What is “Penny Wars”?

The most wonderful time of the year – Catholic Schools Week– has come and gone, and nothing goes better with free dress days than a little friendly competition between classes for a good cause. Penny Wars is an event Xavier has participated in for over twenty years and its popularity never ceases. However, many students threw pennies into jars without understanding the process or reason for the game. But don’t fret! I’m here to clarify some long-held confusions.

First, the game of Penny Wars is actually quite simple. Each class has two buckets: one for pennies and one for silver coins. The objective is to collect as many pennies for your class as possible and throw all your silver coins into the buckets of the other classes. Every penny collected in your class bucket raises the total score, but every silver coin drops the score. For example, if the senior class collects 200 pennies, but a sophomore throws in a quarter, the total senior score is now $1.75.

First, all the money collected during the week is donated to the Diocese of Phoenix’s, Charity and Development Appeal which “provides a unique opportunity to partner with and support the work of more than 70 organizations, programs and ministries of [the Phoenix] Diocese” (Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix). The CDA helps people in the Diocese answer the call of discipleship through small donations that make a big difference. The bucket loads of coins that Xavier collects aids the Diocese in feeding the hungry, welcoming strangers, comforting the sick, and counseling the doubtful (Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix).

Not only is Penny Wars a fun and easy way to give back to the community, but also according to Executive Board Treasurer Brittney Robinson, “The competitiveness makes the entire event even more awesome. My favorite part of Catholic School’s Week is Friday at break when it’s absolute anarchy as girls dump silver coins in other class’s buckets and pull out $20 bills if they really want to settle a feud.”

In the end, the sophomores came out victorious with a score of -$133.12, winning themselves a voucher to the snack bar. The seniors trailed far behind with a score of -$379.13. Xavier ended up collecting a grand total of $1,495.46 for the Charity and Development Appeal. Now that you know how the game works and why we play, make sure to bring your A-game to Penny Wars 2018.