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The Aquilian

The Aquilian

    Gonzaga holds first school-wide day of service; another to occur in spring

    Freshmen stayed on campus learning about what service means at Gonzaga and participating in making sandwiches. Photo from Gonzaga Flickr

    Like any other Holy Day, the Gonzaga student body attended Mass to celebrate the feast of the Immaculate Conception on Dec. 8. However, after the alma mater was sung and the pews were cleared, the classrooms remained empty. Instead of returning to campus for classes like normal, students instead dispersed throughout the Washington, D.C. area by foot, bus, van and Metro in hopes of serving the community. Thus began Gonzaga’s first-ever Day of Service.

    “Campus Ministry started working on this project beginning back in August,” said Ms. Danielle Flood, associate director of campus ministry. “We’ve been talking about it for a while. It had kind of been a dream idea for us.” 

    Once this “dream idea” came to fruition, most students scattered themselves amongst 40 service sites throughout the area. The service at these locations ranged from visiting the elderly to cleaning up local parks. The freshman class, however, remained on campus.

    “Because it was their first time, they needed an introduction,” Ms. Flood said. “We wanted to teach them what Gonzaga service is all about.” 

    On campus, the freshman class took a more passive approach to service. At their first activity, four seniors educated them on the importance of service. Additionally, they partook in activities that helped educate them on economic injustices and made packages to be handed out by Gonzaga’s Campus Kitchen program

    “[The activities] helped break open the topic of poverty in D.C.,” said Ms. Maddie Davin, assistant director of campus ministry. “It did so in a way that they haven’t had a chance to talk about before.”

    The main purpose of keeping the freshmen on campus was to open their eyes to the possibilities before them. The activities were all designed to teach so that one day they could act as leaders in the community.

    “The hope is that [the next Day of Service] we can send them out with the rest of the community,” Ms. Flood said. “Everyone partaking in the same mission at the same time […] To me, that’s what Gonzaga is all about.”

    Campus Ministry is hoping to develop a second Day of Service later in the second semester. This second day is likely to include opportunities for advocacy and extend to include more programs, such as S.O.M.E. The plan is to host this second day of service on the G-day on April 24, 2023, Ignatian Heritage Day. 

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      Wyatt CroogJan 27, 2023 at 11:43 am

      Liam Passey, this article proves that you are a man, a myth, and a legend of journalism. Keep up the good work buddy!