Our St. Catherine of Siena-St. Lucy and St. Giles Parish is partnering with Ascension and St. Edmund Parish to form an organization that is called Migrant Ministry. Our goal is to work toward hosting migrants.
MIGRANT MINISTRY UPDATE – DECEMBER 3, 2023
As we enter the Advent season, I am struggling with this question – How can we enjoy this beautiful season knowing that our migrant sisters and brothers are living without shelter or enough food or warm clothes or heat or hot water? How can we have so many gifts and others have so little? How can we share?
This might be an opportunity. In addition to Shower days, the Catholic Parishes of Oak Park’s Migrant Ministry is also hosting and housing four families plus a fifth that is being hosted by a separate group. We would like to get one or two gifts for each person. Would you be willing to take a family or share with someone else? We are working on a wish list for each family. If so, please let me know at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here is a very short description of each family:
- Our first family is a very young mom and dad with a 2-year-old girl.
- The next is a family of five including mom and dad, a 12-year-old boy, 4-year-old girl and a 2-year-old girl.
- One group has found a home together which includes mom and dad, an 8-year-old girl and a 5-year-old-girl. Also sharing the home are three other adults.
- Our most recent arrival is also a very young mom and dad with a 4-year-old boy.
Would you consider sharing some gifts with one of these families? Or would you consider organizing the gift giving project? It would be a great help.
The most important needs are housing and jobs. We continue to look for apartments to house families. The families that we are hosting are doing well, and there is a continuing need for mentors to accompany these families. With the new Temporary Protective Status for asylum-seekers from Venezuela, we are trying to find ways to help them complete those applications.
If you are interested in volunteering for Shower Day, the accompaniment of the migrant families we have resettled into Oak Park, or if you know of an available home or apartment, please contact Margie Rudnik at email@example.com, or Celine Woznica at firstname.lastname@example.org.
ONLINE ITEMS DONATIONS – AMAZON WISH LIST
The Migrant Ministry is a joint effort of Oak Park-based faith centers and volunteer groups to assist recently arrived asylum seekers currently living in police stations, shelters, and churches. The Amazon Wish List linked below contains items in greatest demand by the migrants who are not used to cold weather and receive little assistance for their physical needs in the city-run shelters. The items listed are suggestions; you do not need to buy from Amazon.
DROP-OFF ITEMS DONATIONS
Only these items are needed: winter jackets, sweatpants especially for men and boys, leggings for women, hoodies, and layering items, socks, gloves, hats, blankets, suitcases, and sleeping bags. We continue to need new underwear for men, women, and children. For men boxer briefs in small and medium. For women underwear and sports bras in small and medium. For children underwear in all sizes, particularly for boys. We ask you please to stick to this list.
We will be receiving these donations on Mondays from 9 am to 12 Noon. Donations will be received at the Washington Boulevard entrance to St. