Berks

Church volunteers continue sweet tradition in Bally

Volunteers prepare for St. Francis Academy Bazaar

Church volunteers continue sweet tradition in Bally

BALLY, Pa. - A sweet tradition 42 years strong continues in eastern Berks County.

"The group is just wonderful. Everyone works well together," said Tess Luft. "There's not any problems, and we just enjoy each other's company, so it's like one big party."

Luft organizes the annual cookie baking at the the Most Blessed Sacrament Parish in Bally. Every Thursday in October, church volunteers get together to bake cookies.

"I help my dad with the ovens, and I do the weighing and the bagging," said Sharon Dierolf, Luft's daughter, who has been volunteering for 25 years. "So, I kind of have the same job every year, and I love it."

The treats sell at the Saint Francis Academy Bazaar to benefit the school.

"Our goal is to bake a thousand pounds each year, depending on our volunteer groups of baking teams," volunteer Mary Ellen Maloney said.

Each team bakes about 50 pounds a night.

"It's like a competition between the baking teams, too," Maloney said. "We have a fun competition of who can bake the most each week. No prize or anything. Just bragging rights."

The group makes several varieties of cookies, including chocolate chip, oatmeal raisin and its famous butter cookie.

"It's exciting to see how quickly they sell at the bazaar," Maloney said.

"It's rewarding when we leave here and we know that we've helped the church and the school," Dierolf said.

Equally rewarding for the group is sharing in friendship.

"We love it," Luft said. "The fellowship and everybody getting together, it's awesome."

The St. Francis Academy Bazaar will be held at the school, 668 Pine Street, from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. on November 11.


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