(COVINGTON, La.) — In September, St. Paul’s School restarted taking Mission Collections every Wednesday to donate to the St. Paul’s Secondary School in Marsabit, Kenya. St. Paul’s, along with other Lasallian schools across the country and across the world, have made it a staple to donate money to twin schools in an underdeveloped countries where students are in need of a quality education.
“St. Paul’s, as a catholic school, has an obligation to help the less fortunate,” St. Paul’s President Bro. Ray Bulliard said. “And since the word “catholic” means universal, Catholic schools have routinely thought ‘out of the borders’ and tried to help the less fortunate in developing countries.”
According to Mission Collections coordinator Barrett Baumgartner, the Covington school’s mission collections are a big portion of the donations that the St. Paul’s Secondary School in Marsabit receives. St. Paul’s in Covington gives the donations to the families of the kids who go to the school in Kenya, and they are able to allocate the money however they want to cover whatever they need.
“They use the money to buy uniforms, books, and pay the kids’ tuitions if they cannot on their own,” Baumgartner said.
Because of the frequent donations, some of the money goes to pay the teachers there and buy new equipment for the classrooms.
“The St. Paul’s in Kenya is actually one of the top schools in Kenya,” Baumgartner said. “The kids that attend get a very good education, and the money that St. Paul’s sends there makes it possible for them to receive such an education.”
The Covington St. Paul’s students are very supportive of the mission collections, as well.
“I think it’s incredible how our donations help run an entire school. The twinning program is great,” senior Ben Hollingsworth said. Lasallian schools across the United States began the twinning programs twenty years ago to pair with other schools in an underdeveloped country.
The weekly mission collections have been an active part of Catholic schools for as long as Bro. Ray can remember.
“I remember donating to mission collections in my Catholic elementary schools and high school,” Bro. Ray said.
On average, SPS’s weekly mission collections typically bring in about $600-$700 a week according to school announcements.
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The following video chronicles an 11-day trip by Lasallian members of the District of Eastern North America (DENA) to visit St. Mary’s Secondary School in Nairobi, Kenya, and illustrates the positive impact of the Lasallian twinning program.
(Video Credit: Abel Guiterrez of Cathedral High School, Los Angeles, DENA)