Friday, June 21, 2024

Helping Hands Christian Service Program

The Corporal Works of Mercy
Feed the Hungry
Give Drink to the Thirsty
Clothe the Naked
Shelter the Homeless
Visit the Sick
Visit Those in Prison
Bury the Dead
The Spiritual Works of Mercy
Instruct the Ignorant
Counsel the Doubtful
Admonish Sinners
Bear Wrongs Patiently
Forgive All Injuries
Comfort the Sorrowful
Pray for the Living and the Dead

The Call to Serve:

As the Body of Christ, the Church, we are the hands and feet, heart, eyes, voice and ears of Christ. As members of His Body, we answer the call to love and to serve the Lord. This mission is rooted in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, “whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did it for Me.” (Matthew 25: 40)

St. Vincent de Paul was often quoted as saying, “What must be done?” We follow the example of our patron saint and encourage our students to ask this same question. Christian Service hours provid­e concrete opportunities for all students to build community by serving others as Jesus did.


  • To provide a direct connection of the face of Christ to the needy.
  • To offer experiences which expose students to areas that need social transformation.
  • To provide the opportunity for students to engage in responsible action which leads to the enrichment of all.
  • To help each student shift his/her focus beyond individual needs, thus deepening his/her commitment to serve others.
  • To encourage family participation in and support of the Helping Hands Christian Service Program.
  • To participate in school-wide Christian Service projects.
  • To participate in quarterly visits to local care centers as a class.
  • To participate individually through the Helping Hands Christian Service Requirement.


Grade 6: 1 hour verified service per quarter (4 total)
Grade 7: 2 hours verified service per quarter (8 total)
Grade 8: 3 hours verified service per quarter (12 total)

Completed Helping Hands Form (electronic), project (writing, slideshow, video, poster, or other project as agreed upon ahead of time by the student and Mrs. Howa-Johnson) and oral presentation to the student’s class.

Helping Hands service must follow the “Acceptable Service” guidelines below.  If there is any question regarding service projects, please clear them through Mrs. Howa-Johnson.

Acceptable Service:

The purpose of Christian service is to encourage the students to reach beyond the limits of home and family, offering service to others based on the Works of Mercy.  Therefore, while help within home and family is applauded and encouraged, it does not fulfill the Helping Hands obligation. Unpaid service to family and friends outside of the home is permitted. For example, raking leaves for a grandparent or babysitting a cousin.

Projects must be school/parish or community based, and reflection forms must be completed and submitted by the student by the end of the quarter in which the service was completed.

Students follow their parent’s lead – if parents serve students will too. Consider completing student Helping Hands service together as a family. Talk to Mrs. Howa-Johnson if you need service organization suggestions.

A Few Service Ideas:

St. Vincent’s de Paul Parish and School have many opportunities for students to fulfill their Christian Service responsibilities. Listed below are just a few possibilities:

  • Help with Extended Day, such as cleaning, mopping, sweeping, vacuuming
  • Help teachers in their classrooms
  • Tutor younger students
  • Church ministry, such as altar serving, helping with music or readings, etc.
  • Volunteer to assist after school in various office or maintenance projects
  • Yard patrol; pick up trash, etc. from schoolyard and playground
  • Assist organizations within the parish such as the Knights of Columbus or Religious Education; Call Ildiko Haycock in the Parish Office at (801) 272-9216 for more information
  • Vacation Bible School during the summer; Middle School students are needed to help organize younger students

Local nonprofit organizations such as:

  • The St. Vincent de Paul Soup Kitchen
  • The Road Home Homeless Shelter
  • Catholic Community Services of Utah
  • The Humane Society of Utah
  • The Utah Food Bank
  • The American Red Cross