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Teens fortify houses, faith lives at WorkCamp
'It's a feeling you don't get anywhere else,' one youth says
For the second time this summer, teens from the Arlington Diocese spent a week hard at work making dozens of Virginia homes warmer, safer and drier at diocesan WorkCamp, organized by the Office of Youth Ministry.
Drills and power saws in hands, the youths built wheelchair ramps, replaced windows and doors, re-tiled floors and built sets of stairs. And while they fortified the homes of needy residents, they also fortified their WorkCamp community and their faith lives.
"It’s nice because I get to experience helping out my community and helping out our neighbors and learning how to love them,” said 17-year-old Catherine Dowgiello, a parishioner of St. John the Apostle Church in Leesburg.
The evening programs, too, helped her grow in her faith, especially "coming together as a community and being able to love God together,” she said.
“We sing songs and we pray and everyone is so connected," she added. "It feels like we’ve known each other for a while.”
"I love looking around and seeing the community that’s built from teenagers and people my age and younger," said Lindsey Neimo, a parishioner of St. James Church in Falls Church who attended WorkCamp three times before returning as a volunteer. "It's incredible. It's a feeling you don’t get anywhere else."
Check the Aug. 9 print edition for the full story and more photos.