If you ever want to see a community come together, give them a reason, and that is exactly what happened this past weekend at St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church in Smyrna, Georgia. While thousands of patients all over the world were praying for a compatible bone marrow donor, in one of Atlanta’s suburbs, hundreds of strangers were rushing to registration tables, to be the answer to those prayers.
After an intense weekend of long hours, the results were as expected of this Catholic Community. A total of 382 new bone marrow donors were added to the registry, representing 382 possible miracles for those patients that are waiting for a second chance of life.
The success of this bone marrow campaign was the result of several organizations coming together with one mission. Thanks to the approval given to the Icla da Silva Foundation by the Archdiocese of Atlanta, and the support of Father Jim Kuczynski and Father Jaime Molina from St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church, this campaign was made possible.
We also received the invaluable assistance of a wonderful group of volunteers that ranged from all races and ages. With the youngest one being an 8 year old Fanconi Anemia patient, who received his miracle thanks to an unknown hero. There were many other factors that contributed to the success of this campaign, God’s grace and the caring hearts of the parishioners from St Thomas the Apostle, who showed the real meaning of brotherly love.
There is a lot more that needs to be done, but we are moving in the right direction. As we continue to receive the support from the media, community and religious leaders, the Icla da Silva Foundation will continue bringing hope of life. With every effort we move one step closer to our goal of finding a matching donor to every patient regardless of race or ethnicity.