SOUTH PORTLAND---For nearly three years, the kindness and generosity of the Holy Cross School community has answered prayers from families over 8,000 miles away in Tsholotsho, Zimbabwe.
Since a chance visit by Holy Cross Principal Christine L’Abbé in March of 2015, the South Portland school has helped raise thousands and thousands of dollars for the Ngamo Primary and Secondary Schools in Tsholotsho. The proceeds have paid for new piping to provide fresh water for students; tuition assistance for students unable to afford the $10 trimester fee; renovations for the teachers’ cottage; clothing and sporting equipment for village families; and the completion of other projects.
As part of its celebration of Maine Catholic Schools Week (Jan. 28-Feb. 3), Holy Cross, located on 436 Broadway, will continue its contributions as its students square off in “Penny Wars.” For a week, students in each classroom will place pennies in their classroom jar. Students can then go to other classrooms and deposit silver change and dollar bills which will be subtracted from the total of the other classroom. One grade will emerge victorious.
“All of the money raised will be used to offer assistance in Tsholotsho,” said L’Abbé.
“Our students continue to learn that a small act of kindness can make a huge difference in the lives of others. The students will also write letters to Ngamo students telling them what it is like to go to school in Maine and answer questions the students in Zimbabwe sent to them.”
Students at Holy Cross will also collect donations for the South Portland Boys and Girls Club and the Animal Refuge League. Representatives from both organizations will attend a schoolwide prayer service at Holy Cross Church on Friday, February 2, at 9 a.m.
In addition to the service projects, many special events are scheduled, including a kickoff Mass at Holy Cross Church on Sunday, January 28, at 9:30 a.m.; gym games between grades; planetarium presentations; special assemblies with guest speakers; a student vs. faculty volleyball game; a roller skating field trip; and much more.
Maine Catholic Schools Week celebrates the mission of Catholic Schools: to evangelize students by nourishing faith and encouraging academic excellence while accentuating the importance of community and service in a nurturing environment. For a look at activities and projects taking place at other Catholic schools in Maine during Catholic Schools Week, click here.