Guests attend the annual Mount Carmel Guild Gala Oct. 18 in the Trenton Country Club. The Guild is celebrating its 100th anniversary year. Georgiana Francisco photo
Guests attend the annual Mount Carmel Guild Gala Oct. 18 in the Trenton Country Club. The Guild is celebrating its 100th anniversary year. Georgiana Francisco photo

During the Oct. 18 Mount Carmel Guild Gala, which kicked off the guild’s 100th anniversary of serving people in need in the Greater Mercer County area, more than 200 guests gathered in the Trenton County Club to celebrate and honor the Guild’s service and its supporters.

Receiving awards were: Jeanne Ameye, volunteer, St. George Parish, Titusville; Lee (Eileen) Buente, coordinator of the Helping Hands Ministry, St. Gregory the Great Parish, Hamilton Square; James Gambino Jr., social services outreach volunteer in Our Lady of Good Counsel Parish, West Trenton; Pennington Quality Market (Barbara Rothwell Henderson and Michael Rothwell, store owners); Paul Kimaid, leadership council chairman for The Catholic Community of Hopewell Valley (the linked parishes of St. George, Titusville, St. James, Pennington, and St. Alphonsus, Hopewell); Dominican Sister Loretta Maggio, who retired after 30 years of service as director of the Guild’s Emergency Assistance Program; Stephen Mohary, seniors ministry leader and member of the Linked Leadership Council for The Catholic Community of Hopewell Valley; Tony and Lisa Montrone, ministry volunteer coordinators in St. Paul Parish, Princeton; Denise Reil, executive director of Visitation Home, Yardville, and member of St. Gregory the Great Parish, and Trenton Catholic Academy.

Buente, who is in charge of getting groceries for the elderly, especially the homebound, said her inspiration to assist the Guild came after her father, who had been living with her, passed away. This led to her having more time to devote to her parish and various ministries.

“It’s now been eight years that I’ve been working with the Guild supervising over 100 volunteers to ensure our work gets done and no one goes hungry,” she said.

Gambino was honored for his work collecting donations for the various churches and charities in the Mercer County area for the past 10 years. “I’m helping people I don’t even know,” he said, “but it gives me great satisfaction. I feel that’s what Jesus wants us to do – to help our neighbors even though we may not know who they are.”

Past honoree Kay Kowalski, also of St. Gregory the Great Parish, served as ministry volunteer coordinator for three years. She said she found it fulfilling to ensure those in need of nourishment will never go hungry.

“We work very closely with the Guild in their food pantry, delivering food we’ve collected from our parish twice a month,” she said. “If there are five weeks in the month, we give them an extra week.”