Pillars of Faith Installed

In the coming days and weeks, you might notice some changes to the look of things around Saint Andrew. 32 pillars will be placed around the campus in a project that began as a campus beatification effort.

Heather Gentile-Collins is the point person on this project that has involvedIMG_2343 many volunteers from Saint Andrew. An artist herself, Heather has coordinated the effort to have 150 children and parents paint these poles over the last three weeks. Together the families put their own work into creating these beautiful pillars of faith.

The project began when our school principal, Al Ackerman approached Heather with an idea to add a Peace Pole somewhere on our campus. Heather did research about the movement, including discovering the World Peace Prayer Society.

“There entire movement is about creating a visible sign to people to remind them to respond to one another in peace.” said Heather.

She began to craft the idea and garner approval from parish leadership to organize a campaign as part of Wearin’ the Green in which families and organizations could sponsor a pole.

IMG_2349In the end, the 32 pillars have been sponsored by 21 families, and several organization including our local Girl Scout troop, the Eighth Grade Class of 2016, One Heart Uganda, and others.

Ray Piazzi of Piazzi Building and Remodeling  helped to coordinate the purchase of materials and donated time to oversee the installation. Parterre Urban Landscape Design followed up with an offer to complete the four gardens in which the poles would be placed. In the end the project will cost about $4,000 but through Wearin’ the Green, a total of $12,000 has been donated to both beautifying the campus and raising money for our operating costs.IMG_2346

“When we started, Mr. Ackerman thought this would be something to help beautify the campus, but it has turned into more of a testament of who we are,” said Heather, after several days of helping families paint the poles.

To be sure, the poles not only advocate for peace, but are branded with many images and icons representing the Saint Andrew Community. Fr. Sergio Romo provided quotes from scripture to solidify a spiritual component to the project as well as quotes from Mother Theresa and Ghandi reminding all who read them to consider peace as our greatest imperative.

So the next time you go by Saint Andrew and see the new poles, be sure to take a moment to pray, giving thanks for the generous donors and vision that brought this project together, but also for the hope that peace might spread everywhere and to everyone.

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