Mary, Mother of God parish is seeking an Outreach Ministries Manager to oversee the Soup Kitchen and Food Pantry at St. Thomas of Canterbury church (4827 N. Kenmore). We encourage parishioners to share this job description far and wide so we can get as many applicants as possible.
Qualified candidates should submit their resumes and cover letters to the parish office at email@example.com, 1220 W. Catalpa Ave., Chicago IL 606040 or call 773-561-5343.
Interview with the Society of St. Vincent de Paul
In 2023, members of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul revived an old branch of the society – also known as a conference – at Mary, Mother of God parish. Conference President Pamela Matambanadzo sat down to tell us about the Society, who they are, what they do, and how parishioners can get involved.
What is the Society of St. Vincent de Paul?
We are a network of friends inspired by Gospel values, growing in holiness, and seeking to build a more just world through personal relationships with and in service to people in need. (That is our mission statement). St Vincent de Paul himself said “go to the poor and there you will find God.” I feel those few words speak to what we do and why.
We are an international Catholic lay organization present in 155 countries. From the international perspective, it breaks down smaller and smaller as you get more local. Our conference is Mary, Mother of God Parish and we reactivated the Saint Ita conference which was first established in 1933.
Everyone is invited to join our circle of friends! In this country, we have roughly 47 million people living in poverty. Society in the US has approximately 85,000 members. As a small group we are aware that we cannot meet our goal to end poverty alone. We are constantly looking to increase our membership. God gives each of us so many different talents. It is your God-given skills and talents that we are asking our fellow parishioners to bring and join us. Even if it’s just volunteering an hour or two, there are ways that everybody can help. After all ‘many hands make light work’! - Nehemiah 3.
This week, 15 first-year students from Mt. Carmel High School came to Canterbury House (a ministry of Mary, Mother of God Parish) for a day of service and discussion. Director James Murphy lead students and their teachers in a discussion about the parish's Solidarity Gardens and what we can do to care for creation in our own lives.
The group then made sandwiches together and did homeless outreach in Uptown. They handed out sandwiches and spent time talking to our brothers and sisters living outside. It was a beautiful morning!
This past Sunday, September 24th, members of the St. Vincent de Paul Society with help from our Religious Education students hosted an ice-cream social in Jubilee Hall at Saint Ita church. Everyone at the parish was invited to learn about the society and its mission to serve the poor. Attendees talked with current members about their work while enjoying an ice-cream sundae.
Learn more about the society and how you can get involved in our local chapter by clicking here!
Photos courtesy: Carmela Dumas, Esperanza Guzman, & Pamela Matambanadzo.
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Last Wednesday, August 30th theology professor Bill Cavanaugh brought a class of incoming first-year students from DePaul University to visit our parish.
In the morning, the group volunteered at the St. Thomas of Canterbury Food Pantry and Solidarity Gardens and the St. Francis Catholic Worker. After lunch, James Murphy from Canterbury House — a ministry of Mary, Mother of God Parish — spoke to the students about the parish's outreach efforts in our soup kitchen, food pantry, and hospitality hours at Canterbury House.
Mark Franzen, director of St. Gregory’s Hall, led the students on a tour of the three parish churches focusing on the unique story each building tells about the faith and of the generations of immigrants who worshiped there. The afternoon was capped off with a tour of the studio of artist-in-residence Sarah Crow, who talked about her work and the relationship of the contemporary art world and sacred art.
On Monday, August 28 Canterbury House (a ministry of Mary, Mother of God Parish) hosted 25 first-year DePaul students as part of their orientation week. Students gathered with their professors in the St. Thomas of Canterbury Soup Kitchen along with Kathy Kelly — a renowned peace-activist, Catholic Worker, and writer — and Workers from St. Francis Catholic Worker.
After the discussion, the DePaul group finished their day with a tour of the parish's food pantry, soup kitchen, and one of our new solidarity gardens.
Read past issues of our parish's outreach newsletter which focuses on the Food Pantry and Soup Kitchen at St. Thomas of Canterbury Church.
On Sunday, June 11 (Corpus Christi), we had a formal blessing for Solidarity Gardens at St. Thomas of Canterbury - and some of our neighbors asked for blessings of their gardens as well!
Solidarity Gardens is a collaboration of Mary, Mother of God parish churches and St. Francis Catholic Worker. We are gardening together in our community to provide food for our Soup Kitchen, Food Pantry, and people in our neighborhoods in need.
Parish communities can be creative communities. Our Eucharistic faith calls us to make the land fruitful and offer our gifts to God. In Laudato Si’, Pope Francis draws our attention to the concept of Integral Ecology– the idea that the health of our church and community depends on the health of the land around us. If you are interested in gardening, have experience (or none!), have always wanted to garden, like being outside then we're looking for you! Contact James Murphy at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions and to get involved.