Easter and Passover officially mark the beginning of spring and so do the pear blossom trees that are beginning to bloom along Lenox Avenue. The warm, sunny days don’t hurt either.
His Eminence Timothy Cardinal Dolan visited the Catholic Charities of New York’s Bronx Food Distribution Center on Holy Thursday, April 13, to distribute food to clients of the center’s food pantry. The Catholic Charities of New York opened the Bronx Food Distribution Center pantry, located on East 152nd Street, in the Bronx in 2016, to increase access to fresh produce and support services to a network of 26 community-based interfaith pantries and soup kitchens to assist the food insecure and hungry of the Bronx and Northern Manhattan.
The 1,050-square foot site has received, sorted and distributed approximately 518,000 pounds of food. More than 376,000 pounds of that food have been distributed to partner programs, which has enabled them to provide 305,000 meals to community residents. Goya Foods is a generous supporter of the Food Distribution Center, having previously donated 300,000 pounds of food to Catholic Charities of New York, much of which is distributed through the Bronx Food Distribution Center.
This year marks a 100-year legacy of service for Catholic Charities. To celebrate, Catholic Charities is launching the next century of providing help and creating hope for New Yorkers in need. Catholic Charities is recommitting to providing basic human services that are efficient, effective, accountable and caring and recommitting to being a valued partner in building the fabric of a caring New York.
Canaan Baptist Church of Christ celebrates the 11th Pastoral Anniversary of the Rev. Dr. Thomas D. Johnson Sr., for his spirit-filled leadership at the renowned church. Canaan, located in the village of Harlem on West 116th Street between Seventh and Eighth avenues, the home of civil rights activist, the Rev. Wyatt T. Walker. The Pastoral Anniversary celebrant will be the Rev. Dr. Alan V. Ragland, senior pastor of Third Baptist Church of Chicago. The celebration will take place Sunday, April 23, at the 10 a.m. service.
Award-winning writer, director and producer Ron Beverly, whose short film “American Hunger” premiered in New York City and is being developed into a feature film script, is now developing, directing and producing the new play, “Wink.” “Wink” is the story of a homeless and traumatized gender-questioning teenager and Dario Villanova, an ex A-list actor doing B movies, who are down on their luck in Los Angeles. Their kindred spirits bond over music and a death in Dario’s extended family to forge a heartfelt and unconventional love story of surrogate father and child. The cast of five includes, Joshua Dee Jesus, Joe Isenberg, Joe Maruzzo, Jose Joaquin Perez and Nicole Williams. The play runs from April 13 to May 7 at the Theater for the New City, Crystal Field, 155 First Ave. between Ninth and 10th Streets.
Look for more exciting things to come from Beverly as Woodie King Jr. is set to revive the acclaimed Audelco Award nominated hit play, “Driving While Black & Other Felonious Funk,” for the 2017/2018 season in October.
Woodie King Jr., as you know, is the founder and producing director of New Federal Theatre, which has presented more than 325 productions in its 46-year history. Having produced both on and off Broadway and in regional theaters and universities across the United States, King is recognized by many of the theater greats who have provided funding in part for his productions. Sponsors include but are not limited to the Ford Foundation, the New York State Council on the Arts, NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, Lucille Lortel Foundation, Shubert Foundation, Xerox Foundation, 42nd Street Development Corporation, LaTanya R. and Samuel L. Jackson and Pauletta Pearson and Denzel Washington. King was recently inducted in the Theater Hall of Fame for his outstanding contribution to the American theater.
The Historic Districts Council presents “Harlem & The Future,” a daylong conference focused on West Harlem resilience in the face of neighborhood change. The day will entail keynote speakers, panel discussions, walking tours and screening of a film titled “Gentrification.” The event will take place Saturday, April 29, 9-5 p.m. at the City College of New York Spitzer School of Architecture, 141 Convent Ave. at 135th Street. The cost is $10, with lunch and walking tour included. Seniors and students are admitted free. For more information, contact westharlemcpo@gmail .com.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art celebrated the 50th anniversary of the award of the Temple of Dendur to The Met. April 28, 1967, President Lyndon B. Johnson awarded an ancient Egyptian temple built in the first century B.C.—a gift from Egypt to the United States—to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Today the structure, the Temple of Dendur in the Sackler Wing, is one of the iconic and most beloved works of art at The Met. To further celebrate the anniversary and enhance the occasion, The Met is featuring a selection of authentic Chinese teas and light delicacies from the East Village teahouse Tea Drunk for a limited time only. Tea is served on the second-floor balcony overlooking the Great Hall, Monday-Thursday and Sunday 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Friday & Saturday 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The Met is located at 84th Street and Fifth Avenue.
As you may recall my mentioning in a previous article, I will be out of town April 19-26 on a whirlwind trip to Europe. If I were planning a trip, I don’t know that it would be to Europe because the climate there is rather precarious. However, my dear friend Garrett Williams, who died March 25, left provisions in his will for me and another dear friend for an all-expense paid round-trip, one-week hotel stay in Dortmund, Germany, to attend his funeral. And so dear readers, we’re off!
Of course, Europe wouldn’t be Europe without a side trip to London, England, complimented by a trip on the EuroRail for a one-day sightseeing tour of Paris, now would it? Of course not. So I planned one. We promise to stay close, alert and say our prayers the whole time we’re there. Look for my guest writer, Dr. Ernst Robertson (if he agrees and my editor, Kristen Fayne-Mulroy, approves) to substitute for me for next week’s edition. I promise the whole thing will be fascinating.
Until next week … kisses.