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The joy of giving
Students gather in front of Catholic Parish Outreach for Dress Down Day of Hunger.

Each day last week the display was on view for all to see in the main lobby. It comprised boxes of baby diapers and wipes as well as over 700 cans of sliced carrots neatly stacked in rows and proudly announcing its message, Take a slice out of hunger.

The display served as a visual reminder for our school community. Members of Franciscan  Youth International (FYI) created it for the fall Dress Down Day for Hunger canned food drive their club sponsored last Friday to benefit Catholic Parish Outreach (CPO).

The success of the display, and in turn the drive, can be measured in numbers. Our school community collected 9, 225 pounds of food and baby items. That total is over 1,000 pounds higher than the total collected last February, attesting to our community’s heartfelt desire to serve those in need.

“I love that we are encouraged to find creative ways to raise people’s awareness to the issue of hunger in the Triangle area”, said Molly Pennisi ’20. She together with Mollie Jordan ’21, Marianne Bahna ’21, and Grace Pickett ’22 were the student leaders who organized the November 22 drive.

The drive took inspiration from the prayer attributed to St. Francis of Assisi, “for it is in giving that we receive,” said Gary Meyerl ’82, director of Outreach Ministry. He also serves as co-moderator of FYI with theology educator Mark DeLaRosa and math educator Ursula Karazin.

The Gibbons chapter of FYI turned 15 this year. In that time, it has supported CPO with monthly visits and the bi-annual Dress Down Day for Hunger.

“Through our efforts at CPO, coupled with our regular presence at Shepherd’s Table Soup Kitchen and most recently taking our juniors to A Place at the Table, we at Gibbons recognize that we can and do make a difference in the lives of our brothers and sisters in need,” Meyerl explained.

It is with joy-filled intentions that our giving continues next week. That’s when the Cardinal Gibbons Chapter of the National Honor Society (NHS) will kick off the annual Toy & Clothing Drive, long a cherished holiday tradition.

So, in this season of giving thanks, let us bring the blessings of joy and encouragement to those most in need and share the gifts God has so generously bestowed on all of us.



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