Friday, January 22, 2010

More Haiti Info

A collaboration between a group of medical professionals, former Marines and former soldiers working in small teams forms Team Rubicon. Check out their very interesting blog. Lots of up-to-the-minute info. They could use lots of prayers along with donations.

(edited 01/25/10 to correct info)

Friday, January 15, 2010

More Haiti aid options

Catholic Relief Services:

CRS also has a page dedicated to helping young people understand and help with disasters, which includes prayer services and lesson plans and can be found here.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Haiti earthquake relief

Please consider donating to one of the many reputable agencies asking for help for the earthquake vitims in Haiti.

One such agency is Food For the Poor , and you can donate here. I have donated regularly to FFP for over 10 years and they are highly rated by Charity Navigator.

You can also donate through many other agencies, especially those listed here  on Charity Navigator. Also, please read their articles on how to safely donate in times of crisis fundraising.

Please remember to pray for those who have died in the quake, those who are injured, those who are missing and those who are searching for friends and loved ones. Also pray for the rescue workers, that they may have the physical, emotional and spiritual strength to complete their task. May God bless all of them.

Food For the Poor main page:
FFP donation page:
FFP Haiti update page:
Charity Navigator main page:
Charity Navigator Haiti relief page:

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Walking with the poor

In my last post I introduced CFCA and their mission to help the poor. Today I will introduce you to their newest project, Walk2gether.

Walk2gether is an 8,000 mile walk from Guatemala to Chile by CFCA's founder, 73 year old Bob Hentzen to join in solidarity with the poor and to bring attention to their plight. The walk began on Dec 29, 2009 and is scheduled to continue for 16 months. Bob and his companions will walk 20-25 miler per day, starting out at 3am on most days to avoid the heat. In 1996, at the age of 60, Bob walked 4,000 miles from Kansas City to Guatemala. Why does he do it? According to the Walk2gether website: "By walking with them, we are saying, 'You are not alone,'" Hentzen said. "We are listening to you and learning from you."

The poor walk everwhere, and by walking with them, Bob shows that he is helping them by becoming one of them, just as Jesus helped us by becoming one of us. Having met Bob on several trips to Guatemala, I think he would not be comfortable being compared to Jesus, but he is Jesus to those he helps, as we all should be. Bob and the CFCA staff live the Gospel daily, and they live it because they truly love others. They are an inspiration to all of us.

Visit the Walk2gether site to read Bob's blog and watch great videos of the walk and of the people Bob meets along the way, especially the children, and share the site with your friends. Visit their youth site if you have teens or work with youth as a teacher, a catechist or in youth ministry. This site is especislly geared towards teaching teens about the poor.

Please visit CFCA's website and consider sponsoring a child in Central America, South America, Africa or Asia. I sponsor two boys in Guatemala, and I have learned so much from them and their families. They truly love everyone and have complete trust in God (two things I continue to struggle with daily!).

You may also enjoy CFCA's YouTube and vimeo channels as much as I do.

By the way, what does all this have to do with Catholicism? Everything!

Friday, January 1, 2010

New Year's Day

Today is New Year's Day, Jan 1, 2010. It is the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God and on this day the church also celebrates world day of peace. Jesus is Prince of Peace, and Mary, therefore, is mother of peace. We pray for peace in our lives, our families, our workplaces, our country and in the world.

But we need more than prayers for peace to happen. We need action. One organization working towards peace is the Christian Foundation for Children and Aging (CFCA). This organization connects sponsors in the US with children and aging adults in 24 countries. Through sponsorship, children are given the chance to attend school, a chance they most likely would not have otherwise. The children, their families, and the sponsored aging are also given food, healthcare, spiritual support, and an opportunity to work, thus giving them the ability to help themselves and rise above their poverty.

The poor are not poor because they want to be poor. They are poor due to situations beyond their control. CFCA gives the poor the means to control their own lives, and gives them the hope and dignity due all people. Following the Gospel message, CFCA works in the Americas, the Carribean, Africa and Asia, and has over 300,000 sponsored children and adults.  But according to their latest newsletter, Sacred Ground, there are over 26,000 children and aging still waiting for sponsors. There are also many young adults in need of short term sponsorships to complete their education.

I sponsor two children in Guatemala through CFCA. I have visited them several times and met their families. The faith, hope and love found in these families for everyone they meet preaches the Gospel daily by their actions. Guatemala has been a war torn country for many years, as have many of the countries CFCA works in. On this day of world peace, let us pray for them and all the poor of the world.

On this feast of Mary, Mother of God, please think about sponsoring a child, youth or elderly person. The Holy Family was poor. We were not there to help them, but we can help others today. Jesus told us that the poor would be with us always. They are not with us to stay poor, they are with us so that we can be Jesus to them and help them rise above their poverty.

For more information on CFCA, the countries they work in, and the joys of sponsorship, visit their websites at or .

Next: more CFCA news