You’ve heard of the Flying Nun, but have you heard about the Dancing Priests? You will have that opportunity Nov. 11 as three Catholic priests take to the dance floor to raise funds for Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church in Newhall.
Father Richard Martini, pastor of OLPH, along with Father Ray Marquez, associate pastor, and Father Norm Supancheck from Alemany High School have spent hours with professional dancers from D’Wilfri Dance Art Studio learning ballroom dancing. The three priests, in costumes, will be performing the waltz, the swing and a surprise third dance in an effort to win votes and be awarded the coveted, “OLPH Mirrorball Trophy.”
Votes cost $10 each and funds received from the event will benefit the church’s capital campaign “On The Way” that will expand the parking lot at OLPH, build a new pastoral center and ultimately a new church.
Dancing With Our Priests Chair Margaret Shapiro said the committee wanted to put the fun back into fundraising.
“The priests are working very hard in the studio and seem to be enjoying their lessons very much,” Shapiro said. “We wanted to bring our community closer together with something new, current and exciting.”
Shapiro said it has been exciting to see the priests’ weekly practice and the improvements they are making each step of the way.
Father Martini said it took him a long time to learn to get his feet going in the right direction. “The most difficult part was learning the routine and trying to remember the steps,” he said. “The waltz is a beautiful and dreamy routine while the east coast is bouncy and happy.” He promises the crowd an “eye-opening and jaw-dropping” experience with his surprise dance of the evening.
Videos of the priests rehearsing can be found on the parish website (www.olph-church.org) and people are encourage to view the video and vote. Ballots can be downloaded from the website or picked up at the parish office. The winner of the competition will be determined by 40 percent of the populous vote and 60 percent by a panel of professional judges on the night of the event.
Dancing With Our Priests begins at 6:30 p.m. Tickets for the Nov. 11 gala can be purchased at the church office or by contacting Wendy Hearn at 661 254-2350. Cost is $100 per person or $175 per couple and will include dinner, the competition, a professional exhibition and dancing for all.