JOHN PAUL I STUDENTS LEAVE THEIR MARK DURING NATIONAL CHILDREN’S DAY
MONTREAL, MAY 31, 2011 – National Children’s Day was marked on May 25th, a day to remember all missing children. Since March 2011 John Paul I Junior High School students in St. Léonard,, their Spiritual Community Advisor Rocco Speranza, and staff from the Missing Children’s Network have worked on a very special project entitled Voices of the Missing to honour and provide a voice for six missing children. This included Jolene Riendeau, whose body was recently found more than a decade after her disappearance.
In April, 16 John Paul I students, met with the parents of several of these missing children, interviewed them and spent an afternoon chatting. Based on these meetings and the friendships that formed, the students have been working with great dedication, devotion and conviction to honour them with song, poetry and art. Throughout the evening of May 25th 2011, at the Hilton Montreal Bonaventure Hotel, the Missing Children’s Network marked this important day by hosting a very special evening of hope, remembrance, and faith. The program allowed for the remarkable and dedicated group of students from John Paul I to lend a voice to the missing through their emotional and moving tributes. They truly shone a light on the lives of the missing children, demonstrating that they may be missing but they are not forgotten.
The guests and family members were deeply touched by the tributes. This included Amanda Amari’s performance of “Hallelujah”, “Imagine” and “I Miss You” and Emily Latin singing “When you are Gone”. The instrumentals on guitar were provided by Melissa Masone who helped set the atmosphere. A colourful tissue paper mosaic of an angel with a young child which was created by art teacher Saverio Biunno and group 207 provided the backdrop for the ceremony.
“It was a very moving ceremony,” said Rocco Speranza, Spiritual Animator at John Paul I. “We are really proud and touched by the hard work the students put into this worthy project. Children are very precious resources. It was truly fitting to have our students remember, honour and give those who are missing a voice.”
Rocco Speranza extended a great big thank you to Amanda Amari and Melissa Raimondo, who honoured Yohanna Cyr; Carina Paccione, Sabrina Mazza, Melissa Masone, and Christina Pascale, who honoured David Fortin; Ramona Potesta, Jenna Pizzi, Melanie Iacono, and Chiara Novielu who honoured Melanie Lynn Temperton; Ivano-Petriello, Elena Biello, and Gabrielle Maltesta, who honoured Karar Al Meliky; Victoria Di Paolo, Valerie Franchini, and Gabriella Lopeez , who honoured Jolene Riendeau and to Jameela Dufaan and Emily Latin, who honoured Melina Martin.