Hands Full of Heart - Spring Sophomore Service Day
For over 30 years, St. Mary's has sent students out on the Hands Full of Heart Service Day to practice what is taught within our walls: commitment to social justice and service. It is within our mission as an SNJM school to prioritize ways for our students to stay in touch with the community and lend a helping hand to those in need. Hands Full of Heart is a bi-annual service day specifically for the senior class in October, and the Sophomore class in May.
Last month, our sophomore Teacher Advisory (TA) groups visited service sites across the city to affirm our commitment to liberating action, experience the healing power of human connection and spread love throughout our community. This service opportunity serves as a day of bonding and team building in more intimate peer groups.
Teams of 15-20 students work with their hands (and hearts) to serve the elderly, care for children, tend to the earth, and feed the unhoused through these twelve nonprofits:
Portland Parks and Rec Ivy Removal
Helen Gordon Child Development Center
St. James Child Development
St. Mark's Lutheran Church
Clay Street Table
Children's Book Bank
St. Andrew Nativity
City Kids Child Development
St. Andrew’s Church
Prior to their small group departure, Director of Service, Caitlyn Witty shared with students the tradition and care of this day, “We are a community of faith that gathers here to serve those who are the most in need. Today, we will serve the elderly, children in early childhood, the houseless and hungry and our environment.” She then asked students to center themselves and prayed, “God help us to remember to be present in this day dedicated to serving others so that we can fully participate in the rejuvenating power of service and human connection.”
We are grateful for these partner organizations and this longstanding tradition for our students.