Community services are part of the Religious Education program. Students from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade participate in different services within the Xavier community and beyond. The community services include setting up snacks for all students, cleaning the room where we meet to consume snacks, helping in the Welcome Table (Xavier soup kitchen), helping in Xavier shelter, organizing campaigns to collect clothing for the needy, making cards to send to refugee mothers on Mother’s Day through Jesuit Refugee Service, and preparing bags of food for the Food Pantry.
Serving on Sunday 9 am Mass
Actively participating in the liturgy is also a way for members of the Family Faith program to serve the community. Children, teenagers, and adults of the Family Faith program serve in the Sunday liturgy at 9 am according to their age as hospitality ministers, lectors, altar servers, in the Family Faith choir, Eucharistic ministers and Mass coordinators.
Corporal Works of Mercy
Confirmation candidates do a series of service projects based on the seven Corporal Works of Mercy. Examples of community services include: give food to the hungry by helping at the parish’s food pantry, donate their time – and their own clothes – to their Clothing Center, hand out tens of thousands of bottles of water and juice to participants of the New York AIDS Walk, and visit the “imprisoned” by reaching out to more than a hundred homebound people through handmade birthday cards distributed through God’s Love We Deliver or collecting books to build a library in a correctional facility in Westchester. Students, after research, focus on helping in a worldwide need. The 2011 Confirmation Class, for example, put Jesus’ call to “Give drink to the thirsty,” into action by providing a water purification system to a desperately poor community in Cambodia. In just 15 days 9 Confirmation Candidates age 12 and 13 raised $8,500 to build a water purification system that has been providing clean water to 1,000 people for a decade.