My visit back at St. Patricks was better than we could have hoped for. We were brought to the library, where loand behold, the books were displayed prominently and proudly. It was immediately apparent that they have been well taken care of. Although outside of specific supervised hours the books are locked up, it is also understandable. They are really valued, and have singlehandedly upgraded the library.
When I sat down with the students (without any staff), I discovered that seventy percent of them had read one book in the two weeks since they had been donated. Fifteen percent had read two, and one boy had read three. It was amazing to see firsthand that something so easy to give can make such a difference to people.
When the library was opened briefly for us to view and take measurements, it was really touching to see the boys (there to help) immediately gravitate towards that modest bookshelf and, trying to draw as little attention to themselves as possible, start reading. They had completely withdrawn from what was going on around them. But that is, after all, the ultimate purpose of a book. To remove you from where you are, draw you in, and allow you to jump worlds.