Strengthening Families. Building Communities. Reducing Poverty.

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It is June and that means it’s time for one of the best international holidays: World Refugee Day. This holiday might not get a lot of attention, however it is anoccasion for exciting celebrations. In 2000, the United Nations General Assembly declared June 20th World Refugee Day, and since 2001 every year around June 20th cities throughout the world celebrate the accomplishments, traditions, and contributions of refugees. This year Catholic Charities participated in World Refugee Day festivities on Tuesday, June 20th. The World Refugee Day event was hosted by Levine Museum of the New South and Refugee Charlotte. Refugee Charlotte is a group of local individuals working directly with newly resettled families through non-profit organizations and resettlement agencies. Catholic Charities, Carolina Refugee Resettlement Agency, ourBridge for Kids, Central Piedmont Community College, and Refugee Support Services are some of the agencies that participated in the planning process. During the event, participants were shown the documentary After Spring, which is a film that focuses on the Syrian crisis. Participants were able to see what it is like to live in Zaatari, the largest refugee camp for Syrians. The film followed two families and the aid workers who helped them. Around 100 people were
“Make sure that you always remain as joyful disciples of the Lord and joyful witnesses to the Gospel of Life.”   Bishop Peter J. Jugis spoke these encouraging words as he addressed the hundreds of faithful North Carolinians present at the North Carolina Mass for the Unborn on Friday, January 27th, 2017. This year, the National March for Life in Washington, D.C., took place on the last Friday of January. Pro-life advocates from across the country marched together up Constitution Avenue toward the Capitol Building to advocate for the unborn in a peaceful demonstration. Attendance at this year’s March for Life is said to be the highest it has ever been. Vice President Mike Pence and Kellyanne Conway, Senior Counselor to President Trump, both spoke at the rally preceding the march. Before congregating at the National Mall with fellow Americans, the faithful North Carolinian pilgrims gathered at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception for the North Carolina Mass for the Unborn celebrated by Bishop J. Jugis of the Diocese of Charlotte. Many priests of both the Diocese of Charlotte and the Diocese of Raleigh joined him. Bishop Jugis provided a beautiful homily at this Mass. He reminded
  In January, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) intensify their call for Catholics to engage in prayer and activities to help build a respect for innocent human life in society (visit http://www.usccb.org/about/pro-life-activities/).  Around the nation, Catholics participate in numerous events to mark the January 22, 1973 Supreme Court decisions (Roe v. Wade, and Doe v. Bolton) that legalized, in all 50 states, the taking of defenseless and innocent unborn human life.  Several employees of Catholic Charities will join hundreds of thousands of marchers who will travel to Washington, D.C, to give witness, voice and prayer in the shadow of Capitol Hill in support of executive, legislative and judicial action to protect the fundamental and God-given right to life of unborn children.  Please pray for the success of the March for Life on January 27 and for the safety of all participants.  In the week following the March for Life, Catholic Charities' Respect Life Program Director Jessica Grabowski will share her reflections on the March for Life in a CCDOC blog post.   The U.S. Bishops also seek to raise awareness of poverty across our nation in the month of January, and to this end, the USCCB highlights January as “Poverty Awareness Month.”  Learn more about
Happy Respect Life Month! I am pleased to broadcast that October is Respect Life Month. October 1st kicked off a new chapter of Respect Life with the start of a new USCCB Respect Life Program for the year. The USCCB Secretariat of Pro-Life Activities publishes new Respect Life Program materials each year to highlight various Respect Life issues put forth at the start of Respect Life Month (First Sunday in October). These annual materials respond to the needs of parishes, schools and other ministries for basic presentations of life issues. This year’s Respect Life Program theme is Moved by Mercy. This theme is exceptionally fitting this year. As we draw near to the end of the Jubilee Year of Mercy, we are reminded that we are called to continue this theme of mercy in our ministries throughout this next year, and in our lives. His Holiness, Pope Francis reminds us that “We are called to show mercy because mercy has first been shown to us.” We are called to promote life and defend life always. Learn more about the 2016-2017 USCCB Respect Life Program here. http://www.usccb.org/about/pro-life-activities/respect-life-program/index.cfm This year’s Respect Life Program is emphasized in liturgies and featured through a variety of

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  “Most of the most important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.” - Dale Carnegie After many years in the nonprofit field, I firmly believe that the secret formula to help our clients achieve their God Given potential is Hope + Empowerment + goals= Case Management. Hope is a powerful feeling, and a powerful tool to inspire our clients to take action, to take that first step, to reach out for help, knowing that there is somebody, a relative, a priest, their spouse, a social worker, an agency believing in them, supporting them and walking the journey with them. I have learned that case management is an intricate process that involves assessing the individual’s needs, identifying their strengths as a tool to help them reach their goals, and knowing realistically the barriers preventing them succeed. Furthermore, since I started working with Catholic Charities I learned that a Social Service provider/case worker means something different. It means to establish a relationship of trust, to be able to put myself in my client’s shoes and walk their walk. Understanding their situation, their circumstances, their background everything
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