Students and staff members visited several non-profits within the Cedar Rapids community, including Saint Wenceslaus Church, Taft Middle School's Butterfly Garden, Matthew 25 Ministries, and right on campus for maintenance and beautification.
From helping with yard work to prepping rooms for residents and special events at church, Mount Mercy students took advantage of the fall weather to not only spruce up campus, but assist a few non-profits in the community.
"I am excited to see students taking an active role in the community," says Brooke Oehme, Mount Mercy's coordinator of volunteerism and service learning. "The more they encounter the needs of others, the bigger their world becomes."
"Serving sets a tone for people, it helps them become who they are and helps them realize how good service feels," says Dave Martin, parish manager at St. Wenceslaus Church, who worked with a team of Mount Mercy students and faculty as they prepared for the church's annual festival, Czech Goulash Day.
"It's great to be able to give back to the community, which has already given me so much," says Mount Mercy senior Wes Weary, who worked on campus to help clean and maintain the Sisters of Mercy Convent and Our Lady of Sorrows Grotto.
Teams spread out on Saturday morning and returned to campus at noon to celebrate the closing of the week with refreshments, music, and ice cream.
Mercy and Mission week allows the campus community to not only reflect on the unique Mercy heritage of the institution, but to live it out within the community and with each other in a spirit of volunteerism and service.
Service to the community is a key component of Mount Mercy's mission. The service activities provided students with an opportunity to experience in a tangible way the calling of the Sisters of Mercy and to gain a deeper understanding of the institution's mission.
Other noteworthy events that took place during Mercy and Mission week included an Inter-Faith Prayer Service on September 20, which invited representatives of different faith groups to share what Mercy means in their faith traditions, and a keynote address by Sister Marilyn Lacey, RSM, executive director of Mercy Beyond Borders.
To view photos of the service projects, visit Mount Mercy's Facebook page.