Friday, May 17, 2013

God Bless Father John!

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Earlier this week Msgr. John Enzler, our president and CEO, celebrated his 40th Anniversary in the priesthood. What a milestone! Our headquarters on G Street has been abuzz this week with a huge outpouring of gratitude from the community, giving thanks for Father John's amazing and enthusiastic ministry to all of our neighbors here in the Archdiocese of Washington. Take a look!

We were so inspired by this congratulatory letter from Cardinal Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington, written to Father John on this special occasion. 

 A beautiful Spiritual Bouquet from some dear friends of Father John's and Catholic Charities' - each petal marks prayers said on his behalf!

Father John celebrated Mass with Catholic Charities' Board of Directors...

And the Board presented Father John with this plaque to commemorate his milestone anniversary in the priesthood. The quote on it read: 

You can do something I can't do
I can do something you can't do.
Together let us do something
beautiful to God.
Mother Teresa

Please join us in congratulating Father John on his 40th anniversary in the priesthood - leave a note in the comment box below!

Did you know? Father John is on Twitter - catch his thoughts on service, spirituality, and of course his favorite DC sports teams @FrJohnEnzler

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Almost Anyone Can Find Themselves in Need

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When crisis hits, families like Andy and Sarah,
and Paul and Yuliis (pictured above) know they can count
on support from Catholic Charities.
Andy, his wife, Sarah, and their baby daughter, Bella (names changed to protect client privacy), are not the people you might expect to find turning to Catholic Charities for help. Andy had a good job and the family was getting along just fine.

Then Andy's car broke down. The repairs were just too costly to manage for a family who had just had a baby, and he lost his job since he had no other transportation to work. 

Suddenly even minor expenses - like diapers and baby food for Bella - were impossible to afford. So they turned to Catholic Charities' Montgomery County Family Center (MCFC), where they heard baby goods were available to families in need. But those urgent items were just the beginning of what they found there. 

Staff at the Family Center worked quickly to meet the family's urgent needs: necessities for Bella, food stamps so the parents could  eat, too. More than that, a caseworker worked with Andy to develop a new resume and conduct a job search. Shortly after, he was able to find stable work at a hotel valet - not his ideal job, but he's grateful for the income. 
 "Every time we pass through a tough time, we learn a lot of little things," he said.

Our MCFC is a tremendous resource. Moms and dads can take classes in parenting, nutrition, and money management. They get access to affordable healthcare and legal services, counseling for women with unexpected pregnancies, and referrals to other programs throughout the community. With their help, families and individuals face the future with renewed hope. 

Our 2013 Spring Forward Drive is in progress. Please consider a gift:

Sunday, May 12, 2013

I Love My Mom Because...

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Moms are such a special part of our lives - inspiring us to be the best version of ourselves. Mother's Day is a wonderful time to celebrate them!

Help us support new moms and new families in need with in-kind donations to our Baby Goods Drive - a great project for your family, parish, school, office, etc.! And don't forget to take a moment today to tell all the great women in your life how much you appreciate them. 

Happy Mother's Day from Catholic Charities!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Mom Finds Joy in her Son's New Smile

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Rosa (name changed) was living in the United States for several years when she received the best news of her life: her teenage son, James was emigrating from Honduras to join her in Silver Spring, Maryland.

The sadness of their separation was over, but Rosa could see that James was struggling with his new life, especially in school. Dental care simply had not been available to him in Honduras, and he had lost his two front teeth at a young age due to severe rot. He struggled to enunciate English words and was frustrated and unhappy.

James is taking great care of his teeth now
with help from Catholic Charities'
dental clinic staff.
But Rosa would not give up. She took James to Catholic Charities' dental clinics, where he saw Dr. Kesha Stephenson, a volunteer dentist who did her pediatric residency work with Howard University at our dental clinic.

"Nearly all his teeth had cavities," said Dr. Stephenson, who worked with James over a series of visits. "It's quite common that in many parts of Latin America, limited access to care makes it very difficult to take care of your teeth."

James was fitted with a removable partial denture to replace his two front teeth, and at his mother's urging (he might say nagging!), began embracing his dental hygiene. It's made all the difference for him at school, Rosa said. 

"He is back to smiling his beautiful smile. I can tell he has so much more confidence now."

So many moms right here in our neighborhood are trying to care for their families in the face of tremendous challenges: poverty, homelessness, abuse, hunger, unemployment. Maybe, like Rosa, they don't have health insurance. Fortunately, we offer them a place to turn at their hour of need, regardless of their faith or background, and restore their hope for a brighter tomorrow. 

Please help mothers in our area who are in need or who are worried about providing for their children. Can you make a Mother's Day gift today in honor of your mom to help mothers and families? With your support, we can make sure that their child will always have a reason to smile. Please help now.