Katherine Hallinan is breathing rarefied Girl Scout air.
A 2017 graduate of Marple Newtown High School, Hallinan recently earned the Gold Award, the highest achievement in Girl Scouts. She received a plaque from the Marple commissioners to recognize her achievement.
The Gold Award is a seven-step process in which the scout identifies and investigates an issue, creates a plan, builds a team and executes the project. The plan serves to solve a community issue in both the short and long term. The most prestigious honor and most difficult to earn, only 5.4 percent of Girl Scouts are eligible to complete their project and receive an award.
Hallinan produced a copy of Our Lady of Good Counsel, a fresco of Mary and the baby Jesus in a church in Genazzano, Italy. She presented the work to Blessed Virgin Mary Church in Darby as part of its 100th anniversary celebration.
“There is a miraculous story behind the painting,” she said. “In the 1500s, a cloud containing it descended upon the church, the bells rang out and the painting was placed on a ledge.”
Much of the project was completed this summer at Drexel Swim Club, where Hallinan held classes on the basics of painting. She produced two YouTube videos with similar instructions and many of the young members assisted in completing the background.
Hallinan, a freshman at Delaware County Community College, has been in scouting for 10 years as a member of Troop 5042 at St. Matthew Lutheran Church in Springfield. Her Gold Award ceremony was held this week at Camp Laughing Waters.