CHICAGO, May 7, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/
-- Bringing a message from Pope Francis, the Vatican's
Apostolic Papal Nuncio to the United
States, Archbishop Christophe Pierre, served as homilist
today at the Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago 100th Anniversary Mass of
Thanksgiving at Holy Name
As the largest Catholic Charities in the country, the Chicago
Archdiocese agency provides services to nearly 1 million people
each year. This year it celebrates 100 years of service and support
to anyone in need.
In his homily, Archbishop Pierre remarked to the 1,200 attendees
and 25 priests concelebrating the Mass that "you know all too well
the darkness of our world and of this great city – the tremendous
poverty, hunger, and violence. You know the fear and loneliness in
which many immigrants, many of whom are poor, are forced to live.
It is your love – our love- Catholic Charities – that will
illuminate this city."
"It is impressive that every 30 seconds someone turns to
Catholic Charities for help," said Cardinal Blase J. Cupich,
Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Chicago. "Catholic Charities is precisely
where Pope Francis calls us to be, a church out of itself and
present at the margins of society, where those who suffer are. We
are blessed in Chicago to have a
vigorous and vibrant Catholic Charities."
"Catholic Charities is the Church's field hospital in our most
desperate and under-resourced communities; a shining light in areas
that can feel covered in darkness," said Monsignor Michael Boland, President of Catholic Charities.
"Today 3,000 staff, 15,000 volunteers and more than 400 community
partners, including parishes, help us fulfill our mission of
providing compassionate care to anyone in need. Where Catholic
Charities is, we know there is hope."
From April 2017 – April 2018 Catholic Charities will celebrate the
100th anniversary milestone with a variety of special
events. On June 12, Cardinal Cupich
and Monsignor Boland will host a Civic Dinner at the Hilton
Chicago, with special guest Catholic Charities USA President & CEO Sister Donna Markham, OP, Ph.D. Other events will be
held throughout the year, including a fall symposium, "Building
Peaceful Communities," and a spring volunteer week. For details on
100th Anniversary celebrations, visit
Catholic Charities was founded just days after the country
entered World War I, at a time when women were left caring for
their families alone and children were left orphaned following the
flu epidemic. Cardinal Mundelein
called together a group of prominent businessmen to be the
fundraising arm of the Church. This initiative quickly evolved to
provide direct social services to those most in need.
The agency that began at the once gritty intersection of
Des Plaines and Randolph has grown to have more than 150
locations across the Archdiocese, in the most vulnerable and
Catholic Charities services span a wide range, including
housing, food, emergency assistance, counseling, veterans' needs,
senior services and support, child development, immigration and
refugee support, youth mentoring, and more.
The agency was a pioneer in social services, leading the way in
providing a holistic approach to both individuals and families in
need. It led the way in many innovative social service programs and
partnerships. It was the first to partner with Cook County to treat a DUI offense as a
medical condition; with the VA and HUD to open the first permanent
supportive housing for veterans, the St. Leo Campus; and with the
federal government to develop the Women, Infant and Children (WIC)
food centers in food desert communities, the first of its kind in
Commenting on the agency's future, Monsignor Boland added,
"There is a tremendous need for agencies such as Catholic
Charities, who are nimble and efficient, and also provide
compassionate care. At all times our staff treats each person who
comes to us with respect and dignity, with an ultimate goal of
helping them become as self-sufficient as possible. This year we
celebrate 'A Century of Hope' and reaffirm our commitment to the
next century of providing help and hope to all of those need us
Watch the 100th Anniversary Mass of Thanksgiving here:
Read Apostolic Papal Nuncio to the
United States, Archbishop Christophe Pierre's homily:
About Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago
Helping anyone in need since 1917, Catholic Charities of the
Archdiocese of Chicago is one
of the largest private, not-for-profit social service agencies
in the Midwest and the largest Catholic Charities in the country.
Every 30 seconds someone counts on Catholic Charities for help.
Catholic Charities fulfills the Church's role in the mission of
charity by providing compassionate, competent, professional
services that strengthen and support individuals, families and
communities. Each year Catholic Charities assists more than 1
million people in Cook and
Lake Counties without regard to
religious, ethnic or economic background as they journey on their
paths to self-sufficiency.
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SOURCE Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago