BAY ST. LOUIS Miss. (WLOX) - Mercy Day is one of the most anticipated events at Our Lady Academy.
“My favorite part of Mercy Day is probably this whole school coming together and like celebrating," said junior McKenzie Wallace.
The day starts with a service at Our Lady of the Gulf Catholic Church, followed by a high tea in honor of the school’s founders and the original Sisters of Mercy. Afterward, the school hosted an elaborate picnic under the oak trees.
“We come out here and have the picnic, which is so special to everybody because we’re just bonding together as a school," said Marylaine Demetz, a senior.
Every student wore a shirt representing the sisterhood they were placed in when they joined the school. The sisterhoods are based on core values set by the Sisters of Mercy.
“It’s nice to see those kids who started in seventh grade but they stay in the same sisterhood all the way through 12th grade, working and growing and loving their community," said Principal Marilyn Pigott.
Each sisterhood chooses a community service project to work on throughout the year.
“In Integrity and Compassion, our sisterhood is going around to various cemeteries in the community and we’re placing flowers on the graves of the deceased,” said senior Becca Walk.
Team Diversity is bringing handmade blankets to the Children’s Hospital in New Orleans.
“Every girl in the sisterhood makes at least one tie blanket, and so it kind of represents our sisterhood because it’s like the two fabrics coming together,” Demetz explained.
The students cap off their day with a round of competitive games.
“If you win you get bragging rights, and it’s really fun,” said freshman Caroline Maillho.
The students said despite the competitive energy, they’re excited to spread light into the community together.
“I think we have a special thing here on the Gulf Coast,” Pigott said.
Our Lady Academy’s Mercy Day Celebration has been observed for more than 40 years.