ISC’s 2017 International Thanksgiving Luncheon

Published November 17, 2017

Following its long-established tradition, the International Service Center (ISC) organized its annual International Thanksgiving Luncheon on Friday, November 17, 2017 in the Fellowship of the Market Square Presbyterian Church.  It was a fitting opportunity for our ISC’s staff and volunteers to express our sincere appreciation to our partners in mission who have been sharing our common cause of caring for the disadvantaged and underprivileged people in our community.

Our 2017 Thanksgiving Luncheon event was a wonderful success.  Over ninety guests representing the local and state government, educational and medical institutions, business and professional sectors, immigrant and refugee communities, and the clergy came together to socialize and network in the spirit of good fellowship.  After a moving invocation offered by Reverend Thomas Sweet, Pastor of Market Square Presbyterian Church, the guests were invited to enjoy a selection of international dishes displayed on three long buffet tables.  In addition to the delicious roasted turkey and smoked ham meticulously prepared by the ISC’s Women Volunteer Team, the guests had the occasion to sample various delicatessen from practically all over the world.  This year, eighteen ISC’s partners in mission have contributed some of the most appetizing dishes from Afghanistan, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, Congo, Dominican Republic, Ethiopia, Gambia, India, Korea, Morocco, Myanmar, Philippines, Puerto-Rico, Russia, Syria, Uzbekistan, and Vietnam.  During an unrehearsed  entertainment program, many brave (and talented) performers stepped up to the microphone to sing the most popular songs of their country of origin, including Juan Bibiloni of Mallorca, Ynet Vega of Puerto-Rico, Shamim Dawood of Kenya, Orlando and Lucila of the Philippines, and especially Tiffany Chang Lawson, the Executive Director of the Governor’s Advisory Commission on Asian and Pacific Affairs, originally from China.  To conclude the entertainment program, Monita Saru ISC’s youngest volunteer, with her classmate, offered a spectacular traditional dance from Bhutan to an ecstatic audience.

A remarkable moment of this year ISC’s Thanksgiving event was the opportunity for Charlotte Fry, the State Coordinator of the PA Refugee Resettlement Program to personally welcome the Syrian refugees who have just been resettled in this area from their war-torn country.


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