There’s nothing better than “opening up a new book for the first time.” That’s what my six-year-old grandson tells me. And it looks like the parishioners at St. Leo agree with him as they page through books in the parish’s new lending library in the back of the church.
The majority of the books have been donated through the generosity of Sister Ann of St. Boniface School who encourages students to keep up their reading skills all year round. For adults learning English having simple books to read reinforces the skills they are learning in ESL classes.
While going to the library is relatively simple for people who have a car, getting to the public library is at least one bus ride away for many of our parishioners so many people don’t have easy access to books.
Many of our children don’t have the experience of having a book read to them be-fore bedtime that most of us remember from our childhoods. Few of our families have ever owned books and so the parish library is a real blessing for them. Both children and adults buzz around the bookshelves before and after Mass and are pleased to take books home and savor them, returning them when finished to share with others.
The new library offers something for everyone from preschoolers to senior citizens. Want to learn about geography or find out what Elmo is up to? Hope to learn more about science or how to pray? Just need a good novel to curl up with on a hot summer afternoon? You’re likely to find something to meet your needs in the library.
In addition to encouraging the joy of reading, our parish library is another way we collaborate with our partners in living out the spiritual and corporal works of mercy.