Catholic Work in the United States
Catholic Work in the United States
In the United States there is a great struggle with both physical poverty and spiritual poverty. About 46 million Americans live in physical poverty, and many more live in spiritual poverty. In both cases we need to alleviate their suffering and help them meet Christ.
“The future starts today, not tomorrow.” ― Pope John Paul II
Feeding the Hungry
Feeding the Hungry
50.1 Million Americans Struggle to Put Food on the Table
50.1 million Americans struggle to put food on the table. In the US, hunger isn’t caused by a lack of food, but rather the continued prevalence of poverty. In the United States, we struggle to realize the amount of hunger that is all around us. In every twenty people, there is a family of three that cannot put food on the table and goes hungry every day. We know proper nutrition is vital to a child’s growth. That is why Catholic World Mission has partnered with St. Peters Food Pantry in Yonkers, New York. Together with our donors, we have reconstructed the pantry to keep out the cold and provide food throughout the year.
Fr. José Félix, LC runs St. Peter’s Catholic Parish located in a very low income area bordering the Bronx in Yonkers, NY. As part of their way to help the community they operate a food pantry which distributes bags of food to 300 needy families every week.
The Food pantry serves over 300 families regularly and over 1000 families over the holidays when children are home and not getting their meals at school. Ending food poverty in the United States is critical for the future of our children.
Christmas Blessings from South Carolina!
This Christmas, YOU helped St. Anthony’s Mission Catholic Church and St. Andrew’s Kitchen in Hardeeville, South Carolina provide Christmas meals and care packages! The volunteers delivered these meals and packages to 200 homeless in the area. Elizabeth Redway, a coordinator for the project, only had high praise and left the service opportunity with a grateful heart.
“We met some beautiful souls, knocked on many doors, and gave out hugs to those who needed them. The smiles on the faces of those in need when we handed them a hot meal and a bag filled with essentials warmed my heart and made me realize that we are blessed to be a blessing to others.”
This included a family Elizabeth and other volunteers ran into which showed them the true reason for the season:
“We met a family that did not want to take the meals at first because they said there were others that were in a worse situation than they were…Once we assured them that we had plenty to go around, they cried and said that we were truly a blessing. They could not stop hugging us. The dad was especially appreciative of the meal. He said that they did not always live on the street but that they had fallen on hard times and that this meal meant more to them than we would ever realize.”
The team is already eager to help again for the next Christmas season as they saw how many lives were touched firsthand by their servant’s hearts. We thank YOU and your generosity in feeding and providing for Hardeeville, South Carolina!
The Entire City of Hardeeville Benefit from this Local Food Pantry
Thanks to a very generous supporter, this past Christmas – 2019 – we partnered with St. Anthony Mission in South Carolina with the feeding of over 100 people at their Christmas Eve Dinner Event.
St. Anthony Mission in Hardeeville, SC, is a mission parish of St. Gregory the Great Catholic Church in Bluffton, SC. St. Anthony Mission is a small diversified parish supporting a food pantry, The Mercy Mission.
The local parish and school, John Paul II Catholic School, hosted a Christmas Eve dinner event for local homeless in their area. The parish provided a hot meal for over 100 people along with gift bags stuffed by the local students from John Paul II Catholic School with personal hygiene items and a gift card to Wendy’s for another hot meal over the holidays.
The entire city of Hardeeville benefit from this local food pantry, which through its services create community and assist those in dire need of help.
Building a Better Pantry
St. Peter’s food pantry has operated the last few years out of an old garage. The roof was caving in, and holes in the siding let in more than the weather. St. Peter’s came to us to ask for help rebuilding their food pantry to serve the immediate needs of their community. We were able to help transform St. Peter’s food pantry from a dilapidated garage, to an insulated and safe structure to work and store food in.
