Confirmation project helps persecuted Christians

DANBURY—The Level 1 Confirmation students at St. Joseph Parish in Danbury choose a different charity to support each year. In November, following the National Day of Prayer for Persecuted Christians, the students chose the Knights of Columbus Christian Refugee Relief Fund. Christians in the Middle East face daily persecution and receive little support.

According to Carl Anderson, Supreme Knight of the Knights of Columbus, “the situation is dire. For instance, Christianity in Iraq—which can be traced to the time of the Apostles—could disappear entirely. That community has fallen from 1.5 million in 2003 to less than 200,000 today. Seeing that their brothers and sisters in Christ around the world care about them will provide much needed hope to those who have lost everything but their faith, for their faith.”

Purchasing and donating supplies, the students then gathered together to dip, decorate, and bag pretzels. Making 1,200 pretzel rods was fun. Selling them in the chill weather was more challenging, though cheerful hearts kept them warm. They finished selling the pretzel bags before Christmas. In all, the Confirmation Community Service Pretzel Project collected $650 to send to the Fund.

“The persecuted Christians need our financial support and prayers,” said Lynn Smierciak, director of religious education at St. Joseph.

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