DENNIS TOWSHIP – A second grader’s impulse to help other young people has grown into a talent show at Bishop McHugh Regional Catholic School.

Bishop’s Got Talent is set to begin 6 p.m. Friday, Nov. 9, at the school, 2221 Route 9 North. Tickets are $5 for kids under 12, $8 for others, with the money to help buy equipment and supplies for the pediatrics department at Cape Regional Health System.

Greta Rebecca Kleinman, 7, went to her mom one day to talk about her idea.

“Out of nowhere, she said ‘I’d like to help the kids at the hospital.’ We’re not sure what prompted that,” her father, Jonathan Kleinman, said recently. There had been no recent visits to the hospital, no family discussions.

“We’re people of faith. I don’t want to over-spiritualize this, but we’re Christians. She takes that to heart.”

He believes it was divine inspiration. So does Greta.

“Jesus came to my heart and said I have to do a talent show help the sick kids,” she said this week.

Greta wanted to do something for kids at Cape Regional Medical Center in Cape May Court House. Her father said Greta and her mother, GretaJo Payne, talked about options. There were a few possibilities, Kleinman said, but they kept coming back to the idea of a talent show. It seemed like a good fit for Greta.

“She’s definitely got a desire to perform,” he said. She takes dance and other lessons. “That’s kind of her main thing. She’s always gravitated toward performance.”

Kleinman said he and his wife took Greta’s idea seriously and tried to find ways to make it work. They approached the parent-teacher organization at the pre-kindergarten-through-eighth-grade Catholic school, known as PATH or Parents, Administrators and Teachers working in Harmony.

“We decided we did not want to let this go by the wayside,” Kleinman said. The next step was to go to the school administration, where he said the idea received a warm welcome. The school reached out to Cape Regional, where staff members also liked the idea.

“They were fully on board,” Kleinman said.

The student CARES ambassadors, a group of Bishop McHugh students in fifth through eighth grade, organized the event, along with Greta and adult volunteers. In addition to ticket sales, there will also be a silent auction and food for sale at the event. Children under 3 are free.

Bishop McHugh has held plenty of fundraisers, but Kleinman believes this is the first time it has raised money for children at the area hospital.

Kleinman said he wants to keep the focus on the children that will be helped, not on his daughter, he said, adding that humility is also an important lesson.

“Try to keep the focus on the hospital,” he said.

For more information, contact the school at felicia@bishopmchugh.com.

Started working with the Press in the Circulation Department in 2006 and moved to Editorial in 2008. Previously worked in Circulation and Advertising at the Asbury Park Press.

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