Fulfill the Spiritual and Corporal Works
Fulfill the Spiritual and Corporal Works
The Diocese of Gallup in the Pandemic
The Diocese of Gallup, New Mexico, is harshly affected by the pandemic. As the poorest diocese in the United States, it serves seven Native American Nations including the Diné (Navajo), Hopi, Zuni, White Mountain Apache, Jicarilla Apache, Laguna, and Acoma nations. It spans over two state boundaries to completely encompass the boundaries of these distinct Native American Reservations and Sovereign Nations.
Resources like running water and electricity are scarce on the Reservations, creating a perfect storm for COVID-19 to run rampant. Without electricity or running water, how are people supposed to wash their hands–one of the simplest defenses against the virus?
You can help today.
“We are, and have always been, ‘a poor Church serving the poor’, as Pope Francis desires.” – The Diocese of Gallup
Unlike the majority of Catholic World Mission’s past projects, The Diocese of Gallup has a combination of 20 parishes/schools, each with their own unique needs due to COVID-19. Because they are a mission-based diocese, they are heavily reliant on the generosity of others to sustain the ministry.
The Spiritual Works
- To Admonish the Sinner – Some parish confessionals need to be rebuilt to comply with the social distancing regulations. This will provide a safe space for reconciliation.
- To Instruct the Ignorant – Some parish catechism and RCIA programs, as well as schools, will need to reformat classrooms for social distancing and are in dire need of extra cleaning supplies.
- To Counsel the Doubtful and to Comfort the Sorrowful – In order to continue safe pastoral outreach and visitation, pastors, religious sisters, and lay ministers are in need of protective personal equipment.
- To Bear Wrongs Patiently and to Forgive All Injuries – Postage funds are needed for parishes to mail uplifting prayers to those who are at risk or suffering, without access to online masses and homilies.
- To Pray for the Living and the Dead – Additional bulletin funds are needed to announce mass intentions and parish news, as many bulletin advertisers are no longer sustaining ads in parish bulletins. Bulletins will be mailed to parishioners without the internet in remote regions.
The Corporal Works
- To Feed the Hungry – Some parishes host food banks. Due to a greater need for food because of pandemic-related job losses, parishes will be distributing supermarket gift cards to those in need.
- To Give Drink to the Thirsty – Because many of the Native Americans don’t have running water at home, the parishes allow parishioners to use the church’s water supplies. To provide safe and reliable water, many hoses and equipment must be replaced.
- To Clothe the Naked – Some parishes provide thrift shops, which will be hosted more frequently due to the increased need. More personal protective equipment and cleaning supplies are needed, as well.
- To Visit the Imprisoned – Pastors, religious sisters, and lay ministers are in need of protective personal equipment to continue safe pastoral outreach and visitation.
- To Shelter the Homeless – Some parishes use “rectory annexes” to house the homeless overnight. To provide a safe space, parishes are increasing their regular cleaning schedules and are in need of additional supplies.
- To Visit the Sick – In order to continue safe pastoral outreach and visitation, pastors, religious sisters, and lay ministers are in need of protective personal equipment.
- To Bury the Dead – Additional personal protective equipment is needed for pastoral visitations and funerals.
Getting Help to Those Who Need it Most
You helped 11 churches and 9 schools hit hard by the pandemic, who struggle during normal times. These churches and schools decided how best to serve their community getting help to those who need it most. Like St. Paul’s Catholic Church, a small predominately Navajo parish in Crown Point, New Mexico. Without running water or electricity this rural parish depends on wood as a fuel source. The elderly use wood for cooking their meals and to provide warmth. Your donation helped supply wood and impacted the community in two ways; the person providing the wood earned money for their work and the recipients benefited. One elderly women exclaimed, “I’m so glad you came. I don’t have any more wood and no money to buy any.”
Your generosity also provided hand sanitizing stations for their church, food and other supplies. Sanitizer stations eliminate the need to handle bottles-further preventing the spread of germs and keeping the elderly and handicapped safe.
