To most Americans, the Fourth of July has always meant three things: good food, fireworks and family. It is a time for the remembrance of the history of the nation. As we get older, traditions may change or take on new aspects; however, the holiday will always bring about the togetherness of family and friends. This is certainly true for everyone here at Mullen Home.
The day begins with food preparations. On the menu is classic hamburgers and hot dogs, freshly cooked by volunteers; coleslaw and potato salad are also part of the barbecue, along with chips and a variety of refreshing drinks, finished off with yummy ice cream enjoyed by Residents, employees, sisters, friends, family, and benefactors.
And decorations abound. Over fifty American flags are displayed anywhere possible around the auditorium, the patio and to the canopy out on the lawn. Flashy red, white, and blue tinsel is hung around tables, while balloons and mini flags take their place as centerpieces. The place of celebration and its participants match in colors, and soon it will be time for the fun to start.
Before the party begins is a special Mass complete with patriotic songs sung heartily by everyone. It is the perfect beginning to a time that is set aside for such blessed people to come together. Soon after Mass, a special flag ceremony takes place outside by the flagpole, honoring the arrival of Mullen Home’s new American Flag. Everyone lines up in front, smaller flags in hand. On one side, all the Veteran residents stand together and represent those who fought in the Korean, Vietnam and second World Wars
Soon every table is filled with people enjoying food, drink and the company of those around them. A variety of music plays from the balcony above, and at one point, the Fourth of July raffle winners are announced by Mother. One resident has an extra special day as she celebrates her birthday with her family.
The Fourth of July at the Little Sisters of the Poor is always an occasion to be looked forward to. And why wouldn’t it be? Everyone radiates happiness that is hard to ignore. The companionship of the whole family at the Mullen Home makes life that much sweeter and is truly a blessing from God.