Johnston's St. Rocco’s Church readies for 81st Feast and Festival


Three ladies – namely Sr. Marie, Antoinette, Sr. Daisy and Sr. Donna – as well as Ralph Ciunci are gearing up for the annual Saint Rocco’s Feast and Festival, which will make its 81st appearance from Aug. 12-15 in Johnston.

“The sisters will perform a number of duties throughout the festival,” offered long-time co-chairman Richard Montella, who serves as president of the Holy Name Society. “They all enjoy working at the feast as well as meeting and greeting hundreds of people and the festival goers really love seeing them, too.”

Montella, who shares his role with the ageless John Ricci, met with the three sisters and Ciunci, president of Saint Rocco’s CFA (Church Friends Association) and the parish accountant, Sunday morning in the well-manicured and now decorated St. Francis Garden to go over a special raffle featuring two beautiful religious articles that will be part of an important raffle during the festival that dates back to 1940.

“This year we have two statutes for our religious raffle,” Montella announced. “We have the Infant of Prague and The Holy Family and both these items are absolutely beautiful.”

Tickets for the raffle, which will be drawn at conclusion of the four-day feast and festival, are priced at seven for only $10 and may be purchased inside the parish office during regular business hours.

Montella and Ciunci also issued an invitation for people to purchase a “Major Donor” ticket for $100 that will feature 10 percent of the total proceeds given as the major raffle prize. The drawing will be held on Sunday evening, Aug 15 at the close of the feast and festival and as both men said: “Thank you to all the people who have already purchased tickets that will benefit our overall parish operation.”

Anyone who’d like to become part of that growing list should call (401) 942-5203.

There was another religious announcement Sunday listing those priests who will preside over the Triduum of Mass and Candlelight Procession from Aug. 9-11.

The Liturgical Schedule will begin on Aug. 9 with Rev. Stephen Battey, pastor of Pope St. John Paul II from Pawtucket, conducting the Homily. On Aug. 10, Rev. Joshua Barrow, pastor of St. Theresa’s in Pawtucket, will celebrate the Mass, followed on Wednesday, Aug. 11, by Rev. Cesar Jaramillo of the Diocese of Paterson, New Jersey. All of the services will begin at 7 o’clock each night. The latter Mass will be followed by the traditional Candle Light Procession.

Rev. Angelo N. Carusi, pastor a Saint Rocco Catholic Church, will celebrate the Feast Mass at 11 o’clock with the always colorful procession taking place immediately following.

The festival, which will run from Aug. 12-15 and feature fine food, games, rides, entertainment, beer and wine, will be held Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 6 to 10 p.m. and from 1 to 10 p.m. Sunday. Early Bird Food Tickets will be available at the rectory office beginning Wednesday, Aug. 11, and people can purchase them in strips of 10 for $8. The same strip will cost $10 during the feast.

Also, Lisa Ciunci sent out a “Calling All Bakers” note for people to make their special homemade cakes, pies, cookies and desserts for the always popular Bake Sale Table and should call her at (401) 862-6183. All he donated items must be labeled as to the flavor and if the item contains nuts.

In keeping with tradition, Rockwell Amusements will be back and set up a host of rides and games.


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