A local Catholic school alumnus is helping others receive the education that primed him for success.

Earlier this week, financial planner and business owner William Mullin donated $50,000 to St. Laurence Parish School in Upper Darby, from which he graduated in 1982.

The funds, which will provide tuition assistance, are part of a larger investment Mullin and his wife Colleen — a graduate of Holy Cross High School in Delran, New Jersey – are making in Catholic education.

In addition to St. Laurence, the couple recently donated $100,000 to nearby Msgr. Bonner and Archbishop Prendergast Catholic High School, along with an unspecified amount to Cristo Rey Philadelphia High School.

The Mullins presented the check to St. Laurence during a Sept. 14 ceremony hosted by the school, at which principal and Immaculate Heart of Mary Sister Regina Matulka thanked the couple for supporting education that offered “formation in the faith.”

In response, St. Laurence students gave the Mullins several gift baskets, along with a hand-made card signed by every child.

Father Thomas Whittingham, pastor of St. Laurence, opened the brief service with a prayer in which he offered thanks for the Mullins’ generosity and that of all the school’s donors, “who enable us to educate and spread the Gospel so that our students may come to know the truth, especially the truth about the God who sent his Son to save them.”

Students of St. Laurence Parish School attended a Sept. 14 ceremony at which alumnus William Mullin and his wife Colleen presented a $50,000 check to the school. (Gina Christian)

In a brief address to the students, William Mullin cited the school’s social, educational and catechetical strengths as the key reasons the couple chose to donate to St. Laurence.

“I met my two best friends at St. Laurence,” he said. “Hopefully when you leave, you too will have a best friend (graduating) with you.”

The school is also “awesome at math,” Mullin said, adding that “math is really, really important whether it’s business, life or planning for the future.”

“The skills I learned in math helped me later in life to do what I do,” he said. “When you’re doing your homework, realize that it can make a difference in your life, because it made a difference in mine.”

Above all, the school’s lessons in the faith will assure students “God is always there, in the good times and in the bad times.”

He noted that the couple “continue to try to become closer to God and include him in all of (their) decisions.”

Mullin urged his young listeners to seek God’s guidance, especially in moments of uncertainty.

“Whenever you’re unsure of a decision, it’s a great time to kneel, sit on your bed and pray and ask God what you should do,” he said. “He is someone who loves you and who will provide you answers in your journey through life.”

Speaking after the check presentation, Mullin admitted he and his wife had initially wanted to keep their recent donations private, but instead decided to set forth a challenge for others to follow suit.

“We originally were going to do this anonymously,” he said. “But we’re hoping it spurs other people to do so. It’s a 100% investment.”

William Mullin (right) and his wife Colleen display a $50,000 check they presented to St. Laurence Parish School in Upper Darby at a Sept. 14 ceremony attended by St. Laurence pastor Father Thomas Whittingham and Immaculate Heart of Mary Sister Regina Matulka, the school’s principal. (Gina Christian)