catholic charities

Go To Bat for Kids provides unforgettable memories for kids

Carlos Williams threw out the first pitch at the St. Louis Cardinals’ game on April 20. Carlos had been selected through Catholic Charities of St. Louis’ Go to Bat for Kids campaign.

With three curved fingers hooked on top, and a thumb positioned underneath, Carlos Williams demonstrated how he held the baseball for his first-ever major-league pitch.

The 7-year-old threw the first pitch at the St. Louis Cardinals game April 20 as part of Catholic Charities of St. Louis' Go to Bat for Kids campaign.

Later, Carlos showed off his newly prized possession, the ball signed by Cardinals pitcher Matt Bowman.

"That's how he told me to throw it," Carlos said of his expert advice. "And I was the only one that got to throw that ball."

Catholic agencies address poverty issues, public policy

A forum last month gave Catholics a chance to voice public policy concerns and ideas to legislators ahead of the state legislative session, which convened Jan. 3. The Dec. 11 event in St. Charles County was a collaboration by Catholic Charities and the Society of St. Vincent de Paul "to put low-income people in the front of legislators' minds as they go into the session," according to Tamara Kenny, director of advocacy and community engagement at Catholic Charities.

Once ‘on knees and knuckles,’ now back on her feet

Wade Chatfield, right, a member advisor for Catholic Charities of St. Louis’ Pathways to Progress program, helped Loddie Gillespie with her resume and getting her professional profile established on LinkedIn. With the help of Chatfield and Pathways to Progress, Gillespie is finding herself back on track.

Loddie Gillespie describes herself as always curious, always on the go. The word quit is not in her vocabulary.

As a mother, she's used to giving to others. But after facing several serious life hurdles, Gillespie found herself asking others for help.

Board member helps agency that aided him at his birth, adoption

Fifty years ago, Marty Tobben's biological mother placed him for adoption with Villa Maria, then an agency of Catholic Charities. He grew up in a loving household with his adoptive parents, Bob and Mary Tobben of Washington and two siblings.

Now he's giving back to Catholic Charities as a board member of Good Shepherd Children and Family Services, which connects children with families and keeps families connected through foster care, expectant parent support, adoption and maternity shelter. Good Shepherd includes the functions of the former Villa Maria maternity program.

Catholic groups mobilizing to help in Hurricane Harvey's aftermath

Residents wade through floodwaters from Tropical Storm Harvey Aug. 28 in Beaumont Place, Texas. (CNS photo/Jonathan Bachman, Reuters) See

Editor's note: Updated on Aug. 29 with information about special collection in Archdiocese of St. Louis Sept. 2-3 and Sept. 9-10.

Texas parishioners shocked by devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey

Tim Freiberg walked through debris of his destroyed garage Aug. 26 after Hurricane Harvey struck Rockport, Texas. Floodwaters rose as high as 20 feet in some areas after record-breaking rainfall of as much as 28 inches in 24 hours fell in Texas.

HOUSTON -- With floodwater as high as 20 feet from swelling bayous and waterways, thousands of homes in the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston flooded as Tropical Storm Harvey continued to batter southeast Texas Aug. 28.

Bishops from dioceses along the mid-Texas Gulf Coast, including Victoria and Galveston-Houston, granted dispensations from regular Mass Sunday obligations Aug. 27.

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