|7/25/2017 1:55:00 PM|
St. Pius X students fight malaria
|Courtesy St. Pius X School|
Fourth-grade teacher Mary Bogan and fourth-graders Genevieve Sandmeyer and Amelia Kowalewski present a donation to Fr. Freddy Ocun for a medical center in Uganda.
According to the World Health Organization, more than 400,000 people die of malaria each year, but with advanced efforts in prevention and treatment, more than 3 million lives have been saved in the past decade. This was the message Father Freddy Ocun, director of pastoral services at Providence St. Vincent Medical Center in Portland and founder and advocate for the Showers Medical Center in Uganda, gave fourth-graders of St. Pius X School in Portland earlier this spring.
The medical center lacks resources, especially in the area of malaria and cholera prevention and treatment. The children listened — and then took action.
Beginning last fall, and with the help of Franciscan Sister Mary Peter Duyck, students made rosaries and wrote spiritual poems for a booklet, all of which were included in donation kits to raise money for the center. Fifty-eight students participated and raised more than $1,000, for a total of more than $1,700 with matching funds.
In addition to being a lesson on the implications of social justice, the project emphasized God’s call to mission, said fourth-grade teacher Mary Bogan. “It was an example of benevolence and altruism at work in some of our very youngest Catholics,” she said.
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