Through our Dignified Living pillar we have responded to the call of the Catholic Church to perform Corporal Works of Mercy for our brothers and sisters in Christ all over the world through: feeding the hungry, giving drink to the thirsty, clothing the naked, sheltering the homeless, and visiting the sick. Responding to Christ’s call in Matthew 25:34-40.
“Then the king will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father. Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.’ Then the righteous will answer him and say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? When did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? When did we see you ill or in prison, and visit you?’ And the king will say to them in reply, ‘Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me.’”
– Matthew 25:34-40
“To commit oneself to the development of the whole person and every human being is an obligation not only for the individual, but also for societies and nations, and especially for the Catholic community and the other Christian churches.”
– Saint John Paul II, Solicitude Rei Socialis
CATHOLIC WORLD MISSION in ACTION
Projects in Dignified Living
Food for the Hungry
Many of our brothers and sisters in Christ around the world suffer from severe malnutrition. Many only get to eat one very simple meal each day – if even that. We begin to answer this call of the Lord by providing assistance wherever it is needed. In Kenya, we helped with feeding families who were dying from lack of food because of a drought. In Congo, we are providing monthly support for food and medicines to orphaned children. In our own backyard we helped rebuild a food pantry so a poor parish in Yonkers, NY can continue to assist poor families. These are just some of the programs to help feed starving people around the world. From Operation Kilo in Poland, to Christmas meals to thousands of children in poor villages in India, Catholic World Mission is making a difference one person at a time.
Filling bellies is the first step to rehabilitation and breaking the cycle of poverty. Malnourished children do not learn, hungry parents cannot work, hunger eats away at a person’s ability to fulfill their God-given potential. With your help we can conquer poverty at its roots. It all starts with honoring each person the dignity they deserve as children of God. Each person deserves a dignified way of living and must have the basic necessities of food, water, clothing, and medical support.
We take a front seat in meeting the physical, material, and spiritual needs of people around the world. Building safe structures is part of our mission to provide sustainable environments for people to grow in. We have built medical clinics, water wells, dining halls, orphanages, community centers, and rebuilt schools. Safe structures are vital to the longevity of a community. Not only do they protect people from the elements but when you have a place to grow together safely it enriches the whole world.
We have built safe structures around the world in India, the United States, Ghana, Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Philippines and other parts of the world to keep people safe from rain, dust, traffic, and even provide medical care. In Ghana and Kenya, water wells provide safe and clean drinking water essential for good health. In India and Ghana, school children no longer need to eat outside (rain or shine). They have covered dining halls where they can eat regardless of weather. Simple things such as bathrooms for school children are now a reality in places like Mexico and India. A medical clinic in Yiwabra allows people to be cared for instead of traveling for miles to get to the nearest hospital. Community centers serves a variety of purpose for entire community to gather and work collectively towards improving their situation.You can make a difference in the world by exploring the many countries (below) in Dignified Living and being part of the opportunity to make a difference in however way you can.
In today’s world, it is hard to fathom that there are still countries in which tens of thousands of children die each year due to easily treatable and preventable diseases. In many third-world areas, people have virtually no access to medical care. For some, it would take hours- even days- to walk unpaved roads to find the nearest medical clinic. At Catholic World Mission, we see it as our God-given duty to alleviate the suffering due to illness that could have been so easily prevented.
Short-term medical clinics are imperative to the health of people in these areas. Catholic World Mission partners with donors and Helping Hands Medical Missions to support short-term missions around the world. Additionally, it has been our privilege to ship cargo containers of medicines and supplies to impoverished areas in Ghana, Nigeria, Guatemala, Honduras, and the Philippines to help supply short-terms missions and stock hospitals in the area. Antibiotics, surgical and testing equipment, hospital beds and more are in such desperate need. In partnership with the local people and another non-profit we built a clinic in Yiwabra, Ghana to assist with short and long-term medical needs of the people.
The math is simple: we have so much here, and they have so little. Sharing the wealth requires a concerted, coordinated effort to secure the gift-in-kind, and fund the overseas shipments. Our shipments have helped thousands of people receive medical care, and possibly avert life-threatening disease.
Doctors and medical professionals volunteering their time
Medical Mission volunteers collaborated with full-time lay missionaries, or Evangelizadores de Tiempo Completo (ETCs), on a trip this past July to offer aid to some of the poorest and most remote areas of Chiapas, Mexico. The effort was authorized by the Archbishop of Tuxtla Gutierrez and coordinated through the local parishes.
About 900 residents of Copainala, Coapilla and Ocotopec were treated by volunteer doctors, nurses and even an orthodontist. ETC and volunteer missionaries offered spiritual guidance and support for these people, many of whom are suffering due to poverty and lack of health care.
The residents were given checkups and physicals, as well as medicine and vitamins to help alleviate their most immediate and treatable ailments. Basic dental equipment was given to patients to take home. Some basic procedures were also performed.
Some of the sick who were too ill to travel received home visits
Many of the volunteers were inspired by the residents’ tremendous attitudes and resolve despite being plagued with various incurable diseases and handicaps. Along with the medical personnel, Fr. Dominic Pham, LC was also on site to offer spiritual guidance and prayer.
Much was done during just a week’s time, but it still is only a drop in the bucket. More importantly, however, is the light shed on the harsh realities that plague these areas. The knowledge of these conditions and the great need will hopefully generate more awareness and support for these people going forward. A commitment has already been made for another mission next year.