You helped Sacred Heart Cathedral provide 7 families with $100 each when they needed it most and meals to many who come to the church for help during these unprecedented times. You provided urgently needed water, sanitizer, food boxes and food coupons to provide for families’ nutrition in Christ the King, St. Jude, and Our Lady of Fatima parishes. In doing so, you helped others to share in the collection, distribution, and sharing of these gifts. You facilitated a culture of empowering the poor and sharing the Gospel through acts of works of mercy. Thank you!
In the schools, you stocked food pantries and helped food insecure children receive the weekend bag program where meals are prepared and distributed to children so they have food for the weekend. The daily lunches and to go bags helped my family tremendously! I don’t have to worry whether they have brain food or not. I am super grateful our school is able to help families like mine.” Again, by your grace, you helped others to reach out and help their neighbors. Many of the children picking up meals were local school kids who needed help. You ministered to them through their neighbors. Thank you!
You also provided volunteer teachers who give their time with stipends and PPE equipment like masks, gloves and cleaning supplies – all needed to resume learning activities. Each school community within the larger community choosing where and how to help each other. Because of you so many lives were impacted. “We extend our gratitude and that of our people to Catholic World Missions and their donors for blessing us with their care and generosity.”
Feeding the Children of Georgia
Feeding the Children of Georgia
Mercy Missions Atlanta
Mercy Missions Atlanta is a faith-based, youth organization that is committed to serving the local community, forming disciples, and evangelizing the Gospel.
On a monthly basis, Mercy Missions Atlanta purposefully hosts mission opportunities for young adults and high-school teens. Through their missions, teens and young adults gather in community to share testimonies and become empowered to encounter strangers with the same compassion that Christ has for each of us.
For example, some missions include distributing “hygiene kits” to the homeless that contain an assortment of socks, soap, toothbrushes, food, water, and more.
In order to further extend their helping hands, Mercy Missions Atlanta partners with other local nonprofits in hopes of serving even more brothers and sisters in need.
Providing Meals to Young Students in Georgia
Due to the rapid spread of COVID-19 within the United States, it has become especially important to stay healthy, safe, and well-nourished. Unfortunately, many families were unprepared to stay home for an extended period of time and are currently struggling to put food on the table.
This Summer, in partnership with Smart Lunch Smart Kid (SLSK), Mercy Missions Atlanta is taking action by providing meals to children who rely on the government and school systems for food during the school year. Since the pandemic, regular in-person school years were cut short, extending the need for those dependent on the school system for food.
With your help, Mercy Missions Atlanta and Smart Lunch Smart Kid can provide 1,200 children with meal-boxes that provide nourishment for an entire day. Each meal-box contains prayer cards and 3 nutritious meals, for a total of 3,600 meals! This mission will directly serve school-aged children across the state of Georgia including the cities of Smyrna, Atlanta, Roswell, etc. Furthermore, the project will teach young missionaries to serve through teamwork and hands-on activities.
COVID-19 has made it difficult for many organizations to reach the same volume that they would under normal circumstances. To combat this limitation, all meals will be collected and packed by Mercy Missions Atlanta’s young adults to then be distributed by Smart Lunch Smart Kids at designated “drop sites”.
At Catholic World Mission, we support the initiative of Mercy Missions Atlanta and Smart Lunch Smart Kids (SLSK) to alleviate the hunger of young children around Georgia. Click on the green button on this page to donate.
At Catholic World Mission, we support the initiative of Mercy Missions Atlanta and Smart Lunch Smart Kids (SLSK) to alleviate the hunger of young children around Georgia.
Thanks to your generosity, the 2020 Meal-Boxing Mission was a wonderful success! As seen in the “Thank You” video, 15 young adults safely participated in the mission and packaged over 1100 meal boxes. Your support was instrumental in providing nourishing meals to young students throughout the state of Georgia.
