The Archdiocese of Baltimore is sponsoring a bone marrow drive Saturday, January 26, 10 am to 2 pm, at St. Mary’s Seminary in Roland Park. The drive was inspired by Msgr. Arthur Valenzano, Rector of the Basilica of the Assumption in Baltimore, who was diagnosed with leukemia in 2006. Msgr. Valenzano has already undergone one bone marrow transplant thanks to a family member who was a partial match. His doctors tell him he needs a second transplant to combat the disease.
While he understands the likelihood of finding a perfect match is slim, the Baltimore priest hopes the drive will help find a match for others suffering with the disease or some other form of cancer.
“The drive isn’t about me,” Msgr. Valenzano said in a recent interview with The Catholic Review. “It’s about raising a level of consciousness that you can help a person get well by donating bone marrow.”
Saturday’s bone marrow drive is open to any healthy individual between the ages of 18 and 44 and involves a simple cheek swab. The Archdiocese is working with Johns Hopkins Hospital and the “Be the Match” national bone marrow registry.