St. John Vianney Youth Ministry transforms a house into a home


By Barb Arland-Fye

Allie Weis, front, and Morgan Dobroski, members of the Youth Ministry group at St. John Vianney Parish in Bettendorf, scrub the baseboard in one of the five bedrooms of a Davenport house that will become home to five women with mental illness on May 1. Youth Ministry group members cleaned and decorated the house to transform it into a home. They learned that two of the women moving in are housekeepers at their parish.

DAVENPORT — The pungent smell of Murphy Oil Soap permeated an upstairs bedroom where high school students Morgan Dobroski and Allie Weis washed baseboards and Cristina Olson vacuumed a dusty staircase leading to the attic.
Downstairs, several of their cohorts in Youth Ministry group at St. John Vianney Parish in Bettendorf fixed a vacuum cleaner, lifted furniture and performed other tasks Youth Minister Jan Stevenson requested of them.
All together, nearly 30 members of the Youth Ministry group labored this month in the older, five-bedroom house in Davenport that they helped transform into a cozy home for five women living with mental illness. Toward the end of the teens’ efforts, they were delighted to learn that two of the women moving into the house May 1 work at the parish in housekeeping.
“It’s validation that what we’re doing is exactly what we’re supposed to be doing,” Jan said as she directed the busy teens in their cleaning and decorating efforts.

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