Recently, the Mount Mercy Academy faculty and staff participated in a service retreat. The day began at the academy with a prayer service. The service highlighted the meaning of Mercy and the ways in which the foundress of the Sisters of Mercy, Catherine McAuley, created a legacy of mercy.
The faculty and staff were split up into small groups and then the groups spent the morning volunteering with six different Buffalo community partners. Service was provided at Ronald McDonald House of Buffalo, Salvation Army, City Mission, Journey’s End, Rooted in Love and St. Luke’s Mission of Mercy.
The volunteers at Ronald McDonald House, a place for families to stay when they have a child receiving care at a Buffalo hospital, made lunch for the guests. While at the Salvation Army, Mount Mercy’s volunteers prepared food bags and “Angel Tags,” which are distributed to local organizations for giving trees and other Christmas programs that allow community members to pick a tag and then provide an appropriate gift for a child. At the City Mission the group sorted clothing donations.
Volunteers at Journey’s End got to work on the urban farm, helping to organize and winterize the greenhouse. The greenhouse and surrounding area on the urban farm allows refugee families a space to farm. At Rooted in Love, members of the Mount Mercy staff helped organize clothing donations, packed food bags for children and took inventory in the pantry. The St. Luke’s team organized 40 boxes of clothing.
The day of service allowed the Mount Mercy personnel to address the critical concerns of the Sisters of Mercy. Lunch at an immigrant-owned restaurant culminated the day. The retreat was organized by Mount Mercy’s campus minister, Mary Colby.