Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of December 3, 2007
Youth group feed the hungry in memory of Ukrainian famine
St. Basil's young people made sandwiches for 150 St. Jerome pupils
By RAMON GONZALEZ
- WCR photo by Ramon Gonzalez
Knights of Columbus member Steve Chichak ladles out homemade soup to hungry St. Jerome Grade 2 students.
St. Jerome principal Marilyn Landerville was happy the young people at St. Basil were able to connect the famine with the reality of her school.
"We have many students at our school who have suffered from not having enough to eat - not to the extent the people in the Ukraine did - but here there are many students that do not have the nourishment that they need each day," she said.
"It is various reasons. The families have come from another country and have to find a job. What they have at home isn't the same as anybody else has at home. It's difficult for them to get enough for everyone in their family."
According to Landerville, half of the school population of 149 students may have difficulty getting enough food on a regular basis.
Prystajecky, one of the priests at St. Basil, went from classroom to classroom explaining the famine in a language children could understand.
"It makes me feel sad that a government could starve their own people," said Grade 5 student Marc Sellers. "But I'll remember this day, Nov. 23, as a day when we mark the starvation death of millions of people in Ukraine."
Sellers, 10, vowed to share his newly acquired knowledge of the Ukrainian Famine with his parents and friends.
The hot lunch at St. Jerome was one of dozens of similar activities taking place across the province to mark the 75th anniversary of the famine.
In September, Bishop David Motiuk of the Edmonton Ukrainian Catholic Eparchy called on the faithful of the eparchy to mark the anniversary by feeding the poor of today.
The 37-member youth group of St. Basil's decided to focus on St. Jerome because they have been working with the school for two years and know many students do not have enough food in their homes, explained youth director Daryl Chichak.
The youth group raised $300 through a weekend bazaar - funds to make 150 sandwiches of ham, cheese and pickles in a kaiser bun.
Knights' member Larry Dominiuk, a former cooking instructor at NAIT, made the soup.
"We just wanted to show that kids can help other kids out too all through the remembrance of this 75th anniversary of the famine in Ukraine," Chichak said. "What a beautiful act of social justice to help other children," added principal Landerville.
"They could have stayed home watching the hockey game but they chose to come here to make the sandwiches. Even more remarkable is that they decided that the money they raised was going to be spent helping other children."
Our mission: To serve our readers by bringing the Gospel to bear on current issues in the Church and in secular culture through accurate news coverage and reflective commentary.