Catholic school students respond to COVID-19 with community service projects

Guest post submitted by Amy Sokol, principal at St. Anthony Catholic School in Columbus, Nebraska.

We are always looking for ways to have our students make a difference in others’ lives and to evangelize at the same time.  We recently studied the Anointing of the Sick and the Corporal Works of Mercy. So with the news of COVID-19, our fourth through sixth graders made “Get Well” and “Thinking of you cards” to send to patients in quarantine at University of Nebraska Medical Center.  The response that we heard from UNMC was amazing.  Patients have been reaching out to us and telling us how their card is what helped them make it through their quarantine.  Nurses shared with us that several patients cried when they received their cards.

Our school community continued to make cards and send them to hospitals all over including a hospital in Denver.

To continue our “Angels in Action” project, we had the students make thank you cards and pictures for our local Columbus hospital thanking all of the healthcare workers for keeping us safe.  The posters were hung in the windows of the employee’s entrance. We heard from one nurse who said, “a big thank you to the St. Anthony’s Angels for their pictures during this time.  They are up in the hospital windows.  You and your teaching staff are wonderful.”

Our newest project is making thank you cards and pictures for truck drivers thanking them for their long hours and getting us the things that we need. The Nebraska State Patrol offered to help hand them out, and we can’t wait to get them to the truck drivers.

When we asked our students about what they have learned with all of these projects, these are some of things that we heard. 

“It is amazing how something so little can make such a big difference in someone’s life.” 
“I wanted them to know with my card that Jesus is with them no matter what, and He loves them very much.” 
“I wanted people to know that I am praying for them, and I do not even know them.” 
“I wanted to tell people that if they keep praying and trusting in God that He will take care of them.”

As we continue to look for ways for our students to make a difference in the lives of others, we know that the students are learning life-long lessons of what it means to be a disciple of Jesus – even while at home.


St. Anthony Catholic School is one of three Catholic elementary schools in Columbus. Visit the school’s Facebook page for the latest from their students and staff.  And visit to learn more about our schools.