Students across Diocese all smiles on annual Day of Service

From Staff Reports

THE JOY OF GIVING • Students in St. Joan of Arc School, Marlton, enjoy packing items for the April 27 Day of Service. Joe Moore photo

The Diocese’s 31 Catholic elementary schools were abuzz with excitement April 27 as its students filled bags with toys, books, puzzles, snacks and more as part of the annual Day of Service.

This year, schools were dedicated to a single service project – “Hearts to Hospitals: Hearts to Lead – Hands to Help,” collecting over the past month items for sick children, their families and caregivers in about a dozen hospitals spanning Burlington, Mercer, Monmouth and Ocean Counties. As of April 27, the schools had collected more than 6,000 items and at least $3,000 with an additional $3,000 in gift cards.

Photo Gallery: St. Joan of Arc School

In St. Peter School, Point Pleasant Beach, coordinator Lynn Faugno explained that in addition to the more than 1,000 items collected, the Knights of Columbus gave a monetary donation, and students raised more than $3,000 by canning – standing outside their cohort parishes with a bucket asking for donations.

“The generosity was overwhelming,” Faugno said as the school filled with the energetic voices of children stuffing bags with goodies while others grabbed crayons to make bookmarks and cards for patients and caregivers.

JoAnn Tier, diocesan superintendent of Catholic schools, stood nearby, leaning over a table as an 8-year-old girl packed treats into a small bag.

“Do you think a little girl who is about 8 years old would love this?” Tier asked with a smile.

“Yes,” the girl said shyly, as Tier responded with, “Well thank you so much.”

In Our Lady of Sorrows School, Hamilton, principal Maureen Tuohy explained how in years’ past, each school held its own service project.

“This is much more than just a school event; this year, I felt much more community. I know we made an impact last year, but this? This should make a huge impact,” she said, adding that the items collected exceeded the bags the school was given to fill.

She said she the school took the “Hearts to Hospitals” theme to heart, with students praying for the sick children and discussing what it was like to be in a hospital.

More Photo Galleries!

See photos from St. Peter School, Our Lady of Sorrows, St. Joseph and more!

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