Discipleship Stewardship What's new at Nativity

Charity at Home

October 8, 2010

Some days are just more interesting than others.
Yesterday was one of those days for me.  

Our Missions Director, Brian Crook, and the co-Chair of our Strategic Planning Team, Jim Hayden, spent the day touring Catholic Charities programs and services in and around Baltimore.  Our guide was Nativity Parishioner Bill McCarthy, who is the Executive Director at Charities.  It is a great big organization, with lots of different programs in very different places, serving very, very different people.  And it takes a lot of people and money to make it all work.  

We visited a shelter for homeless and abused women in downtown Baltimore, a program providing social and health services and legal support to Hispanic immigrants in Fells Point, a retirement and assisted living complex in West Baltimore, the Our Daily Bread Center and adjacent employment program in East Baltimore, and right here in Timonium, a residential facility for children with behavioral and emotional problems and a life care center for individuals with developmental disabilities. And as extensive as that tour was, there are many many more programs Charities runs we did not get a chance to see. They are the largest private provider of human services in the state of Maryland.

We were really impressed.  But our purpose was not just instructional.  We are interested in identifying what we are calling a “strategic partner” to work with long term, where we can direct our local mission outreach, much as we have done already in Nigeria, and are in the process of doing in Haiti.  Why?  Well, to focus our efforts for the greatest impact which, in turn, can more effectively raise parishioners interest and willingness to get involved in service and mission.  We have the goal of motivating and mobilizing every member to regular service in mission work by making it easy and accessible to do.  This is in  obedience to Jesus’ “Great” commission:

You will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, 
and in all Judea and Samaria, 
and to the ends of the earth.
Acts 1.8

That’s really three commissions, three missions: to our own city, to our part of the world, and to the other side of the world.  As a single community we can’t do everything, everywhere, but we can make a difference for some specific people we don’t even know, and we can do it as people of faith, to witness to our faith and to strengthen our faith.  

We’ll keep you posted.

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