Detroit Stories Episode 22: 'Mercy in Action at St. Lucy' (PODCAST)

How a Christian service coordinator’s tragic passing brought a family of parishes together for ‘mercy in action’

(00:03) The narrator introduces Mercy in Action Day, where parishes in the six counties of the Archdiocese of Detroit mobilize to perform acts of service.

(01:13) Listeners are introduced to St. Lucy Parish’s particularly robust Christian service ministry. This is due in large part to Donna Belli, the Christian service coordinator at St. Lucy’s, who served the parish for 12 years.

(02:02) Fr. Jim Commyn, pastor of St. Lucy, explains how Donna was the kind of person who needed to be involved, needed to serve.

(03:36) The narrator describes how Donna loved Mercy in Action Day, a celebration and culmination of all the things the parish did in Christian service year-round.

(04:30) Christian service members and Fr. Commyn describe the extent of what Donna had planned for Mercy in Action Day.

(05:27) A description of the expansive service project Donna Belli had planned for St. Lucy’s on Mercy in Action Day — how Donna had planned for everything, including getting more volunteers, what to do if it started raining, or if the parking lot would have to be used for a funeral. Tragically, the funeral would end up being Donna’s own.

(07:37) A St. Lucy’s Christian service member describes how Donna always went above and beyond, never saying “no.”

(09:33) Donna’s family asked to have the funeral on Mercy in Action Day, but with everyone in the parish wanting to go to the funeral, Fr. Commyn called out to the community to make sure both could happen on the same day.

(10:51) St. Isaac Jogues and Our Lady Star of the Sea parishioners come together to help for Mercy in Action Day at St. Lucy during Donna’s funeral.

(14:32) Fr. Commyn talks about how “mercy in action” described Donna’s approach to life.

(15:58) Parishioners talk about what can happen when parishes work together for a common good.

(17:12) Fr. Commyn speaks to how the wider community effort is an example of what “Families of Parishes” can offer.

(17:59) In a video message from earlier this year, Donna gives a reflection on the week’s reading from a March 2021 Mass, reflecting on God has put her on earth to help others.

Reporting by Dan Meloy; narration by Andrew Kleczek; production by Ron Pangborn

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