ORLANDO – When one of your parish priests throws the first pitch at a Major League Spring Training baseball game, you know it’s going to be a good night. The Holy Family Fun Night is an annual event, but this year the bases were loaded at Disney World’s ESPN Wide World of Sports. The final score was Detroit Tigers-3, Atlanta Braves-4, families-a grand slam.
Mixed with fun each year is the mission for families to spend quality time together. Family night on March 22 included watching warm-up practice, Father Benjamin Lehnertz throwing the first pitch and a performance by the school choir. Father Lehnertz, who played baseball for Ball State University in Indiana said, “It was a lot of fun. I was throwing strikes during warm up. Then I felt like 9,000 eyeballs on me and the opening pitch went a little wild. But it was truly the children’s choir that knocked it out of the park with the National Anthem.”
Music Director Tim Conyers was beyond excited about the children’s performance. “Amidst fireworks and other pyrotechnics, 42 of our choral students sung their hearts out and resounded in perfect unison the National Anthem, as 3,000 sports fans went wild.”
“I love baseball and it was so awesome to see Father Ben on the mound. Getting time throughout the night to talk to Sr. Dorothy, Father Ben, my family and friends and watch a baseball game made for the best night ever,” said Aidan, a 6th grade student.
School principal, Sister Dorothy Sayer of the Religious Teachers Filippini, was thrilled that the venue provided Lenten “Friday friendly” menu options such as shrimp, fish tacos, and her favorite fish and chips. “What could be more American than sharing baseball and a beautiful evening with our families?” she said. “We were so blessed to have absolutely beautiful weather for Family Fun Night 2019. It was truly an amazing evening.”
By Glenda Meekins of the Florida Catholic – March 23, 2019