Click to See More Pictures of the Meal-Boxing Mission Below:
Forming Leaders in the Faith
Forming Leaders in the Faith
70% of Catholics Will Leave the Church
Through the guidance of the Holy Spirit we are responding to the many prayers requests we receive every day for your daughter, son, niece, nephew, granddaughter, grandson, neighbor’s child, etc. who have left the faith once they entered college.
70% of Catholics will leave the church after high school and will never return. We must help build the bridge that has seemed to collapse carrying faithful Catholics through young adulthood. This is the least served group within the Church, but the group that can make the most difference.
By partnering with Catholic Campus Ministry programs we will help bridge the gap in hopes of forming future leaders in our faith. We don’t want lack of finances to prevent students from participating in the many faith formation opportunities helping them foster a stronger relationship with Christ.
Read more in the tabs to see how we are beginning to answer this call by partnering with the Catholic Student Union at Florida State University. Together we can help young people find their community, their purpose, their faith and their mission.
“With Christ as the center of your life, you will never be disappointed” – Pope Francis
Catholic Center Program at Florida State University
We are partnering with the Catholic Student Union (CSU) at Florida State University in forming future leaders in our Catholic faith. CSU has been meeting college students where they are at and inviting them into a relationship with Jesus Christ since 1947. CSU is run by the Brotherhood of Hope, a community of religious brothers, and staff.
The CSU is a college campus ministry that reaches out to thousands of students each year from The Florida State University (FSU) and the Tallahassee Community College (TCC). CSU provides several opportunities for students to experience an encounter with Jesus Christ. CSU does this by hosting and facilitating various events throughout the semester, incorporating St. John Paul ll’s vision for the “New Evangelization”, relational evangelization and discipleship formation and preparing them for the next steps after graduation.
CSU offers many opportunities for the students who are “poor in spirit” to become immersed in their faith. The projects are designed for students to encounter Christ through “relational formation” and eventually “discipleship formation”. As they deepen their own relationship with Christ they become disciples for Christ. Fulfilling Jesus’ Great Commandment: “You shall love…God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength…You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
CSU provides many programs for students including:
- A Spirit Nite (Faith Formation/Hot Topics discussion) every Wednesday when schools is in session
- Men’s and women’s small groups – weekly meetings
- Bible study
- Two annual retreats
- Men’s and women’s retreats
- International and national mission trips
- Attend March for Life
- Volunteer in the local area to serve the poor and homeless
- Invite students to participate in a conference entitled School of the New Evangelization (SNE) every August
- Social Events: Halloween Party, Christmas Party, Sports events
Each of these different forms of “relational formation” and “discipleship formation” are designed to assist the student to continue to grow in their faith, gain leadership skills and continue in deepening their faith in Christ. So as they graduate from college they are able to go out and change the world through the new found calling to holiness and in particular to marriage, to priesthood or religious life.
The formation begins when they encounter Christ through our campus ministers and student leaders. One of the major avenues they experience this encounter is at the CSU bi-annual retreat. CSU has on average 200 students who attend a given retreat. The students are provided with opportunities to share their faith by listening to talks given by CSU Staff/other guest speakers and student leaders, praise and worship, small groups and fellowship. It helps them to get connected with their peers who are growing in their faith to become selfless in love, to have a personal prayer life and evangelistic outreach. They experience this love for Christ also in our Men’s and Women’s retreats and small groups. With this deepening personal relationship with Christ, the Light of the world, they will be able to bear His Light into a world darkened by sin.
As the students grow in their faith they want to act on it. CSU provides the students multiple opportunities to serve. CSU provides this growth through our service projects and mission trips. They offer every year, three different mission trips that we hold during FSU’s spring break. This year, they had 16 men head to New York to serve the poor and homeless. They had 16 women who served the poor and homeless in Alabama. The international trip went to Haiti where 12 men and women served with the Missionaries of Charity. Each trip provides the student to grow in appreciation, understanding and of giving oneself to Christ. A big part of the students growing in their understanding of true selfless love is by serving the homeless and the poor.
