Georgia Bulletin

The Newspaper of the Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta


By ANDREW NELSON, Staff Writer | Published February 4, 2010

Brandon and Cody Huggins had a vision to improve the campus of their former school and parish with outdoor seating. Now, the vision is a reality.

The 15-year-old twins recently achieved the rank of Eagle Scout as Boy Scouts with the completion of their community projects.

The Huggins attended St. Joseph School in Marietta for 10 years. They still attend St. Joseph Church.

Both teens identified projects that the students at school and the families at church could enjoy.

Cody always wanted to spend more time outside for lessons. He remembered “sitting on the curb” for outside instruction.

He figured if there was a place for the students to sit, the teachers would be more likely to take students outdoors. Undaunted by a hill with a 30-degree slope, he built an outdoor classroom. After overcoming challenges, the young people enjoy the seating for classes and at recess.

Brandon enjoyed participating in drama and other activities in Marist Hall on the Marietta campus. And while outside of the hall there is a great community area, it lacks seating.

Not to be outdone, he built outdoor seating for receptions, plays, retreats and dinners so that the outdoor space could be utilized.

The duo started their scouting career as Tigers in Troop 187 and continued as Boy Scouts in Troop 741. Brandon and Cody earned 39 and 40 badges, respectively, and logged more than 60 hours to complete each project.

The Queen of Angels School’s future city, Bene-Sciath, earned the team of students from the Roswell school top honors at the Georgia Regional National Engineers Week Future City competition.

They will now travel to Washington, D.C. to compete in the 18th annual Future City national finals scheduled for Feb. 13-17 at the Hyatt Regency Capitol Hill.

There was also a strong showing by Our Lady of Assumption School, Atlanta, which earned fourth place.

The winning students from Queen of Angels School were Laura Aileen O’Brien, Kristen Elizabeth Coppiano and Haley Wing-hei Tam. They were led by teacher Peggy DeGance and their volunteer engineer mentor Brian James Smith. The competition took place at Southern Polytechnic State University on Saturday, Jan. 23.

As envisioned by the students, Bene-Sciath is a tropical city located of the coast of Florida in the year of 2173. It blends innovative green technology in a contemporary designed tropical city. It is home to 85,273 residents. The city is built at 15 feet above sea level, which protects it from high tides and security to its citizens.

Other notable awards in the competition went to Catholic schools in the archdiocese: Best Futuristic City, Queen of Angels School; Excellence in System Integration, St. Jude the Apostle School, Atlanta; and Best Power Generation System, Our Lady of the Assumption School.

Father Edward Branch for many, many years has been working in the Atlanta Archdiocese as the chaplain of the Lyke House, the Catholic presence at Atlanta University Center.

And during that time Father Branch was actually a priest on loan to the archdiocese from his home, the Diocese of Louisville, Ky. Between his assignments at Grambling State University, La., at Catholic University of American, Washington, D.C., and here in Atlanta, it has been more than 30 years since he last served in his diocese.

At the annual Martin Luther King celebration Mass in January, during which Father Branch served as the homilist, Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory announced that Father Branch would soon become a priest of the Atlanta Archdiocese.

Close to 17,000 pounds of electronics were recycled during the Marist School’s Terra Project initiative.

On Jan. 16, Marist School partnered with ecycle to host an electronic recycling event on campus that was open to the public. Throughout the day, 215 cars brought in 16,800 pounds of unwanted electronic equipment that was disposed of in an environmentally responsible way.

For more information about other Terra Project initiatives, visit