Recognizing the growing need to help people with basic necessities during difficult economic times, the Diocese of Allentown has awarded 19 Poverty Relief Grants throughout its five counties.
The grants will help provide food and clothing to people who need them, and also help provide other day-to-day living expenses and critical needs in Lehigh, Northampton, Carbon, Schuylkill, and Berks counties.
A total of $94,000 was distributed, thanks to the generosity of parishioners in Catholic churches around the region, who contribute to a special Poverty Relief collection every year.
“The Poverty Relief Collection is another example of the generosity of the faithful people of the Diocese of Allentown,” said Monsignor David James, Vicar General. “Our parishes routinely help the poor and needy in their midst, and this collection adds to those local efforts.
“St. John tells us in his First Letter that ‘God is love.’ When we act in love or charity, we are most God-like because we are imitating God in the very essence of who He is. The Poverty Collection is great example of charity in action.”
Here is a list of this year’s grants:
- St. John XXIII Parish, Tamaqua — $4,000 for baby food for needy families.
- Central City Project, Central Catholic High School, Allentown — $2,000 for feeding the poor, including community dinners and an urban garden.
- Holy Guardian Angels Parish, Reading — $6,000 to help distribute food to the hungry.
- Monocacy Farms, Bethlehem — $6,000 for its community food program.
- St. Joseph Parish, Summit Hill — $7,000 to pay for food, fuel, shelter, and transportation for those in need.
- St. Joseph the Worker Parish, Orefield — $1,000 to feed the hungry.
- St. Francis Home, Shillington — $8,000 for care for the terminally ill.
- Divine Mercy Society of Immaculate Conception Parish, Jim Thorpe — $3,000 to help pay fuel bills and prescription costs for those in need.
- Servants to All, Pottsville — $5,000, for overnight shelter and a street outreach program.
- Cathedral Parish of St. Catharine of Siena St. Vincent de Paul Society, Allentown — $3,000 to help pay utilities and rent for the poor in Allentown.
- Catholic Charities, Allentown — $8,000 for school students who need counseling.
- Kids Clothing Closet at Holy Family Parish, Nazareth — $1,000 for clothing and diapers for people who cannot afford them.
- Holy Family Senior Living, Bethlehem — $8,000 to help residents who cannot afford to pay for needed personal items.
- Clare of Assisi House, Reading — $6,000, for services and housing for low-income women.
- St. Benedict Parish, Mohnton — $7,000 to pay for food, shelter, and aid for those facing utility shutoff.
- St. Vincent de Paul Society of Notre Dame of Bethlehem Parish, Bethlehem — $6,000 to help needy families facing eviction or utility shutoff.
- St. Francis of Assisi Parish, Allentown — $1,000 for needy families, including warm coats, clothing, and blankets.
- St. Anne Parish St. Vincent de Paul Society, Bethlehem — $6,000 for those who need housing.
- Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish, Bethlehem — $6,000 for emergency rent and utility cost assistance for community members in need.
The next Poverty Relief Collection will be taken up in all churches of the Diocese November 18 and 19, the weekend before Thanksgiving, once again providing the opportunity to use charity as a means of giving thanks to God for His blessings.