CSU also provides student leaders the opportunity to experience and deepen their faith and grow in their understanding of their baptismal call to discipleship by attending the School of the New Evangelization (SNE) conference in St. Paul, MN hosted by St. Paul’s Outreach. It is a one week conference that is held at the beginning of August right before a new college school year begins. The conference gives the students the opportunity to deepen their faith through orthodox teaching, prayer and community living with over 200 other teachers and college students across the country. The response from the students who want to attend the conference has been overwhelming.
By God’s Grace, CSU has Produced Abundant Fruit
There have been hundreds of beautiful marriages and many who have responded to His invitation to the priesthood and to religious life. Specifically, CSU has helped form approximately 30 men who have entered the seminary with nine having already been ordained priests within the Diocese of Pensacola-Tallahassee and with men in seminary formation for another five dioceses; eight women have entered vowed religious life; four women are currently at the novitiate or postulant level; five religious men (two of which are priests as well) have entered religious communities; and one man is a religious novice. These men and women serve all over the world. All of these inspiring vocations to the priesthood, religious life, and marriage have had a major impact in diocesan offices, public and private schools (education), the business and medical fields, parishes, family life, and more. We also have men and women who currently are part of missions to the poor in Haiti, Honduras, Peru, and the United States.
Across the country, we have alumni who are serving their parishes in different capacities, including youth ministries, liturgical ministry, marriage preparation, elderly care, and ongoing men’s and women’s groups to carry on the relational evangelization and discipleship formation that they received here in the CSU outreach.
“I started going to daily Mass while I was in college at Florida State University. No one required this of me, and no one had to. It was attractive because CSU made it easy to recognize the friendship and community that was generated by sharing in the Church’s prayer together each day. To pause and listen together to the Word of God and to be fed by Christ’s Body and Blood: it was the rhythm of this prayer life of the Church that gave a foundation to my closest friendships.” – Reverend James Grebe – Alumnus – Class of 2005
“I thoroughly enjoyed being a part of the Bible Study small groups when I was involved in CSU during undergrad. It was in these small groups that we were able to really explore how God was calling us to live out our faith through scripture. We gained insight into the history behind each reading and then discussed how it related to us in our own lives. The Bible study fostered a sense of real community for me; the group both encouraged and challenged me to grow in my faith!” – Claire Butler – Alumna – Class of 2012
“My involvement with the Respect Life Committee of the Catholic Student Union laid the foundation necessary for the work God has called me to in the medical profession. As an Ob/Gyn physician today, my practice motto “Respecting the Dignity of Women and Building a New Culture of Life,” can be traced to my formation and involvement with CSU.” – Damon Cudihy, MD – Class of 1999
“When I reflect on my experience at CSU, weekly Spirit Nites, retreats, service trips, etc., I am reminded how deeply grateful I am. It has been 1 years since I graduated and there are two main lessons I learned that have helped me immensely in my family and professional life. At CSU I learned how to pray and I learned how to lead. While I continue to learn lessons in both prayer and leadership, I can definitely say they have their origin in my experience at CSU. As a husband, father of five, and business owner, I can tell you that without the foundation I received at CSU, I would not have been nearly as well prepared for the challenging adventure of life.” – Justin Biance – Alumnus – Class of 2001
Spring Break Mission to Jamaica
This Spring Break, 16 students from the Florida State University Catholic Student Union spent their time in Jamaica – not relaxing on the beach as one might expect, but giving of themselves wholeheartedly as they worked alongside the Missionaries of the Poor.
These inspirational students devoted themselves to the poorest of the poor, serving in five homes in the community (two for women, two for men, and one for children) for residents with mental and physical disabilities, patients with HIV, and elderly men and women who had been abandoned by their families. In their own words, each day the students, “served at a different center, and the residents of each house welcomed us with enormous hugs, hand-holding, and shouts of joy. Throughout our time of service, we cleaned, prepared meals, helped feed the residents, made up beds, folded laundry, cleaned wounds, and –most of all –spent time with the people we were serving, which was full of prayer, moving conversations, and overflowing love.”
