Faith-inspired volunteerism

What do a kidney, a towel, a paintbrush, and cookies have in common? In this issue of The Catholic Post, they are all related to examples of faith-inspired volunteerism. We find it not coincidental but providential that this unplanned thread running through our pages this week came together as National Volunteer Week opens in the United States this Sunday, April 19.

The theme of this year’s observance is “Celebrating People in Action.” So we celebrate Msgr. Eric Powell, who donated a kidney to a parishioner on Monday because “I just didn’t want to see someone suffer unnecessarily when I had something that could potentially alleviate that for one decade, two decades.” May others consider organ donation.

We celebrate Court 956 of the National Catholic Society of Foresters for inviting members of Sacred Heart Parish in Moline to bring towels to the Holy Thursday liturgy to donate to an area women’s crisis center. May this creative charity spread.

We celebrate those from the Newman Center at Eureka College who used their spring break to lift hammers and paintbrushes, not beverages, to assist those still in need from the hurricanes that struck Louisiana. We celebrate Girl Scout Troop 4190 from Blessed Sacrament Parish in Morton for shipping 500 boxes of cookies to U.S. troops serving in Iraq or Afghanistan.

These volunteers, as well as the thousands of other “people in action” around our diocese they symbolize, are living examples of a response to Pope Benedict XVI’s Easter message challenge below. How is God calling you, and me, to spread Easter hope and affirm Jesus’ victory? This is a good week to consider the many opportunities. — Thomas J. Dermody, editor-in-chief, The Catholic Post

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