Members of Torchbearer Zeta met at the home of Maggie Werner for the first meeting of March.
Werner chose a St. Patrick’s Day theme for her meeting. Each member received a shamrock necklace and pin, and participated in a St. Patrick’s Day word search. In keeping with the upcoming holiday, Werner gave a program on St. Patrick’s Day.
St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated on March 17 every year because it is believed that St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, died on that date in 461 A.D. It began as a religious holiday to honor the saint for bringing Christianity to Ireland. A lot of legends have developed around the life of St. Patrick, but the most notable was his use of the clover, or shamrock. He used each of the leaves to explain the trinity.
The very first St. Patrick's Day parade actually didn’t happen in Ireland, but in New York City back in 1762, when Irish soldiers serving the English military joined together and marched down the street to Irish music.
The biggest celebration of St. Patrick’s Day in the U.S. takes place in Chicago, where residents dye the Chicago River green, a tradition that has taken place since 1962.
In Ireland, they have been celebrating this holiday, also known as the “feast day of St. Patrick,” since about the 10th century. It’s called this because it takes place during the Catholic season of Lent. Corned beef and cabbage is the traditional thing to eat on St. Patrick’s Day.
St. Patrick is often credited with ridding Ireland of snakes. It’s true, there are no snakes even today on the island. Leprechauns are often associated with St. Patrick’s Day, however, the celebration originally didn’t have anything to do with these mythical creatures. Then, Walt Disney released a film called “Darby O’Gill and the Little People,” which introduced America to a very different sort of leprechaun than the cantankerous little man of Irish folklore.
Werner served members a potato bar with all the trimmings of potato, chili, butter, sour cream, shredded cheese and bacon bits. Green napkins, mints, nuts and peppermints, along with sherbet ice cream rounded out the meal.
The message from the Torch was the theme, “We put our hearts into it.” Werner told of a Wisconsin chapter that designed heart bracelets specifically for the chapter members. Each member earned the bracelet by meeting with a member, having lunch, visiting a member or doing a good deed for a member. When they encountered a fellow member in any of these ways, she earned the bracelet link and began earning the hearts which were crocheted by a chapter member. This is a unique use of the sorority theme. As with most themes, one of the main purposes is to strengthen our love and friendship!
President Cheryl Sargent has received information on the founders' day celebration to be shared at founders' day. The chapter is responsible for the place and menu, collecting money, paying bills and also providing a refreshment. Treasurer Zita Lomax has received the charms for founders' day.
Members will celebrate the chapter’s birthday at the next meeting, hosted by Marian Shaw. Members are asked to meet at the Pickrell Locker at 6 p.m. for a tour of the facility. Following the tour, members will proceed to Shaw’s house for the meeting and celebration.