Around 72 trees sparked to life at St. Anselms tree lighting ceremony on December 1. Church leader Monsignor John Maloney said he hoped the lighting would, first and foremost, help to spread a message of hope to many facing difficult times.
A lot of these people have seen very bleak times lately, so this year is important, Maloney said. He commented that dozens of St. Anselms new church and school members hail from Belle Harbor, Breezy Point, and other areas severely affected by Sandy. Many of them are still displaced and will continue to be throughout the holiday season.
These trees, Maloney said, represent light and hope for many.
Congregation and community members purchased the 75 trees, as memorials for loved ones. Around 200 people attended the event, which began with a mass and continued through to the tree lighting.