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Mission Week: Change Begins Within
February 14, 2019
What happens during Mission Week
Mission Week 2019 kicks off Tuesday, Feb 19. The point of Mission Week is to use dress down days and fun events to raise money to help benefit different people in need. This years theme is: “Change Begins Within.”
“There’s a lot of different ways we can fight injustice,” Director of Student Activities Michael Russo said. “It’s not just about raising the money, we want to develop men that will hopefully go out and be leaders in the world with their compassion and actions.”
Everyone year Mission Week gives to different charities, this year the charities of choice are:
Kingdom House Academy: Helps the economically disadvantaged achieve economic independence, self-sufficiency, and a path out of poverty.
Leukemia and Lymphoma Society: LLS is at the forefront of the fight to cure cancer. Compared to other blood cancer nonprofits, LLS is the largest funder of cutting-edge research to advance cures.
Joshua Chamberlain Society (JCS): The Joshua Chamberlain Society’s mission consists of providing long term support for Fallen and Wounded Military Heroes.
Living Water International: Living Water International exists to demonstrate the love of God by helping communities acquire desperately needed clean water.
“Although we can’t stop going to classes to travel to Africa and help villagers or sit beside with a cancer patient we can do some things,” Russo said. “So what we do is take some time kind of remind guys that there are people out there in need of our help.”
There are many ways to get involved. Stugo will be hosting a shinny hockey tournament, 3v3 basketball tournament, several video game tournaments, and several other games. They will also be selling specialty lunches that include (Raising Cane’s, Papa Johns, and Chik-Fil-a).
“I’m excited for the big events,” Russo said. “I encourage students to come watch the shinny finals or the alumni basketball game. I’m just most excited to be able to walk into the gym and just see 300 people.”
Day 1: Bubble soccer and video games
Day 2: Shinny hockey, 3v3 basketball, and ping pong
The hard hits, aggressive plays, and scoring. The Shinny Hockey final was a showdown between two senior teams. The final included major hits as well as a few flying sticks. The championship belongs to the team of Noah Garrett, Anthony DeBellis, Max Van Sciever, Sebastian Metzner, and in goal, Simon Benben. Van Sciever started it off with a goal giving them an early lead. After halftime, Van Sciever added to the score give them a 2-0. DeBellis helped out by adding a few big hits against the contenders. However, it was no easy fight.
“I was a little bit surprised that we made it to the finals,” said DeBellis. “But once we got there I was really excited and I had a lot of fun.”
The 3v3 basketball championship was a game for the books. It was a match between an impressive group of seniors who do not play basketball, and a group of juniors that consisted of some varsity and JV players. It was a back and forth game, the score leader changing every minute. When it came down to the final seconds, the juniors were unable to stop seniors Dylan Radke, Luke Wetzel, Josh Lindell, and Joe Dickson. The four seniors were all putting on a show, the occasionally three from Dickson or the drive from Wetzel. The seniors pulled out with a 12-9 win, although it was no easy battle.
“I was pretty confident we were gonna win the championship from the beginning,” said Radke. “It was a good feeling to compete and win against some true basketball players.”
Senior Brent Roberson won the round robin ping pong tournament for this year’s Mission Week. As winner, he was awarded the chance to compete against David “Profe” Cabrera, who played at Lindenwood college.
“I’m just happy that they’re playing table tennis,” Cabrera said. “I love to see the competitiveness between kids and I also like how it caters to the injured kids who can’t play in other tournaments.”
Day 3: Alumni basketball game and the closing assembly
Alumni basketball game
To close off the week, STUGO held an all-school assembly to congratulate the students on raising money for the missions. During the assembly, the rock, paper, scissors championships were held. The finals consisted of sophomore Joseph Hartrich from Webster vs. senior Sean Gerty from Kirkwood. It was best of three and it went to three but in the end, Gerty pulls off the win with a solid throw of a rock.
End of Mission Week 2019
At the end of Mission Week, the school raised upwards of $8,000 for the missions. In addition, students from all grade levels came together to experience the fun activities, whether that was watching video games, playing shinny, playing ping pong, or even being a spectator.
“It was a success because we raised thousands of dollars for charities,” Director of Student Activites Russo said. “But I also think it was a success because when I walked down the stairs I saw all these spartans together having fun, the school came together.”
Russo said his best memory of this Mission week was at the very end. A student came up to him and wanted to just donate to the missions, without looking for fun things to do or tournaments to win, and handed Russo a $20 dollar bill.
“There’s an immediate success of seven hundred spartans coming together for a common cause and sharing experiences and just being with each other,” Russo said. “Because of this, I know they hear the call to be men for and with others.”