Thanks to your support, these student were able to not only bring the love and light of Christ to those in desperate need, but felt God moving in and around them – filling them with love and enabling them to serve as Christ’s hands and feet. These students have had an encounter with Christ that moved them deeply and will stay with them, deepening their faith, for their whole lives, teaching them to see God in every aspect of life. Through you these Catholic youth feel the call of Christ, not only towards their work in Jamaica but a call they bring home with them to share the Gospel and Christ’s love everywhere!
“We are called to be missionaries and disciples of Jesus wherever we are. We were exhorted to “be the bridge” when we return home. As we sit in the graces of this trip, we are to take the love of Christ that we encountered through this experience and share it with others who have not encountered that love.”
Spring Break Mission Trip to Jamaica
16 students from the Florida State University Catholic Student Union headed down to Jamaica to spend their Spring Break on a mission trip serving the people there. The group served at a preschool, as well as communities of elderly, orphans, and children with disabilities.
Student Kevin McNaughton shares his profound experience, “An experience that significantly impacted me in Jamaica occurred at the final visit we made… One of the elderly residents joined us outside for praise and worship. Although we had brought a guitar to play, the gentleman and his friend picked up the bongo and tambourine and started belting praises to the Lord. [We all] danced with the residents with tears in their eyes. I remember standing behind the man and seeing the strength that he had in the Lord while proclaiming His name. It was at that moment, that I realized the dignity and beauty that every person there possessed. This man wasn’t in full health, nor was he living with his family, yet he still praised God for the life he was given. I realized that in whatever circumstance I find myself, my mouth should always proclaim the graces the Lord has given me and how truly good my heavenly Father is.”
Thanks to your generosity, young people in the United States are experiencing the love of Jesus Christ in new and profound ways. The students from the Catholic Student Union go on mission trips every Spring and Summer break; for many it is where they decide to include Christ in their lives for the rest of their lives. You can continue supporting this mission by visiting our United States donation page.
Bring Souls to God
Bring Souls to God
Regnum Christi Mission Corps
The RC Mission Corps program is an apostolate of the Regnum Christi Movement which seeks to help young people have an authentic experience of Jesus Christ through active Apostleship in communities, schools and parishes throughout the world.
Since Regnum Christi has the unique purpose to be at the service of the Church and mankind, the RC Mission Corps Program seeks to reawaken others to the mystery of Christ’s love for them and to their commitment of living out their An RC Missionary is a committed apostle of Christ and the Church who through the charism and spirituality of Regnum Christi seeks to bring souls to God by giving one or more years of his/her life in service of God’s people vocation in Christ.
The RC Mission Corps Program seeks to form Missionaries in Spiritual, Social, Intellectual, and Apostolic dimensions so that he/she is educated and formed in the teachings of the Catholic Church so as to empower them to go out and “travel on the path of love” which God has called them on.
Working through parishes, schools and service organizations, young missionaries touch up to 4,000 people in their time of service.
The RC Missionaries serve in: Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, Washigton, and Manila, Philippines
RCMC Alumni ’14
RCMC Alumni ’14
RCMC Alumni ’14
RCMC Alumni ’14
RCMC Alumni ’14
23 Young People Dedicated Themselves to Give a Year of Their Life to the Lord
In the Fall of 2016, 23 young people dedicated themselves to give a year of their life to the Lord through Regnum Christi Mission Corps. This program allows young people to experience Christ by serving others. Before the missionaries enter into the program they spend six weeks in training, learning Catholic Skills and ECYD methodology. ECYD methodology is forming conscious decisions, experiences, and convictions with Christ at the center. Prayer is at the center of their mission, ensuring that they remain close to Christ to live the missionary life fully. Regnum Christi Missionaries have the unique opportunity to go deeper spiritually, intellectually, and emotionally through leadership development, vocational discernment, prayer life, and Catholic formation. This year the missionaries are spreading the Gospel in Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, Philadelphia, Washington DC, and The Philippines.
