Each year, the Lenten season presents an opportunity for Peer Ministers to lead Christian Brothers Academy students in a school-wide effort to benefit our community. This spring, CBA chose to support Vera House and McMahon Ryan Child Advocacy Center in their Lenten Drive. The effort concluded on April 3rd during Holy Week, prior to the schools spring recess. A grand total of over $5,500 was raised, along with awareness of the critical issues of domestic and child abuse.
Organized and administered by student Peer Ministry leaders,the objectives of the drive were twofold: to raise awareness and funding for two worthy local organizations. Peer Ministry, housed under Campus Ministry at CBA, encourages students to become involved in school liturgies, community service, and retreats. According to the CBA website, “Peer Ministry strives to make Gods love visible and active within the entire school Peer Ministers collected money weekly during homeroom for donation to both causes.
While Vera House works to help abused women, McMahon Ryan Child Advocacy Center helps children affected by domestic violence. Both organizations were chosen to be a part of the 2012 Lenten Drive because they strive to make a difference in the community and have goals that resonate with the CBA community.
The Social Justice division of Peer Ministry went to work planning assemblies, displays, and incentives for students to donate to the cause. The Vera House Silent Witness Exhibit, which told the stories of a dozen area domestic violence victims who lost their lives to domestic violence, lined the hallway in the Fine Arts Wing from February 29th until March 15th. The exhibit brought reality to an issue that is difficult to discuss.
The Lenten drive was initiated with a school-wide assembly, which brought the whole CBA family together to learn more about the two organizations. Representatives from Vera House talked to the students about the mission of their organization and personal testimonials from both faculty and students brought authenticity to the undertaking. A power point presentation showed the facility at McMahon Ryan Child Advocacy Center, where children can feel safe telling their story.
“We want to raise awareness for domestic violence and child abuse,” said Will Brower 13, a member of Peer Ministry. “Ultimately this will lead to creating a higher overall level of awareness in the community and let affected women know that help is always
Will Brower '13 and Ben Capella '13 help install the Silent Witness exhibit.