Lenten Service Drive lends supports to Sacramento

Plank Article Jason De Guzman ’25

From Feb. 27 to March 31, Jesuit High School Sacramento’s Office of Service and Justice (OSJ) is hosting the Lenten Service Drive, which combines a donation drive and special events for education on justice.

Every two weeks, the “donation theme” changes. From Feb. 27 to March 9, the theme was hygiene kits. Each class was tasked with bringing in different items that could be combined to form hygiene kits for Loaves and Fishes and the Wellspring Women’s Center. From March 13 to March 23, fleece fabric is being collected to make fleece tie blankets. Lastly, non-perishable breakfast items will be collected from March 27 to March 31 and will also be donated to Loaves and Fishes.

Theology teacher Ms. Gabriella Carroll, who also works in OSJ, explains how donating to help others in need actually aligns perfectly with the theme of Lent.

“Service is actually one of the three pillars of Lenten practice,” Ms. Carroll said. “Lent reminds us that we should care for our neighbor in need, whomever it is or whatever the situation is.”

Lent is ultimately about preparing ourselves for Easter, the season in the Liturgical Calendar that celebrates the resurrection of Christ. A variety of actions, including almsgiving, help us prepare. Almsgiving is when we donate money, food, or other materials goods to those in need.

“On this path of inner conversion, we are called to practices of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving to help us on this journey,” said OSJ faculty member Ms. Katie Maynard. “The invitation of the Lenten Service Drive is primarily an opportunity to give alms to those in need and to support our partner agencies which serve the marginalized community in Sacramento.” 

Food donations, in particular, are a great way to help serve the community. Administrative Assistant for the Office of Service and Justice and Campus Ministry Ms. Jessica Fuentes knows that the food donations will be a vital piece of feeding the community.

“The food items donated will help serve homeless folks breakfast at Friendship Park [in Loaves and Fishes],” Ms. Fuentes said. “Companies, churches, and groups volunteer to donate and serve approximately 200 breakfasts [to guests at Friendship Park], but when the calendar is not filled by a group, there isn’t any food service that morning. That’s where our [Lenten] donations come into play.”

The other half of the Lenten Service Drive consists of a variety of events for the Jesuit community. There are informational meetings and multiple opportunities for students to collect and sort donations.