Pray and force yourself never to harbor rancor in your heart toward those who offend you.
Venerable Mother Clelia Merloni

Holly Berry Festival

The annual Holly Berry Festival, a juried craft fair to benefit the Apostles of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Retirement Fund, occurs each year on the Friday and Saturday before Thanksgiving.

This Year’s Festival

If you are a crafter interested in participating in the 2017 Holly Berry Festival on November 17 and 18, please download and complete our Craft Fair Application.

The 2017 Holly Berry will be in the Philip Paolella Jr. Recreational Center at: 

Sacred Heart Academy
265 Benham St.
Hamden, CT 06514

Please mark your calendar for the following festivities:

Friday, November 17 from 3:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

  • Baked Ziti Dinner 5:00–7:00 p.m. 
  • Cost: Adults $10/Children $5

Saturday, Nov. 18 from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. 

  • Free Admission
  • Food Court
  • Baked Goods
  • Children’s Crafts
  • Christmas Tree Lane
  • Raffles

This year's festivities will feature a special book signing by Mother Dolores Hart, O.S.B.! Mother Dolores will be signing and selling copies of her autobiography, The Ear of the Heart: An Actress' Journey from Hollywood to Holy Vows. She will be with us on Friday from 3:00-8:00 p.m. and Saturday from 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. 

Mother Dolores Hart, O.S.B., is a Benedictine nun at the Abbey of Regina Laudis in Bethlehem, Connecticut. During her seven-year career in film and on Broadway she starred in ten films, most notably opposite Elvis Presley in Loving You and King Creole, the hugely popular Where the Boys Are and Saint Francis of Assisi. 

She was nominated for a Tony Award for her performance in The Pleasure of His Company. Her radical choice to enter a cloistered Abbey at the height of her career in 1963 at first shocked and then inspired those who admired her as an actress and public figure. 

Since entering the monastery Mother Dolores has played a key role in the education and formation of new community members and in developing the community’s apostolic out-reach, including founding “The Gary –The Olivia Theater on the Abbey grounds in collaboration with actors such as Academy Award winner Patricia Neal. 

In recognition of her commitment to promote excellence in the arts and serve the Church through her profession, Mother Dolores has received three Honorary Doctorates, from Fairfield University, Loyola Marymount, and Holy Family University, as well as numerous awards from the church, including the Christopher Life Achievement Award. 

She is also a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. 

Since 1970 Mother Dolores has been the Dean of Education at Regina Laudis. In this role, she has established a new expression of St. Benedict’s School of the Lord’s Service in which contemporary professional women can be awakened to the classical precepts of monastic life through an arduous process of self-knowledge and conversion of heart. 

The HBO Documentary Film God is the Bigger Elvis about Mother Dolores’ remarkable story was nominated for a 2012 Academy Award in the Documentary Short category. Her acclaimed autobiography The Ear of the Heart: An Actress' Journey from Hollywood to Holy Vows was released in 2013 and is now in its third printing.