Archbishop Howard School at St. Rose’s Aiden Lesh and Turner Boslar prepare sandwiches intended for the St. Francis Dining Hall. Each month, the school sends 150 or more sack lunches to the feeding site.
Archbishop Howard School at St. Rose’s Aiden Lesh and Turner Boslar prepare sandwiches intended for the St. Francis Dining Hall. Each month, the school sends 150 or more sack lunches to the feeding site.
Character is an essential component of education. If we raise scholars with no moral compass, we have failed. It is through service that students of Archbishop Howard School at St. Rose in Northeast Portland learn to live out virtues — the habit of doing good.

It starts as simply as helping each other with classwork. Before you know it, students are making a difference in the larger community as demonstrated by their work with St. Francis Dining Hall.

On the third Monday of every month, students are sent home with a simple brown paper bag. But what they send back to school the next day is much more. Many take time to color pictures or write encouraging notes on the bag. They drop in simple hygiene items that make a difference to someone on the street. They pack a meal for a complete stranger. Every month, staff are amazed by the generosity and kindness of students and families who fill the bags with nourishment—in the way of encouragement, food and faith—for those who otherwise might not have a meal or kind word that day.

The pre-kindergarten class takes this act of service seriously, making it an opportunity to grow in faith communally. Each month, parent volunteers enter the pre-k classroom and help students make sandwiches. They include tasty snacks — snacks they very well might like to eat themselves. Nevertheless, students pack up the snacks with the sandwich and send them with love to a stranger they’ll likely never meet. They do it with a joy that staff and teachers pray they carry with them for the rest of their lives.