Staff and clients of Phoenix House Delaware County Center welcomed some new friends from the past – members of the Christian Brothers Class of 1962, celebrating their 50th Anniversary. Our current facility served as their campus residence years ago. Our guests originally came to the Belle Terre mansion studying as novices, ages 16-21, nine of the males hailed from the U.S., and the other five young men came from Canada. After a tour of the grounds and our buildings, we were treated to an educational presentation from the group. A slide show with personal photographs, anecdotes, and historical facts gave us a rare glimpse of their history, and our building. Some members originally built the bell tower which still stands at the front entrance, now surrounded by flowers. Many of the novices originally came from the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, bringing a hearty community culture and folklore which thrived for hundreds of years. A guest played us a song on the accordion to represent the native culture.
After all these years, the men were very impressed with the upkeep of the building, the restoration efforts, and new improvements as they enjoyed the full tour. Many memories were shared and friendships renewed; most of the men had not seen each other in years and they introduced their families to each other. They spent time with our residents and everyone joined together for a big barbecue outing on our grounds. Our staff and clients were amazed at the history and majesty of their facility from years gone by and the wondrous stories. We are proud and pleased to make these new friends and invite the members of Class of ’62 and their families to come visit again in the future!