Diocese of Portland names contest winners
Bishop Robert Deeley announced the winners of the Diocese of Portland’s Christmas Card Art Contest.
All Catholic school and faith formation students throughout the diocese were invited to participate in the contest. The submissions featured original creations by the artists and reflecting a passage from Scripture, with one winner selected from each of the four age divisions.
The winners are: kindergarten-grade 2: Nataleigh Poirier of Saint Dominic Academy at Lewiston; grades 3-5: Valerie Saba of St. Brigid School at Portland; grades 6-8: Ella Brown of Holy Cross School at South Portland; and grades 9-12: Saima Gombar of Good Shepherd Parish at Lyman.
The winning artwork will appear on Christmas cards to be sent to 2022 Catholic Appeal donors.

Parishes assemble Christmas boxes for kids
Thanks to generous parishioners and community members from around York County, hundreds of children will receive presents at Christmas.
Parishioners in Wells, Kennebunk, Kittery, York, and South Berwick filled 325 boxes full of Christmas gifts for children who have never received one before. Thanks to Cross Catholic Outreach, all the boxes will be delivered to children in need living in Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Grenada, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Guatemala to spread joy and mercy at Christmas time.
“Participants bless children suffering from extreme poverty by sharing the joy of Christmas and planting seeds of hope,” said Lisa White, an organizer of the initiative at Holy Spirit Parish in Kennebunk and Wells. “Our parish, along with Veronica Richards and the Parish of the Ascension of the Lord in York, Kittery, and South Berwick, collected the boxes and prepared them for shipping. It was a huge success.”

MHC names Caregiver of the Year
Cheryl Dedian has been named Southern Maine Health Care’s 2022 Caregiver of the Year.
Dedian is a respiratory therapist at Biddeford Medical Center. For the past 2½ years she has thrown herself into delivering lifesaving care to COVID-19 patients, on top of caring for other patients needing critical respiratory care.
She was routinely assigned to the Special Care Unit where she often treated an excess of six ventilated patients. She became the expert on life-saving proning maneuvers and often took the lead to prone appropriate COVID-19 patients.
“Cheryl maintains a strong clinical presence and demonstrates an expertise in which other disciplines will seek her out for her assistance. She is recognized for going above and beyond in demonstrating care, compassion and professionalism. She believes in treating her patients the same way she would want her family or herself to be treated. She has a way of making people in her presence feel comfortable and safe. She is smart, competent, respectful, kind and positive,” said Margaret Weed, respiratory therapy manager.
The Caregiver of the Year award is chosen based upon patient comments and peer recommendations throughout the organization. The recipient must meet the following criteria: exemplify extraordinary commitment to patients on a daily basis; show compassion, empathy and respect in the delivery of care to patients and their families; acknowledge and meet the unique physical, emotional and practical needs of patients and their families and; promote an environment of cooperation and collaboration in which the expertise and experience of all healthcare professionals are available to patients.

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