirement Fund.

Sr. Jeanette Fettig, Goodrow’s predecessor as the director of development, said the Christmas bazaar is popular with community members and students.

“Always, in the first two hours, we have mobs of people — everyone is respectful of one another, however,” she said. “We have a lot of people from the community, some from South Bend, Holy Cross Village and a lot of Notre Dame students. The students love the cards and campus photos.”

Fettig said the bazaar is well received because it is reminiscent of a traditional Christmas bazaar that many of the visitors are familiar with.

“I had a man come up to me and say, ‘You know, this is a real old-fashioned Christmas bazaar,’” she said.

Because the bazaar benefits the Sisters of the Holy Cross, Fettig said those who patronize the event develop a special connection with the Sisters.  

“Some of the items are made by the Sisters, and all the proceeds go to the Sisters of the Holy Cross,” she said. “Everyone who comes [is considered] a friend of the Sisters.”

Goodrow said many who visit the bazaar have faith the money spent will be put to good use.

“Many of the people who come to purchase items at the bazaar had previously interacted with the Sisters somewhere in their personal lives,” she said. “They also know the Sisters will continue to serve the poor as well as support their retired sisters.”

Even though Fettig is no longer the director of the event, she has maintained her involvement.

“I spend the whole year pricing everything. … All those price tags are written by my pen,” she said.  

The Christmas bazaar is run, in part, by volunteers. Volunteer Mary Blume said she got involved in the bazaar because she loves Saint Mary’s, where her granddaughter is a student.  

“My granddaughter is a senior at Saint Mary’s, so I love to support Saint Mary’s and everyone in the community,” she said.

Volunteer Sally Tobin said she volunteers because she wants to give back to the Sisters.

“The Sisters do so much,” she said. “We like to give back.”

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About Gina Twardosz

Gina Twardosz is a senior English Writing and Communication Studies double major at Saint Mary's College. She's the co-editor of the Investigative Unit, a Saint Mary's social media liaison, and she occasionally writes for SMC News and Scene. Gina is a tried and true Midwesterner and yes, she does say "ope" often.

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