On Wednesday, February 13, Gonzaga students participated in a day-long celebration of St. Aloysius Gonzaga, who died 450 years ago after going out into the streets of Rome to tend to plague victims. In an all-school Mass to begin the day, Father Planning spoke about St. Aloysius’ extraordinary compassion despite organized opposition to it. “Compassion for those in need is the core of the heart of Christ, and is the true embodiment of living as a man for and with others,” he said.
With this idea in mind, students were invited to learn more about “modern day plagues” in our own community, including homelessness, hunger, social isolation, and incarceration. In the morning, seniors visited a number of local nonprofit and community service organizations including DC Central Kitchen, the Poverty Clinic at Georgetown University Law School, AARP DC, and DC Tenant/Landlord Court.
Meanwhile, on campus, there were several panel discussions and special guest speakers for freshman, sophomores, and juniors to attend. Representatives from Housing Up, S.O.M.E, McKenna Center, NETWORK, Catholic Charities, Northwest Pregnancy Centers, Christ House, and more led discussions with students.
In the afternoon, students gathered to reflect on the day. Henry Sullivan ’20 shared: “One takeaway that I had was that as we all leave Gonzaga and find our vocations as doctors, lawyers, actors, or whatever else, that we always remember the poor.”
Jorge Santana ’19 added, “As Gonzaga men, it’s important that we stay educated on these issues and do whatever we can to help in our own way.”
We hope you enjoy these photos from the day: