We are a new group in the 2019-2020 school year made up of high school seniors who want to make a difference in people’s’ lives. Our goals are to be role models for others and to inspire faith in younger kids.
This year we will be running two retreats with Family Faith. The first one is an Ignite retreat from February 1st to 2nd. It will include new faith formation experiences as well as a glow party. The second one is a retreat for sophomores, juniors, and seniors February 22nd to 23rd. This will also include faith experiences but also a live praise and worship band. Both of these retreats will take place at Holy Family.
GLOW will be doing service projects in the upcoming months. Our first one is making fleece blankets for those struggling with stable housing. Teens can join us at Faith on Fire March 15th to make the blankets. Further information about distribution will be forthcoming. If you would like to donate fleece, please drop it off in the container in the Narthex coat closet. *Donations need to be 2 1/2 yards to 3 yards in length.
Our Middle School Genesis One Club recently won the Keep Northern Illinois Beautiful Earth Day Hutchcroft Youth Award for championing efforts to reduce waste in our cafeteria. Caring for God’s creation is a tenet of Catholic Social Justice and part of our school culture. You can see it in our restored wetland and prairie gardens in our nationally certified outdoor classroom, you can see it in our curriculum, and you can see it in our cafeteria—of all places!
Our Genesis One Club recently won the Keep Northern Illinois Beautiful Earth Day Hutchcroft Youth Award for championing efforts to reduce waste in our cafeteria. HFCA has over 525 students enrolled in preschool through grade 8. On any given day, up to 400 students eat lunch in our cafeteria. Changing the operation and culture of a school cafeteria is a daunting task, but these middle school students embraced the challenge.
We now compost an average of 70 pounds of food waste weekly and rescue another 30 pounds of uneaten food to share with less fortunate families within our community.
The Genesis One Club encourages all of our students to care for our environment by reducing more, reusing more and recycling more.
Their persistent stewardship is a model for all of our students and staff. They are thinkers, leaders grounded in faith!
This year’s Lenten Social Justice project intended to humanize the immigration issue impacting millions of people in our world today by. recognizing its complexity and emphasizing accompaniment of people on their journey.
Respecting the human dignity of every individual is the first and foremost Catholic social teaching. The seven main teachings include: Respecting Human Dignity; Call to Family, Community, and Participation; Rights and Responsibilities; Option for the Poor and Vulnerable; The Dignity of Work and the Rights of Workers; and living in Solidarity with our brothers and sisters everywhere.
Two key initiatives were the main focus over the 6-week Lenten period. The two initiatives are:
Kino Border Initiative (KBI) promotes U.S./Mexico border and immigration policies that affirm the dignity of the human person and a spirit of bi-national solidarity through direct assistance and education. Every year, thousands of migrant men, women and children are deported to Nogales, Sonora, Mexico or arrive in the city fleeing from Central America. They often arrive with only the clothes on their backs and a small plastic bag that contains their belongings. They often do not know where to turn to receive a meal, find shelter and to make a phone call. They also arrive emotionally and psychologically devastated, due to separation from their family members or the inability to work legally in the United States.
The Holy Family Fund is a program provided by Catholic Extension in partnership with local Catholic Charities offices. It provides emergency funds and services to a family after one or more of the undocumented income earning adults in the home are detained or deported by the US government. The families contribute to the fund on a monthly basis ($20 for an individual, $30 for a couple). The participant becomes eligible by enrolling through an agency such as Catholic Charities and paying their monthly fee to the Holy Family Fund. After the needs of the family are assessed, the family may receive benefits up to $5000 per enrolled participant to help pay for rent or house payments, utilities, health care, etc. to maintain stability for the family.
Our goal was raise a total of $25,000 for the two programs, both supported by Catholic Extension Society. Because of our parish’s overwhelming generosity, we presented Catholic Extension Society a check on Sunday, June 9th, for $73,848 which will be split between the Kino Border Initiative and the Holy Family Fund. Thank you Holy Family for far exceeding our financial goal!
Letter From Cardinal Cupich
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
Blessings to you in this joyful season of Easter. In keeping with my pledge to update you on the Church’s efforts regarding safeguarding of children, I want to share an important step taken by Pope Francis. This past Friday he published an executive order mandating that all bishops implement a new universal law requiring all dioceses and religious orders to report abuse of minors and vulnerable adults. The new law provides a process for investigating abuse by any member of the hierarchy, including cardinals, bishops and priests as well as religious men and women. There is also a process for investigating the mishandling of such cases by bishops. Now, all bishops’ conferences and religious congregations in every country around the world will have to meet more rigorous standards.
This unprecedented development comes less than three months after the Holy Father’s meeting in Rome with all religious superiors and presidents of bishops’ conferences from around the world. On that occasion the Pope promised concrete action. The announcement today, along with the norms he published earlier for the Vatican City State, demonstrate his resolve to put an end to cover ups and take decisive action to rid the Church of the scourge of abuse of minors. For your convenience, you can read the full statement the archdiocese released on the law. I invite you to share this information with your family members and friends. As I noted in that statement: "While this new law validates many of the procedures already in place in the Archdiocese of Chicago and in the United States, it provides a framework for the bishops in this country to adopt measures at our June meeting that will both implement the Pope’s executive order and address the issue of holding everyone in the Church accountable."
As our auxiliary bishops and I prepare to attend that meeting in a few weeks, I pledge to you once again that I will do my best to see that our response in June, as well as our ongoing efforts in this regard, are marked by responsibility, accountability and transparency.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Archbishop of Chicago