Social Concerns


In Deus Caritas Est, Pope Benedict XVI describes the “unbreakable bond between love of God and love of neighbor” (no. 16). The experience of God’s love, he says, should move us to love our neighbors, in whom God is present. But what should this loving action look like? The Catholic tradition recognizes two distinct, but complementary, ways we can respond to the Gospel call to put love in action: social justice (addressing systemic, root causes of problems that affect many people) and charitable works (short-term, emergency assistance for individuals).
 
St. Mary's offers many different programs and organizations to enable all parishioners to act for more social justice and do services.
 
Activities

  • Sunday for the Poor Drives
The first Sunday of each month at St. Mary's is designated Sunday For the Poor with a drive to help restocking the St. Vincent de Paul Society food pantry.

Sunday for the Poor toiletry drive on May 3 & 24
Pope Francis calls us to care for the poor, the marginalized, and all those in need through his words and actions. You can help feeding the hungry in Bryan/College Station by bringing box dinners (hamburger/tuna helper/ meal in box), cans of stew, pork & beans, chili or meat (spam, ham, meatballs) or tuna, and cans of pasta with meat to the food drive at St. Mary’s next weekend (Sat May 3 & Sun Sept 1) for the St. Vincent de Paul Society food pantry.  Donations can be put in the carts at the back of the church. Thank you for helping our community!
 
  • Social Ministries Outreach Collections
The Social Ministries Outreach Collections are taken up monthly, usually on the 4th Sunday of the month, with the main collection. If you wish to donate for the collection, envelops are available at the poster and can be put in the main collection baskets. The Social Ministries Outreach Collections help support the local outreach efforts of the St. Vincent de Paul Society, Good Samaritan Gabriel Project Life Center, Brazos Valley Coalition for Life, Habitat for Humanity, as well as special needs brought to the attention of the parish.
Monetary donations to the Poor Box located along the right side wall of the entrance of the church contribute to support the St. Vincent de Paul Society.
  St. Mary's organizes a few day-long out-of-town service experiences during the fall and spring semester, as well as a couple week-long mission experiences during Spring Break.
  The 4th annual Social Justice Week is scheduled for March 22 to 30, 2014. This is a week during Lent with a number of  activities to provide an opportunity to all St. Mary's parishioners to deepen their knowledge of Catholic Social Teaching and raise awareness on some social justice issues.
  A fun way to join in the spirit of giving and to show the poor in our community that we really do care about them. The 5K Run/Walk is organized by St. Mary’s Advocates for Christ Today (ACT) group and all proceeds go directly to the St. Vincent de Paul Society. The event is scheduled for March 22, 2014.
 
  • Service Fair

St. Mary's Service Fair is taking place in the fall (Tuesday September 10, 2013,  from 4:30 to 7:30 PM )in the student lounge. This is an opportunity for students to visit with representatives from different organizations offering long-term volunteer opportunities (from a few weeks to a couple of years) as well as representatives  from local non-profit offering a diversity of volunteer opportunities, and gather information materials on display.

 
 
Organizations:
  • ACT: Advocates for Christ Today
  • SMAPL: St. Mary's Aggies Promoting Life
  • Jail Ministry: offering Catholic services on Sunday morning to the Sandy Point minimum security jail in Bryan.
  • St. Vincent de Paul Society: providing people of the community in need with  emergency financial assistance, food and clothing.
  • Ministry to the Sick: bringing spiritual and healing comfort to parishioners who are sick or home-bound
 
Services opportunities  
Social Concerns resources
St. Mary’s social justice newsletter is published as a full page insert in the Sunday parish bulletin usually on the 3rd Sunday of the month. Each month Matthew 25 brings a social justice issue viewed from the perspective of the Catholic Social Teaching, helping us to get informed, reflect and act.
 
During the summer  the Conversations about Contemporary Concerns offer the opportunity to all interested to learn together about a different topic each week through a short presentation followed by a discussion.
 
 A couple of weeks from June 21 to July 4 with different activities to defend Religious Freedom.

 

For more information on any of the activities, programs and organizations under Social Concerns, contact Clotilde, St.Mary's Director of Social Ministries.

Calendar (Next 10 upcoming events)
  • May 3-4, 2014
    Helping the St. Vincent de Paul Society food pantry provides groceries for people in need of food assistance.
  • May 4, 2014
    9:00 AM - 12:00 PM
    Come enjoy a cup of Fair Trade coffee and meet other parishioners after the 8am and 10 am Sunday masses. Fair Trade coffee and chocolate will also be available for sale.
  • Jun 1, 2014
    11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
    Come enjoy a cup of Fair Trade coffee and meet other parishioners after the 10 am Sunday mass. Fair Trade coffee and chocolate will also be available for sale.
  • Jul 6, 2014
    11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
    Come enjoy a cup of Fair Trade coffee and meet other parishioners after the 10 am Sunday mass. Fair Trade coffee and chocolate will also be available for sale.
  • Aug 3, 2014
    11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
    Come enjoy a cup of Fair Trade coffee and meet other parishioners after the 10 am Sunday mass. Fair Trade coffee and chocolate will also be available for sale.