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St. Joseph Catholic Church Students Participate in Souper Bowl
Wednesday, February 9, 2011 • Posted February 9, 2011

Students from St. Joseph Catholic Church participated in the Souper Bowl of Caring for the seventh consecutive year. They collected money in a soup pot as parishioners left Mass the weekend of the Super Bowl. All money collected this year was given to the Mason County Ministerial Alliance Food Bank.

A simple prayer: "Lord, even as we enjoy the Super Bowl football game, help us be mindful of those who are without a bowl of soup to eat" is inspiring a youth-led movement to help hungry and hurting people around the world.

This prayer, delivered by Brad Smith, then a seminary intern serving at Spring Valley Presbyterian Church in Columbia, SC, gave birth to an idea. Why not use Super Bowl weekend, a time when people come together for football and fun, to also unify the nation for a higher good: collecting dollars and canned food for the needy? Youth could collect donations at their schools and churches in soup pots, and then send every dollar DIRECTLY to a local charity of THEIR choice.

The senior high youth of Spring Valley Presbyterian liked the idea so much they decided to invite other area churches to join the team. Twenty-two Columbia churches participated that first year, reporting their results so a total could be determined, and then sending all $5,700 they had raised to area non-profits.

That was 1990. Since then, ordinary young people have generated an extraordinary $70 million for soup kitchens, food banks and other charities in communities across the country. In addition, hundreds of thousands of youth have experienced for themselves the joy and satisfaction of giving and serving, inspiring people of all ages to follow their generous example.

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