As summer drew to a close, the Eastern Diocese sent a gift of more than $18,500 to charities helping vulnerable children in America and Armenia. The gift was collected through the efforts of 22 Sunday Schools from across the Eastern Diocese, whose students, staffs, and families participated in the 2018 Diocesan Lenten Drive.
Benefiting from the contribution is Feeding America—the country’s leading domestic hunger-relief charity, which distributes food to some 46 million Americans each year—and a new initiative of the Fund for Armenian Relief to help disabled and special-needs children in rural Armenia, by providing them with nourishing food, physical aid devices, and transportation to educational facilities.
As usual, the Sunday School students were imaginative and energetic in their fundraising. They cooked dinners, prepared and sold Easter baskets, memorized Bible verses, tutored, auctioned chores, passed the hat at family gatherings—and diligently put aside their own funds to help their needy countrymen in Armenia and America.
Special recognition goes to the Diocese’s smallest Sunday School—at the Holy Virgin Mary and Shoghagat Church in Belleville, IL—which raised thousands of dollars for the 2018 Lenten Drive, as it does every year.
“All in all, this was an extraordinary opportunity to put the Gospel into loving action,” said Elise Antreassian of the Diocese’s Christian Education department.
“Our students learned to live out the beautiful words of Jesus from Matthew’s Gospel: ‘For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink … I tell you , whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me’” (Mt 25:37-40), she said.