One hundred years is a long time. I am not that old but I remember much of our proud history from our founding by Nicola Piscitelli in 1911, who hailed as President of this great organization for seven years; my cousin Dominic, a Mayor in Westbury, who served as President for twenty four years; and I served for twenty years. The Piscitelli's have served as Presidents of this glorious Society for more than half a century.
The Society has lasted through two world wars and other conflicts. We have not been in existence as long as the Roman Empire but then again we are still here as both a beacon for struggling immigrants and as a charitable orgainization for all in need.
Today, we are among the oldest ethnic and Italian American organizations in the United States. We continue to draw our membership strength from enclave Italians in Westbury, Carle Place, Salisbury and surrounding areas. Our Annual Feast of the Assumption and charitable donations are a testament to our strength as an organization.
We continue to support our Church, St. Brigid, built by the artisans of Italy who made their way to our famous Italian community of Breezy Hill ("The Hill") more than one hundred thirty years ago. Like the great Duomos of Italy, of which it is modeled, it still indestructibly stands like much of New York, built by Italians. The entire infrastructure of New York and this nation is a testament to our work ethic and ingenuity as a people devoted to the Blessed Mother.
Our religious fervor has always been the most vital part of this organization. The Blessed Mother has always been a symbol of our unity and our care for all people regardless of their race, religion, sex or place of origin. Our role has always been to help others since we have known discrimination as an ethnic group. We have forgiven those who did that to us but remember the lessons learned from that experience. We remain sensitive to the plight of other ethnic and racial groups in their struggle for equality. The way we have made our way in this country will forever be a model for other groups.
Many of our members have worked to help the people of the world. We are like missionairies in this respect. Our work will continue as new members from the next generations join. We have accomplished much with more to do. For the past one hundred years we have shown that we have the stamina to stay the course. It is our honor to praise the past, present and future members of the Society for what has been done and the work ahead. A Monsignor, formerly from our Parish, once said of the Society that it is doing God's work. God's work is to help others and so is ours. Congratulations to the Maria SS. Dell'Assunta Society on one hundred years of success.
Love & Peace to all & God Bless America
Joseph R. Piscitelli
100 Year Anniversary Message from Joseph Piscitelli, Past President
Maria SS. Dell' Assunta Society