REGINA — It couldn’t have been a better day, with sunshine and little wind; the temperature remained around 20C with just a little smoke in the air from the Fort McMurray fires, but not enough to create a health hazard.
It was the seventh annual Moving in Faith Day for the Regina Catholic School Division, and this year almost 1,200 students, staff, families and friends showed up at the Canada Summer Games Park to celebrate their faith, be physically active and just have fun.
“It’s a testament to the work of the committee and the way it’s being advertised by word-of-mouth. Year after year people are understanding that it’s a great event for families and staff and faith building within their communities, so it’s great to see our numbers increase,” said committee chair Graham Hayes, physical education and health consultant for the school division.
Each year, a particular charity is chosen for support and this year the Marian Centre, a downtown soup kitchen, was selected. The centre, part of the Madonna House Apostolate of Combermere, Ont., is celebrating its 50th year in Regina. Three Marian Centre staff, set up with a table near the park entrance, were accepting donations and collected $1,563, which will go toward food purchases.
Activities included two- and five-mile km/runs starting and ending on the games park track after following routes within the Games Park and surrounding Wascana Park. Covered, air-filled trampolines and an air-filled slide entertained the younger children while Pat Roth, Riffel High School’s chaplain, showed off his skills as a balloon figure sculptor while students painted young children’s faces in an adjacent tent.
Two bands — Elevation Axis, comprised of students and staff from O’Neil High School, and Visions, an adult band — entertained the crowd prior to the liturgy that opened the afternoon’s scheduled events. As usual, Rev. John Weckend led the brief service.
Deputy school board chair Donna Ziegler brought greetings on behalf of the Board of Trustees and made particular mention that it was the last such event director of education Rob Currie would be attending as director. He becomes assistant deputy minister of education August 1.
Twenty-eight sponsors provided a total of $12,500 in cash or in-kind donations which provided for numerous draw prizes and helped pay for the event.
It culminated a weeklong Faith Days celebrated in the division’s high schools. Each school constructed its own week with liturgies, faith walks around the school’s neighbourhood and workshop sessions on various topics, some with outside presenters.
Moving in Faith began in 2009 as Walk in Faith with about 40 students, staff and friends engaging in a five-kilometre walk around Wascana Lake. It moved to the Canada Summer Games Park in 2010.