Throughout the month of March, flowers are going to grow a little faster and the sun is going to shine a little brighter.
Why not shine some light on mercy?
For the past three years, Mercyhurst University has had Mercy Week, but because there are many events, the celebration has been expanded to an entire month.
March is Mercy Month, which is a month dedicated to focusing on one of the core values of Mercyhurst University, which is the one that states we are socially merciful.
Being socially merciful means restoring human dignity and expanding our social relations. Mercy empowers us to reach out in compassion to others.
Director of Campus Ministry Greg Baker explained how Mercyhurst students can be socially merciful. He said that many students already incorporate mercy into their day-to-day lives.
“Mercy Month just gives us an opportunity to shine the light on it. The mercy tradition is not just historical, it is a living, current movement,” Baker said.
A committee of students, administrators and faculty have come together to create various events that are open to students and faculty.
Some of these events include Tour and Tea days at Mercy Mother house, the movie “The Help,” lunch discussion with Lhotshampa Refugees, a clothing drive, Religion and Prejudice discussions and the annual Wellness Fair.
There is also a portable campus labyrinth that will move around campus for a unique form of meditation.
Brittany Prischak, the sustainability coordinator, Earleen Glaser, reference librarian/college archivist, and Allison Elick from human resources are also creating an online resource for students, faculty and eventually the community to understand how to donate clothing to those in need. This initiative, called “donation matcher,” is about much more than clothing. This resource gives details about how to donate everything such as clothing, food and even household items.
This site will help educate people on the proper ways to participate in the clothing drive, along with donations of other goods, and will simply be a great resource for anybody who wants to embrace giving.
The donation matcher can be found on the Mercyhurst portal under “services.”
If you’re interested in attending one of the events and becoming involved with the celebration of mercy, “like” the Mercy Month Facebook page so you can receive more information about upcoming events.
The Facebook site also has a March calendar available, so you can pencil in the dates and times of events you are interested in attending. If you do not have a Facebook, there are several Mercy Month posters displayed on campus, or you can visit the Campus Ministry Office, which is located in the Herrmann Student Union, for more information.
Although Mercy Month is only until the end of March, there are still “Mercy-centered” events that occur throughout the entire school year.
“We should do this all the time – every month should be Mercy Month,” Baker said.
The month of April is Earth Month and Campus Ministry, along with the Green Team, are involved by supporting the St. Francis Pledge. The Catholic Coalition on Climate Change created the Catholic Climate Covenant to “take responsibility for our contribution to climate change.”
On Friday, March 30, Mercy Month is hosting its final event, the Annual Wellness Fair. At the fair, students can sign up to take the St. Francis Pledge, which is a promise and commitment to protect God’s Creation.
By taking the pledge, students are committing to follow the five elements: to pray, to learn, to assess, to act and to advocate.
Students interested in learning more about the St. Francis Pledge can visit the Catholic Climate Covenant website here or wait until the Annual Wellness Fair.
Whether you’re a student or faculty member, get involved and attend one of the Mercy Month events. It is a part of our University’s core values to be socially merciful, so it is important to live that way.
Mercy should not just be celebrated for a single month. This is a great way to shine the light on something good.