The Spirit of Service is Alive at St. Rose of Lima Catholic School
For the past 20 years, our 8th grade students have been serving a meal on the fourth Friday of each month (for 250 Fridays and counting!) at the Eastern Delaware County Drop In Shelter at 63rd and Market Streets.
This service project tradition began a little over 20 years ago, when Sister Ann Peter, IHM, was missioned to teach 7th grade at Saint Rose of Lima Catholic School. She came to us from Saint Charles School in Drexel Hill where she taught in the grade school and worked with the high school youth group. At the time, Saint Rose of Lima had a high school youth group which was recognized by the Youth Department of the Archdiocese as the number one program. Sister Ann Peter plugged right into it and helped us with overnight retreats and the beginning of this service project.
We have always introduced our oldest students in school to the project thus encouraging them to continue through high school. There are about six students who will be entering 8th grade who have been engaged in the project this past half year.
Julian Baysmore mentioned, “The service project is a great way for people to give back to the community. What I love about the service project is that we are able to help people survive and give them another opportunity in life.”
Mimi Gala observed, “The service project is a great way to help others.”
Serving 160 meals at the shelter each visit is not cheap, it costs about $400 every month. We are blessed that Sister Barbara Farrell, SSJ, helps with the project and has submitted our efforts to her community, the Sisters of Saint Joseph of Chestnut Hill, for funding and the Sisters have given us a grant of about $4,000 each year for the last four years and this will continue this year with an increase to $4,800. People are so good to us!
We could not agree more with Riayn Little, an 8th grade student who shared, “The service project is a way for us to give back to the community and to see people enjoying their meal and having smiles on their faces is a wonderful thing!”