The team in Houston recently completed their first retreat; Ana Paula Sanchez, an RC Missionary, shared, “We just had our first retreat for 6th & 8th grade, and the theme was “He Looked at Me and He Loved Me”. In the retreat, the girls were able to see how Jesus saw them and how much He loves them. One of the moms told me that her daughter’s favorite part was being able to go to a chapel to pray her morning and night prayers, and she hopes to have a chapel in her house when she grows up so she can pray.”
The missionaries in Philadelphia go door to door in their community to promote the Healing/Adoration Service the team will organize. One of the goals is to revitalize the struggling local Parish. The Regnum Christi Mission Corps program provides young people with the opportunity to be witnesses of Christ to others.
Fr. José Félix, LC runs St. Peter’s Catholic Parish, located in a very low-income area bordering the Bronx in Yonkers, NY, is a vibrant community with average weekend Mass attendance of almost exactly 2,000 people, a religious education program of over 450 students and about 300 kids active in youth groups. Hispanic immigrants make up over 80% of our community.
Last year, in order to empower the faith formation of the community, they created for the first time small groups that meet weekly in houses to pray and receive formation. In October 2013, about 90 small groups were created with about 900 participants in total. Though many of the groups persevered for a couple months, by the end of the year only about 20 groups were still active. The spiritual fruits seen in those groups, however, were astounding.
This drop-off can be attributed to many factors: they’ve learned a lot about the infrastructure necessary for the leadership of the initiative, how to get all parish groups on board, and what forms of follow-up are effective, but most of all what hurt them was the almost complete lack of good Catholic material for small group formation.
Three Weeks of Healing
With Fr. Shane Johnson, LC
Adore the Lord Your God, and Only Him
Jesus Is Alive and Heals Your Heart
Jesus Is Alive and Heals Your Illnesses
Con P. José Helio Cantú, LC
Adorarás al Señor tu Dios y Solo a él Darás Culto
Jesús está Vivo y Sana tu Corazón
Jesús está Vivo y Sana tus Enfermedades
Launching the Initiative
In October 2014, St. Peter’s Catholic Parish relaunched the initiative. Once again they had 90 groups meeting and the first campaign began which was FOCUS founder Curtis Martin’s “Made for More” with videos of St. Peter’s priests and discussion questions that they developed themselves. This year’s plan was developed in coordination with all the priests on staff and the entire parish council. They have also added more “coaches” to help the leaders of each group and pledged to the people that we will use only Catholic materials, but for any given campaign of 4-6 weeks, they need materials both in English and Spanish. The campaigns are planned to fit the Catholic liturgy and their homily themes as closely as possible.
The topics for last years campaigns were the following:
- ADVENT: Reasons for Hope (4 weeks)
- CHRISTMAS SEASON: The Family God Planned (5 weeks)
- ORDINARY TIME BEFORE LENT: God is My Doctor (healing) (3 weeks)
- LENT: God is Faithful, though I am a sinner (5 weeks)
- EASTER: Basic Apologetics (5 weeks)
- SUMMER/OT 1st campaign: Praying with the Psalms (5 weeks)
- SUMMER/OT 2nd campaign: The Eucharist, leading up to the “Siege of Jericho” parish adoration event (5 weeks)
- SUMMER/OT 3rd campaign: My Relationship with My Brothers and Sisters (Letter of St. James) (5 weeks)
- FALL RELAUNCH CAMPAIGN: We are Lost and We Need Help (5 weeks)
Participants attending weekly Masses, requests for Sacraments, and children enrolled in Religious Education classes have increased. Father Ortega is convinced these increases are the fruit of the small group/faith-formation programs.