Acts of service become personal for local Regis Jesuit students
Regis Jesuit juniors Tim Shanahan, Jake Ciafone and Collin Stover spent two weeks working with abused and neglected children for their service project. Knowing what the kids have gone through and what they still face has definitely been the hardest part,” stated Ciafone.
Article and photo by Amy Shanahan
“Men and Women With and For Others,” is the motto for Regis Jesuit High School (RJHS). This commitment to serving others is most evident during the weeks immediately following the holiday break. During this time, all junior and senior students participate in service projects in which they spend two full weeks serving the poor and marginalized.
The Jesuit tradition of service to others began with the founding of the Jesuit order of Catholic priests by St. Ignatius Loyola in the year 1540. The order focused on missionary work serving those most in need. This tradition continues today at Jesuit schools throughout the country, and RJHS has incorporated this tradition into its curriculum. Freshman and sophomore students are required to fulfill a specific number of service hours “for others” by working with agencies that serve the poor and marginalized, while juniors and seniors fulfill their service hours “with others” by working directly with these members of our society.
Juniors and seniors spend their two weeks serving at organizations throughout the Denver metro area that serve the elderly, children with special needs, at-risk youth, and at-risk adults. Additionally, opportunities to serve abroad are provided with a trip to Belize having occurred this year.
Castle Pines resident and RJHS junior Ben Lordi spent two weeks at the Mile High Montessori, which services at-risk youth. He remarked, “My favorite part about service projects has been working with the kids, (ages three to five) and helping them out and seeing them playing and being so happy despite their tough situation. They have such a great outlook on life!”
Tim Shanahan and Jake Ciafone, also RJHS juniors, spent their time at The Tennyson Center, which services abused and neglected children. “This has been a good opportunity to work with a group of people and kids who we normally don’t come into contact with,” remarked Ciafone. “It has been hard to go through on an emotional level, but it has overall been a very positive experience.”
To learn more about Regis Jesuit High School, visit www.regisjesuit.com.