Saint Pope John Paul II declared that Jesus Christ taught that, “man not only receives and experiences the mercy of God, but that he is also called to practice mercy towards other people.” Jesus gives us our marching orders, so the Our Lady of the Lakes Junior Class extended God’s compassion and mercy by serving at the Capuchin Services Center in Detroit during their annual retreat.
The students began with an information video that provided them the background and breadth of the Capuchin outreach. Student then were divided into two groups some serving in food distribution and others in the clothing distribution.
The Capuchins distribute over 10,000 pounds of food a day at the shopper’s choice food pantry which resembles a small grocery store complete with freezers and coolers, vegetable and fruit islands and bread and pastry racks. Lakers stocked the shelves, put eggs into cartons, and bagged fruits and vegetables into family size portions.
The Capuchin clothing distribution area also provides a “retail” feel for the guests’ shopping experience. Almost 2000 articles of clothing are distributed a day. Students separated clothing, hung the items on hangers, and organized holiday items for shoppers.
The students worked during the morning, then they traveled to Old St. Mary Church in Greektown for a 12:15 p.m. Mass. with Fr. Leroy Moreeuw, a precious Blood Priest. Father personalized his homily and welcomed Our Lady of the Lakes to the St. Mary Community. Following Mass, we were welcomed into their community room for food and fellowship. The hospitality they extended to us was warm and generous, and included a delicious meal.
The retreat was a blessed day; students and teachers alike loved the opportunity to put the Corporal Works of Mercy into action. Remembering the words of Jesus: “Whatever you did for one of these least brothers or sisters of mine, you did for me.”