The Diocese of Allentown has launched the “Make a Joyful Noise” campaign to celebrate Catholic school spirit throughout Berks, Carbon, Lehigh, Northampton, and Schuylkill counties. Schools engage in friendly competition to raise the most funds and to get the most participation.
Voting opened on May 1 at midnight.
The idea for this campaign was inspired by “Cooks with Collars,” a successful fundraiser that raised a total of $305,110 for parishes and Catholic Charities of the Diocese. “Schools wanted something for themselves,” said Ginny Downey, Major and Planned Gift Officer of the Diocese of Allentown. Principals were looking for a way to showcase what makes their schools unique.
The name of the campaign is derived from Psalm 100:1, “Shout joyfully to the Lord.” Some translations render it, “Make a joyful noise unto the Lord.”
Each school has a fundraising page where people can watch a video, make a donation, and cast a vote. “All the money stays in the schools,” said Downey. There is no limit to how many times people can vote, and they are encouraged to vote for multiple schools.
The goal of this campaign is to “continue to grow the Catholic school community,” said Downey. About 25 schools have participated.
“We were very excited from the beginning,” said Mrs. Susan Parker, Principal of Good Shepherd Catholic School, Northampton. She explained that they tried to show as much as they could of their school and took this as an opportunity for a farewell to their eighth grade class. “We are a close-knit community with 300 students, but what we did brought us together as a school family.” One of the pastors told Mrs. Parker that this will be a memory that the kids will have forever. They are already thinking of a song for next year’s video.
The video by St. Joseph Center for Special Learning, Pottsville showcases their new building. “It was a lot of fun!” said Mr. Bob Giba, Principal of the school. St. Joseph Center for Special Learning serves children and adults with special needs. Mr. Giba hopes that their video celebrates their students and brings awareness of their needs.
Voting will end on Tuesday, May 31. There will be two winners. First place will go to the “Maestro” for raising the most money. Second place will go to the “First Chair Winner” for participation.
Come and make a joyful noise with us by voting at the campaign’s website www.weloveourcatholicschools.com all throughout May.