Golf tourney to aid seminarians

Golf tourney to aid seminarians


The upcoming Annual Floyd Q. Doolittle Golf Classic tournament is crucial for raising money for seminarians, says St. Francis priest Fr. Albeenreddy Vatti.

“The church needs priests to serve and minister, and service is one of the main aspects of Christianity,” Vatti said. “We need priests to bring people closer to God, as it is their duty. This golf tournament raises money to do just that.” 

The tournament, which takes place on Saturday, May 14, at the Whisper Lake Golf Club at 414 Annandale Parkway, benefits the Seminarian Education Fund of the Diocese of Jackson. The Knights of Columbus Council 9543 is putting everything on. 

“I’m expecting good participation this year,” Vatti said. “We hope everyone comes out to be a part of it.” 

Tunney Vandevender, district deputy of the Mississippi Jurisdiction of the Knights of Columbus, said the tournament brings family and friends out to have fun and spend time with one another. 

“It’s good to see everyone come out, and I’m happy I'm able to share some time with them for a good cause,” Vandevender said. 

He said his favorite part of golfing is the challenge. 

“The challenge to perfect your game is something I love, and the environment is very pretty,” Vandevender said. “I’ve been fortunate over the years to work for companies that are generous enough to participate in these tournaments with giveaways and prizes. This year my company, Nokian Tyres, will provide all the golfers and volunteers visors, and a set of tires (passenger or light truck tires) as a prize sometime during the tournament.” 

The tournament is a four-person scramble format. One-person registration is $90, and four-person registration is $360. Each registration comes with lunch and dinner, snacks, a tournament souvenir cup, unlimited beverages, and practice balls. 

Registration opens at 11:45 a.m. and ends at 12:45 p.m. with lunch and a putting contest. The tournament begins at 1 p.m. with a shotgun start and ends at 4:45 p.m. with dinner and awards. 

“I directed this tournament for a few years and what I enjoy about it the most is raising money for seminarian education,” Vandevender said. “The more revenue we generate with this tournament, the more we can support seminarians and help with their tuitions. We usually generate around $15,000 on average.

Participants can also purchase sponsorships between $100 and $1,000, with varying perks and benefits. 

“Every dollar we collect and donate to seminarians helps,” said Art Ring, tournament coordinator. “The success of the tournament hinges on peoples’ support and contributions.” 

For more information and anyone interested in participating in the tournament and buying a sponsorship, call Art Ring at (601) 559-8581. It is a great way to spend time with friends while putting on a popular community outing that greatly benefits future priests at St. Francis. 

For more information about the Seminarian Education Fund, contact the Diocese of Jackson at 601-969-1880. 

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