By DOROTHY GRILLO
In these troubling and trying times for our church and our nation, we at Catholic Charities maintain a clear vision. Our sense of security was shattered on Sept. 11, yet our nation responded with unprecedented caring and generosity. Today, our faith in the institutions of our church is being tested by the shame of scandal. Yet our belief in the presence of God in our midst and the mission of Jesus Christ remains unshaken, and our vision of a just and compassionate society unclouded.
We need your help.
Catholic Charities cannot stop — and will not stop — until poverty, hunger and homelessness are ended. Our support of the poor has remained constant through wars, recessions, and previous times of national and local upheaval. It will not waver now. It is with clear vision and determination that we stay true to Catholic Charities mission of providing help and creating hope. Together we can bring good news to the poor of the 21st century.
“Believing in the presence of God in our midst, we proclaim the sanctity of human life and the dignity of the person …”
Catholic social teaching, based on Holy Scripture and articulated in the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church, holds the human person as central — the clearest reflection of God among us. Catholic Charities works to protect and enhance human life.
By assisting women confronted by a crisis pregnancy with support, new baby kits, and counseling.
By assisting parishes in responding to the needy — the poor, the terminally ill, the bereaved.
By providing counseling and education services for Catholic schools on issues including child abuse and protection, and behavioral problems as requested.
By helping establish a new Birthright center.
By convening Respect Life committees across the diocese to work on life issues including abortion, the death penalty, stem cell research, and euthanasia.
By remembering the environment in our mandate to “care for God’s creation,” and working with S.C. Christian Action Council on an interfaith environmental issues committee.
” … by sharing in the mission of Jesus given to the church.”
Catholic Charities has served as the social outreach ministry of the Diocese of Charleston since 1945. Working in partnership with other people of good will, we provide an opportunity for those who share our values to continue the mission of Jesus: to feed the hungry, to give drink to the thirsty, to clothe the naked, to shelter the homeless, and to visit those in prison.
By providing services to more than 24,000 men, women and children.
By creating an Office of Immigration Services.
By supporting the Catholic Outreach Centers in the diocese with donations of food, children’s clothing, toys, school supplies, and other special needs.
By helping a group of parishes establish a new St. Vincent de Paul Society.
By coordinating annual Migrant Toiletry Drives.
By supporting Kairos and other prison ministry activities with Bibles, attendance at conferences and information sharing.
By operating clothing centers, food pantries, a soup kitchen, and a residential care home.
By providing all our Catholic schools with Master of Disaster Kits to help educate our children about disaster preparedness and response.
“To this end, Catholic Charities works with individuals, families, and communities …”
Our mission is best accomplished by working with individuals and families in concert with the larger church and civic community.
By being an integral part of SCAN (S.C. Anti-hunger Network), a statewide initiative to address the issues of hunger and malnutrition in South Carolina.
By operating and supporting after-school programs.
By helping to establish a forum for faith communities to advocate for justice, promote charitable outreach, and interfaith understanding — Greenville Faith Communities United.
By heeding our call to “faithful citizenship” and establishing a Legislative Information Network (LIN) to raise awareness of current issues. LIN is not a lobbying organization.
By working with neighborhood associations, city and county governments on community development, employment, landlord/tenant relations, and affordable housing.
By working on a just and equitable reauthorization of TANF (Temporary Assistance to Needy Families).
By working with Catholic Charities USA, S.C. Department of Social Services, rural school districts, and literally hundreds of other churches, local, state and national Catholic and non-Catholic agencies and organizations.
By working with and training hundreds of volunteers who selflessly give of their time and talents.
By establishing and maintaining a strong Catholic presence in our communities.
Now we invite YOU to search your heart, and meaningfully share in the vision of being Christ to the “least of our brothers and sisters.” Please give generously.
Dorothy Grillo is director of Catholic Charities for the Diocese of Charleston.