Monday, November 17, 2008

Project Hope and Compassion

Today I'd like to introduce you to Project Hope and Compassion. This is a Katrina-relief organization headquartered in Gulfport, Mississippi.

Yesterday at 5 AM I took Big Brother to school. He was packed and ready to spend a week in Mississippi with 16 other students and 4 faculty members. They'll work 8 hours a day in the rebuilding effort.

It was really dark and cold at 5 AM yesterday, but the kids didn't care. They were excited to begin their big adventure. They all piled into the school bus and headed for the airport. After they landed in New Orleans, they stopped at the Cafe du Monde before setting off for Mississippi. They will sleep at St. Ann's Church in (to a Boy Scout) luxurious, indoor accommodations. (Translation: there are showers, a "flushie" and even laundry facilities.)

In January 1986, I traveled through that part of the country on my way to a National Catholic Student Coalition meeting in Louisiana. Mississippi and rural Louisiana look nothing like suburban New Jersey. I think it will be an eye-opener to him to see that not everyone in the country lives like he and his friends do. (I thought about having him watch "My Cousin Vinny" before his departure, but never got the chance.)

I know he is off doing a very good thing, but the house feels pretty empty without him here. Please keep him and the other volunteers in your prayers, that they will have a safe trip and that they'll learn what it means to make a difference.

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