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Sparkill Dominicans Move Immigrant Ministry to New Home

SPARKILL, NY -- October 27, 2008 -- Sunday, September 21, 2008, was a day of prayer, laughter, rejoicing, and friendship as Cecilia LaPietra, OP (Sparkill) the Executive Director of One to One Learning, officially welcomed everyone to its new site, the Marydell Faith and Life Center. 

One To One, Inc. is a not-for-profit, incorporated, outreach organization, founded by the Dominican Congregation of Our Lady of the Rosary, Sparkill, New York. The mission is to provide English classes and other supportive services for immigrants to empower them to reach their full potential and to lead meaningful lives within their communities.

The Sisters of Our Lady of Christian Doctrine own Marydell, their property in West Nyack NY.  It is used as a summer camp, a place for groups to come and enjoy the beauty of the countryside, parish gatherings, retreats, and catechetical programs.  The sisters have been aware that Sr. Cecilia LaPietra’s program was outgrowing the available space at St. John’s Parish in Piermont and offered their site as an alternative. They opened their doors to the Hispanic immigrants.

Sr. Agnes O’Connor, RCD, president of this generous community, spoke to the assembled group of their early work with immigrants and of the joy they were experiencing in this opportunity to use their property for their original ministry of service.

Tours were given of the freshly painted cabins transformed into offices, plus a computer lab and classrooms.  A delicious luncheon was provided by neighboring restaurants.  The day concluded with a prayer service that united all in thanksgiving for the people at St. John’s, the sisters at Marydell, the volunteers from St. Thomas Aquinas College and Tappan Zee High School, the teachers, the students and of course the Sparkill Dominicans who have watched the steady growth of this wonderful program since 1997.

Joan Smith, OP (Blauvelt)
Director of Communications
Dominican Sisters of Sparkill



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