Coffee, eggs and Fr. Scalia?

Father Paul D. Scalia, Arlington Bishop Paul S. Loverde's delegate for clergy, wants to have breakfast with you - for a price, that is. You and a friend could be part of an eight-person entourage who break bread and enjoy a lively discussion with Father Scalia at the Del Ray Café while benefiting St. Rita School in Alexandria.

St. Rita School, serving children from preschool to eighth grade, will host its fourth annual online auction March 4-11 and its annual auction gala April 13 at the Carlyle Club in Alexandria. A meal with Father Scalia is just one of the many items for the taking.

The St. Rita School auction began 13 years ago when a group of parents came together to raise money to purchase a copier. The gala was a potluck held in the school's basement and raised $10,000, allowing the staff to purchase their first Xerox machine.

Since then, the school has continued to build upon that success. A core group of parents, most of whose children have moved on to local high schools and colleges, ensured the auction's legacy would continue and the school's needs would be met through this parent-led fundraiser. Their efforts have evolved and expanded to include the online auction, which serves as a preview of what will be offered at the gala in April.

"Many say that St. Rita School is a unique community, where our parents work and volunteer in ways that are rare at other schools," said Leigha Doerrer, auction chair. More than "60 percent of school families volunteer in some way to support the annual auction."

This year's goal is to raise $70,000 between the online auction and the gala. "St. Rita School continues to amaze me with the outpouring of charitable giving from our parents, faculty and parishioners," said Doerrer. "This is a community that supports and invests generously in the education of our children."

Doerrer says that some items that might encourage bidders to reach deep include two floor-seat tickets to the April 3 sold-out Maroon 5 concert at the Verizon Center in Washington, golf with a golf course specialist at East Potomac Golf Course in Washington, and a summer adventure package for two at Roundtop Mountain in Lewisberry, Pa.

"We hope people across the diocese will visit the online auction and help us reach our fundraising goal," said Doerrer.

Find out more
Email Leigha Doerrer at or go to

© Arlington Catholic Herald 2013