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Association Corner
This is the beginning of a new year and I wish I had a crystal ball to see what is in store in 1998 for the Association! I predict we'll have a great year. But this is also a time of reflection, and as I look back at 1997, I can't help but be proud of how far we have come together as a community. There was a time in the not so distant past when I didn't think the Association would survive. It was a struggle to get financial backing to put a function together, and organizing and planning anything became a burden for the Committee with just a few families to help.

But the heavy mantle of responsibility has certainly lightened as more and more people, without being asked, have offered their talents in various ways either to organize a choir for our Mother Teresa Mass, or to design a flyer or to type a mass program, or to computerize our mailing list, or to bake a dessert for a picnic, etc. It is so heartwarming to experience this offer of help. We despaired that this would ever happen. But I now believe you have embraced this Association and this has been expressed to me in various ways either in the form of sincere appreciation, or in the form of assistance.

One big milestone we experienced in 1997 was that our membership grew to 170 families by year end. And by year end, we had so many people who wanted to attend the Holiday Ball that we were in a never-experienced-before situation of turning down about 130 people's request for tickets. While it was extremely gratfiying to learn that our functions have become so popular, the committee experienced great difficulty in coming to the decision to limit the numbers so that Akbar would not be overcrowed. While Akbar has served us well, it looks like we have outgrown them. Consequently, the Committee is busy looking for bigger and better halls for 1998.

This is also a time to remind you about membership dues for 1998. A membership form has been included in this newsletter for your convenience. At the back of the form is a list of families who have renewed membership. Please check to see if your name is on the list. I look forward to seeing you all at the Spring Fling in April. Till then, stay healthy and stay a member of the Goan Assoc of NJ, Inc.

President: Valerie Moniz