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Turn to Jesus (Article)

School Community Reaches out to Katrina Victims
Pinecrest students, teachers and families inspired to help.

“The pupils of Pinecrest Academy sent 3275 stuffed animals to Mississippi and Louisiana  to comfort children who had lost everything.”
“The pupils of Pinecrest Academy sent 3275 stuffed animals to Mississippi and Louisiana to comfort children who had lost everything.”

Atlanta, GA, September 22, 2005. In recent weeks, Pinecrest Academy students have supported the victims of Hurricane Katrina in various ways - living the spirit of service that is an integral part of personal student formation at Pinecrest Academy. Faculty, Administrators, Students and families worked together to serve those affected by Hurricane Katrina. They collected a truckload of bottled water, 3275 stuffed animals to comfort children who had lost everything, 600 boxes of crayons and 400 coloring books to give children activity to help them cope. The entire Pinecrest Academy community offered prayers and masses. Students reached into their own piggy banks, and families sacrificed what they have to collect nearly $9000, which was donated, on behalf of Pinecrest Academy, to Catholic World Missions.

For the adult victims, students and parents put together “hygiene” packages that included deodorant, toothpaste and other toiletries to fulfill their most basic needs. Diapers, wipes, and other infant-care items were collected and loaded on a truck rented by generous Pinecrest Academy parents who drove these supplies to New Orleans and Mississippi. Pinecrest parents Mr. and Mrs. Robert Walker recently returned from delivering these supplies and a truckload of water to a town in Mississippi that was totally devastated by the eye of the hurricane. In a letter to the Pinecrest Academy families, they wrote, “We want you to know …things were so bad that there were no houses or buildings standing. People (stranded there) were digging through battered pantries to find enough food to survive. The day the Pinecrest truck arrived, the people were so unbelievably grateful. The items you donated did not go to a center, but directly to people who were starving, thirsty and completely devastated by the hurricane. As Archbishop Gregory said at mass yesterday, you truly let your light shine all the way to Mississippi. Your donations made such a difference to real people who were truly heartbroken and without hope. Additionally, your truck brought back a family who was relocating to Lilburn, Georgia. Thank you so much for your generosity.”

By their own initiative, several Pinecrest Academy families have opened their homes to evacuees. The school has also opened its doors to families who have temporarily relocated and seek to continue to provide for the educational needs of their children. Pinecrest Academy has expedited its admissions process to admit qualified applicants to the school. Faculty, staff and families have worked together to accommodate additional students in grades where we do not have space – all sacrificing for brothers and sisters in need, opening doors and hearts as Christ would desire us to do. The needs of the victims of Hurricane Katrina will continue for some time. Pinecrest Academy will continue to serve as long as there are needs to fill.



Related links

Altius Foundation
Catholic World Mission
Helping Hands Medical Missions
St Rafael Guizar y Valencia Missionary Center

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