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The annual Evening of Gratitude and Della Strada Award for the San Diego Ignatian Volunteer Corps was held on Saturday, April 29, 2017. The event began with a lovely celebration of the Eucharist in the Founders Chapel on the campus of the University of San Diego. Rev. Gil Gentile, SJ was the celebrant and homilist. The talented Choral Scholars from the University led the singing and Annette Welsh, University Minister & Director of the Founders Chapel Choir and Dr. Paul Infantino accompanied them. Following the Eucharistic celebration, the Evening of Gratitude attendees gathered in the Joan Kroc Institute of Peace and Justice Center for wine and hors d’oeuvres and the program. Margot Howard, Regional Director of IVC San Diego welcomed the guests. The newly inaugurated Sheila O’Malley Vision and Dedication Award was presented to Kathleen Murphy Spreen Christenson, Founder of IVC San Diego by Barbara J. Menard, IVC Regional Council Chair and Dr. Timothy O’Malley. This was followed by the presentation of the Della Strada Award to Nativity Prep Academy. After a short video about the school, the award was accepted by Brendan Sullivan, President of Nativity Prep Academy from Julie Bishop and Loretta Calfee, IVC Volunteers at NPA. One of the students played the keyboard and shared his musical talent with all the guests. Mike McColloch, Chairman of the National Board of Directors for IVC USA shared information about the Ignatian Volunteer Corps and the new initiatives that are beginning across the United States. Pablo Maldonado, Regional Advisory Council member led a spirited session to Fund the Work of IVC San Diego. No matter how large or small the gift, each donor received a balloon from one of the Nativity Prep Academy Students in attendance. The celebratory atmosphere was enjoyed by all.