Two Rivers youth celebrate Catholic Schools Week by collecting donations

By Benjamin Wideman | For The Compass | February 5, 2015

Hundreds of items blessed, donated to Domestic Violence Center

TWO RIVERS — When Stuart Gavin saw the amount of items waiting for him at St. Peter the Fisherman School, he knew he should have brought a larger vehicle.
“There sure are a lot of things,” he said. “This might take two trips now.”
Gavin, the development director for the Manitowoc County Domestic Violence Center, was on hand at the Catholic school on Friday, Jan. 30, for a blessing of hundreds of items donated for his facility by students, staff and faculty — and all of their families — as part of a service project during Catholic Schools Week.

All of the classes took part in the week-long event and joined Fr. Tom Reynebeau, pastor of St. Peter the Fisherman Parish, in blessing the items that were displayed on the gymnasium stage. Donated items ranged from food to batteries to vacuum cleaners to diapers to cell phones.

Students at St. Peter the Fisherman School raise their arms to help Fr. Tom Reynebeau bless the items that were donated to the Manitowoc County Domestic Violence Center during Catholic Schools Week. (Benjamin Wideman | For The Compass)
Students at St. Peter the Fisherman School raise their arms to help Fr. Tom Reynebeau bless the items that were donated to the Manitowoc County Domestic Violence Center during Catholic Schools Week. (Benjamin Wideman | For The Compass)

“There are a lot of things that happen to us out in the world that we’re going to need other people’s help,” Fr. Reynebeau told the assembled children in kindergarten through eighth grade. “So, as we bless these items, know that we’re also blessing you and blessing our lives. Because as others need help and we can help them, someday they may come back to us and help us in our time of need.”

Karolyn Efferson, principal at St. Peter the Fisherman, said each class had a list of items they were responsible for collecting. She said the effort of everyone involved was wonderful to see.

“I’m very proud of everyone, especially to know the items they’ve brought in are going to help people who can really use them,” she said.

The Manitowoc County Domestic Violence Center has a location in Manitowoc that can help up to 20 people at any given time. A new location — a larger facility able to accommodate more people in need — is being built in Manitowoc, closer to the border with Two Rivers, and is scheduled for completion this spring.

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