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What’s New

Sisters of St. Francis Support Catholic Charities 2019 Annual Appeal

Heartfelt thanks to our Sisters of St. Francis for supporting Catholic Charities 2019 Annual Appeal during the month of May.

The Sisters are always held close to our hearts and in our prayers. Their collaboration and assistance in telling the story of our mission is a priceless blessing. (Table and materials that “tell the story” of Catholic Charities — located in back of Assisi Heights Chapel — Rochester, MN.) What an honor it is to have your support and compassion.

Thank you Sisters for all you do on behalf of the marginalized and vulnerable we serve! 

~Mary Alessio

Butterfly Brilliance from a Caterpillar Crawl…

I don’t know about you, but I have fond memories of lying belly down on a warm, summer sidewalk – face to face with a fuzzy caterpillar inching it’s way my direction. Do you remember the last time you held a caterpillar and felt it twirl its way around your fingertip; dreaming about the beautiful butterfly it would be transformed into one day?

It is difficult to imagine that a caterpillar will become a beautiful butterfly one day. As famed architect and inventor Richard Buckminster Fuller noted, “There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells you and me it is going to be a butterfly.”… Read the full article

April 11th, 2019|Categories: News & Announcements|

A Question for Dessert

“A Question for Dessert?”

by Mary Alessio—Director of Advancement

I recently had dinner with someone who was intrigued by the mission of Catholic Charities. My friend posed this question:  Why does Catholic Charities take care of those who are not Christian?  In all honesty, this was a “heavy” dessert question when I would have preferred a little crème brulee.  But, it just shows that God puts us in positions to live the mission of Catholic Charities 24/7 and I felt humbled to offer my response.   

As we all know from the Gospels, Jesus did not limit his ministry and saving grace to only the Jewish people. He did not condition his healing, compassion, and love to certain groups or tribes of people.  It was open to all, without exceptions.

The stories of the centurion, the woman at the well, the Canaanite woman, and the Good Samaritan are all examples of non-Jews blessed by Jesus or whose example of compassion and caring is held as a model for us.  Jesus’ saving grace was there for all – regardless of age, gender, ethnic background, or faith tradition, in the words of Catholic Charities’ branding message.

Years ago my Irish Catholic Mum gifted my brothers and me with a series of books (In Conversation with God, by Fransisco Fernandez Carvajal).  I’ve always held dear a particular section that addressed my dinner companion’s question:  

A Christian’s calling makes us open and respectful to others, one who is able to reach an understanding with the most diverse kinds of people, regardless of their age, their cultural background, their personality, their character or their circumstances. The Holy Spirit acts where there is unity and true charity. Our task as Christians entrusted to us by God is not to exclude anyone; we do not leave any soul out of our love for Christ.

I am humbled and honored to have served many whose faith traditions differ from mine. I hold their friendship dear and they are family to me. I routinely receive loving texts at Christmas and Easter from friends who are Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, or Buddhist.

In closing, our primary value at Catholic Charities is:  Made in God’s image and likeness, every human life has dignity.  No exceptions!  

Love your way~

Mary Alessio
April 5th, 2019|Categories: News & Announcements|

The Vitality of VITA Program (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance)

The Vitality of VITA Program (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance)

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA) provides sense of community and personal satisfaction for volunteers; free income tax preparation and larger refund checks for individuals who use the service. VITA provides free tax preparation assistance to income-eligible individuals and families.  During the 2017-2018 income tax season, 40 trained VITA volunteers completed state and federal tax returns that generated $812,602.00 in tax dollars returned to 1,026 Winona county residents Read more (PDF)

April 5th, 2019|Categories: News & Announcements|

Catholic Charities Green Policy

“We show our respect for the Creator by our stewardship of creation. Care for the earth is not just an Earth Day slogan, it is a requirement of our faith.  We are called to protect people and the planet, living our faith in relationship with all of God’s creation. This environmental challenge has fundamental moral and ethical dimensions that cannot be ignored.”
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB)

Read the Catholic Charities Green Policy

March 25th, 2019|Categories: News & Announcements|

Parish Social Ministry Program Centers Work on Life and Dignity of the Human Person

Seeks to Respond in Love in an Increasingly Polarized Society

Parish Social Ministry (PSM) is the one Catholic Charities program that directly focuses on Catholic Social Teaching and how those principles find expression in parish life.  And one of the primary principles of Catholic Social Teaching is the Life and Dignity of the Human Person from conception until natural death. …

Read the complete article

March 8th, 2019|Categories: News & Announcements|