STA Welcomes Newest Aquinas Stars at Annual Dinner
Posted on 10/08/2021
As one of the most beloved St. Thomas Aquinas High School traditions, the Aquinas Star program entered its 34th year with the annual Spaghetti Dinner on Thursday, October 7. The program is a cornerstone of STA’s mission to serve others, in this case doing so by adopting families with children who live with chronic or acute medical conditions. This year, the two Aquinas Stars are 1-year-old James Fucci 11-year-old Lauren Cervone.

The Spaghetti Dinner is the kickoff event for a year of many spirited and heart-filled events. The dinner is when the STA community gets to meet the Aquinas Stars for the first time and heap them with welcoming and love. The dinner was once again held inside after being a drive-thru event in 2020 due to Covid-19. The attendees and volunteers in the cafeteria erupted in applause as each of the Aquinas Stars made their entrance, accompanied by family members and STA students. Over the course of the evening, they were able to meet many students, faculty, parents, community members, and Felician Sisters from the Diocese of Metuchen. James and Lauren were also showered with gifts from the Aquinas Star Board and Varsity athletes. Reacting to the warmth and generosity, James’s mom Diane Fucci, who is a faculty member at STA, said, “We’re grateful to be a part of the Aquinas Star program. James is having a blast and we’re looking forward to having more fun all year!”

As the biggest fundraiser of the year for the Aquinas Star program, it is also an occasion to provide financial support to the families. Over 850 dinners were ordered by sit-down, takeout, and delivery attendees, helping to raise over $9,500 for the families.

Helping to make the Aquinas Star program into the overwhelming success that it is are Aquinas Star Co-Chairpersons Morgan Brennan ’22 and Kylie Lucas ‘23 and a host of other students and Campus Ministry team members, not to mention over 175 student and faculty volunteers who dedicated their evening to ushering guests, serving food, cleaning tables, and accompanying the invitees. Additionally, the food, drinks, and paperware were all provided by generous student and community donations and the kitchen was crewed by the Woodbridge Knights of Columbus. Morgan and Kylie offered their impression of their event: “Each and every year that we return to the Spaghetti Dinner, we are amazed by the same strong and passionate love that each and every individual brings to support the Aquinas Star program.”

Aquinas Star organizer and Campus Minister Sr. Cynthia best summed up the events of the evening with her remarks during the dinner, “It is so important to care for others and to show our students how to care.” And so, the Aquinas Star Board, on behalf of St. Thomas Aquinas High School, would like to thank everyone who made this evening possible through their love, service, and support as it looks forward to another remarkable year.

Aquinas Star Spaghetti Dinner 2021