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Unpacking our stories…

Posted: July 01, 2014

As I look back at the last year, I feel privileged to have an opportunity to hold so many of your stories. You have shared your hopes and dreams for Social Justice. You have worked on projects and ministries that are close to your hearts. You have shown up in so many different ways!

Some of the highlights include: 

  • Social Justice Fall Forum with some of the leading thought leaders in the country. 
  • We held our Annual Gala for Brighter Tomorrows with the World Class Saint Paul Hotel!
  • We went to the legislature to advocate for the Social Benefit  Corporation legislation and the $100 million dollar request to fund affordable housing! Both passed!
  • We got involved with the proposed affordable housing project, 66 West Apartments!

Volunteers from our parish showed up faithfully week after week to pick up Surplus Food and deliver it to St. Patrick’s and to Caring and Sharing Hands! Freezing temperatures and knee deep snow did not stop them! Our monthly crew has been making it brighter for folks who are elderly or disabled by stopping by with a hot meal through our Meals on Wheels Ministry.  Loyalty would be a perfect description for our faithful volunteers who brought baked goods, (now fruit) and served meals at Holy Rosary for individuals and families struggling in poverty.

When we had Drives for VEAP, food filled our hallways, Celtic Center and front office! Last summer, my office looked like a small school supply store. Every wall was filled with beautiful backpacks, markers, notebooks and scissors! It was everything kids need to go back to school!

Your gifts to Social Justice have helped families stay in their apartments by providing emergency rent support, Cub Food Cards and groceries to people in crisis.

We have also learned that we can do more together! We did cross-ministry promotions for VEAP and tripled our previous collections. In total, we collected almost 3,000 pounds of food this year. In addition, you kept bringing in groceries for our on-going collection for Sharing & Caring Hands. And, we did two projects with OLG. We teamed up for the Women Who Build project and they came to our Gala!  Plus they gave us lovely Christmas Trees for our Gala!

And, we went to Coban! Our Youth Ministry Team and volunteers delivered 350 water units! Love and joy can be felt by anyone who hears about our passion for Coban!

We just wrapped up our, “Blessings for Babies” promotion. It happened, because of the kind, persistent reminder from one of the beloved  members of our parish, Geri. She kept asking me what we were doing for babies! We also reached out to our friend Fr. Jerry and raised funds for St. Mary’s School at Red Lake Indian Reservation. We continue to support pathways out of poverty by tutoring and raising money for kids in Minneapolis who attend Risen Christ School!

The Office of Social Justice extends our gratitude to all of you who generously share your time, talents and financial gifts with our ministries! I call it a, “chain reaction of goodness”… It begins with intention and moves into action. The Office of Social Justice will make a difference in the fight against poverty with your help!

When I taught eighth grade religious education here, I often told my classes that our world was broken, but the good news was that they were sent to heal it! We invite to you to be a part of our story! If you are already working in St. Patrick’s Social Justice Ministries, we thank you! If you would like to get involved, contact the Office of Social Justice at or call Maura Schnorbach at 952-767-0942.