homeless

Compassion guides Father Dempsey’s Charities

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Charlie Bean has lived at St. Dempsey's Charities since 2012. He describes being "down and out" when he first came, a result of living on the streets of St. Louis.

"I was strung out, stressed out and didn't know if I was going to make it to the next day," he said. He had a rough life — addicted to heroin, he stole to support himself and went to prison, then returned on a parole violation. In 2006 he came out of prison, got a job and stayed out of trouble but his life was unstable.

Students get (and share) the message

Alannah Coady, from St. Francis of Assisi School, created a card of hope for a homeless person during a service project with other Catholic schools on Feb. 27. Eighth-graders from Region 5 Catholic schools gathered at St. Simon the Apostle to celebrate Mass with Bishop Mark Rivituso. After Mass, they did a service project for St. Patrick Center.

His penmanship wasn't perfect, but St. Mark School eighth-grader Christian Newcombe's message was on target — "Never lose hope."

Christian wrote the message on one of the cards accompanying 200 gift bags of hygiene products to be donated to clients of St. Patrick Center, a Catholic Charities of St. Louis agency serving people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.

Minneapolis Parish throws party for homeless displaced by Super Bowl

Larry Ligocki, a volunteer at St. Olaf Church in Minneapolis, talked with a homeless guest at a Super Bowl party Feb. 4. A church-run shelter near U.S. Bank Stadium, the site of the Super Bowl, was temporarily moved to St. Olaf so that guests could be outside of a secure area surrounding the stadium.

MINNEAPOLIS — A woman exclaimed, "Right there, that's what I thought!" as she watched Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Nick Foles throw the first touchdown of the Super Bowl Feb. 4.

Watching the game on a TV at St. Olaf Church in downtown Minneapolis, she cheered all the more when the Eagles were on defense, exclaiming "don't let them get a touchdown" as they held the New England Patriots to a field goal on their first drive.

Later, she yelled, "Yes," as the Eagles broke up another pass by Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. The Eagles went on to beat the Patriots 41-33.

COLD EMERGENCY: Catholics rush to respond as freezing temperatures increase risk to homeless

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Under a tall railroad bridge in St. Charles County, a couple revealed a small tent stuffed nearly full with blankets. It's been their home for the past five months, but life in a tent has become unbearable in the recent freezing temperatures.

They have enough money for one more night at a hotel, but after that — well, they aren't sure.

"You just have to bundle up," the man said as he looked through a box of snack items in the back of a van operated by Sts. Joachim and Ann Care Service's Street Outreach team. The ministry visited the area, helping people find a warm place to stay.

Yes, there is Room at the Inn

Jeremy Anderson, left, Chasidy Ellis and their one-year-old son, Chance Anderson, prepared to sleep Dec. 21 at Christ the King Church in University City. The church serves as a night site for Room at the Inn, a ministry that provides temporary emergency shelter for homeless women and families. Room at the Inn uses space in churches, synagogues and mosques to house people.

A few days before Christmas, Jeremy Anderson sat in the basement of Christ the King Church in University City with his girlfriend and one-year-old son as they ate a barbecue dinner.

It was not exactly where they'd hoped to be, but the food was warm and the conversation was good. They were grateful to have found Room at the Inn.

Anderson had been working in security at a hotel in Las Vegas last year. A mass shooting at a concert near the Mandalay Bay hotel left him stressed. His employer gave him time off work, but it was just too much.

Catholic Campaign for Human Development grows success

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Broccoli, beets, turnips, sprouts, spinach, cauliflower and more fill the bins at City Greens Market's bright and colorful storefront on Manchester Avenue in St. Louis.

With a $6,300 grant from the Catholic Campaign for Human Development, several families will grow food to sell at the nonprofit market. Also, herbs locally grown are coveted by restaurants which pay top-dollar.

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