The members of St. Rita Catholic Church in Harahan will once again provide and serve lunch to the residents and staff of Covenant House on Christmas Day. And if you have some extra time, volunteers are needed.

“We feel blessed in many ways at St. Rita, and once again, we are paying it forward by providing Christmas lunch to the residents and staff of Covenant House in New Orleans,” said Maria Blanchard, one of the organizers. “The more than 100 homeless and abused teens who live at Covenant House are working to rebuild their lives and their futures.

“We are asking area residents to help us by preparing a dish for the luncheon or perhaps volunteering to serve on Christmas morning.”

St. Rita parishioners have been serving Christmas lunch at Covenant House since 1984, Blanchard added.

To volunteer or for information, call Blanchard at (504) 813-1930, or Ronalee Holmberg at (504) 606-8225.

Catholic retreat

The Catholic Charismatic Renewal of New Orleans will sponsor its annual Holy Spirit Teen and Young Adult Retreat for students in eighth grade through high school next month at the Landmark Hotel, 2601 Severn Ave., Metairie.

The theme of the retreat, planned for Jan. 8 to Jan. 10, is “Mercy,” and it will include talks, skits, music, fun, fellowship, worship, Mass, confessions and prayer teams. It will feature the Rev. Tim Hedrick, the Rev. Josh Johnson, Mary Bielski, Timmy McCaffery, Alex Lorio, Lindsay Binder, Aimee MacIver, Pat Duffey, Casey Sprehe and Chantelle Hudachek. Music will be provided by Matt Bourgeois and Will and Elise Bennett.

For cost and registration information, see You also can email or call (985) 674-5961.

Christmas parade

The Marrero Estelle Volunteer Fire Department will hold its annual Christmas parade on Saturday.

The parade will begin at 10 a.m. and is expected to end about 7 p.m. The parade will wend its way through the neighborhoods that it protects, including Lapalco Boulevard west of the Harvey Canal, and along Ames Boulevard to the levee on old Barataria Boulevard.

Holiday luncheon

The New Orleans Myasthenia Gravis Resource Group will hold its annual holiday luncheon from noon to 2 p.m. on Sunday at the Knights of Columbus Hall, 4021 Trenton St., Metairie.

All MG patients, family members, caregivers, friends, doctors and anybody interested in learning more about MG or whose lives have been affected by MG, are invited.

The event will include a short presentation on the upcoming fifth annual New Orleans MG Walk, which is scheduled for March 5. There will also be an update on MG awareness initiatives and scientific research.

Admission is free, but reservations are required. Those attending are asked to contribute a potluck dish for the event.

To secure you spot, email Tommy Santora, president of the organization, at or call (504) 376-7474.

Pet adoption

The Louisiana SPCA will hold a pet adoption from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at Clearview Mall, 4436 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie.

Adoption counselors and volunteers will be on hand to help you select the right pet for your family.

For information, call (504) 368-5191 or go to

Food bank moves

The Kenner Food Bank will move to a new location next week and a special ceremony is planned to mark the occasion.

The new facility at 317 Oxley St. will open Monday following a 10 a.m. ribbon-cutting ceremony.

The food bank had been located in a former fire station on Worth Street in south Kenner.

The site cost a little more than $700,000, with funds for the construction coming from a variety of sources, including the sale of the Worth Street facility to the East Jefferson Levee District for $84,000, Community Development Block Grants totaling more than $198,000 and contributions from six Kenner City Council members totaling $81,600, said a press release from Bob Ross in Kenner’s public information office. The contractor was J.A. Jack Julius Jr.

Second Harvest benefit

An benefit for Second Harvest Food Bank will take place at the new Panera Bread restaurant at 2444 Manhattan Blvd., Harvey. From 5:30 to 7 p.m. Thursday, customers can sample a variety of menu selections. Tickets are $10 and will admit two people; all the proceeds benefiting Second Harvest.

To purchase tickets, go to the Second Harvest website or call (504) 729-6335.

Eva Jacob Barkoff writes about the people and events in Jefferson Parish. She can be reached at