By Dc. Gary DiLallo

Maine — The sixth- through eighth-grade Religious Education classes at Most Holy Rosary parish were on a mission! 

Over the years, the classes raised funds to help a variety of charities like Mom’s House, Room with a View and Danielle House.

So how do they do it? Just as they did in the past. Bake sales, collecting cans and bottles and other innovative ways to help others.

Killian Keesler and friends are on a mission announcing the Bottle and Can Drive on Nov. 21, 2021: Isabelle Alfarano, Killian Keesler and Madison Freeman, with Father Clarence Cerwonka in the background. (Photos courtesy Carmen Gumble)

The class sets a goal of at least $500. The youth are focused, not on themselves but on taking care of others in the community. Last year they raised $700 in refundable bottles and cans with the proceeds to benefit the Mercy House of the Southern Tier. Mercy House calls itself “a community care shelter which provides a home and a supportive family to people with terminal illnesses who can no longer remain at home.”

Teacher Carmen Gumble has been involved with the youth at MHR parish for 13 years. They are excited to continue doing something worthwhile for the community. The students who participated in this noteworthy project were Isabelle Alfarano, Daniel Brown, Madison Freeman, Killian Keesler, and Colleen Steele.

Mr. Gumble said: “What I enjoyed about the project is the dedication and enthusiasm displayed by the students. The students researched local charities, had spirited discussions and selected the local charity to help. They then debated the type of fundraiser to have. From there they planned and organized the fundraiser. I feel our youth are a very important part to our success as a parish and our faith. To see their eagerness to help others and the joy they had towards the project, is a reassuring sign.” Upon accepting the check presented to him, Father Clarence Rumble, founder of Mercy House, expressed his gratitude, saying, “Mercy House has been in existence since  2016 and they have cared for over 700 residents.”

Deacon Gary DiLallo is the pastoral associate and business administrator at Most Holy Rosary Church in Maine.

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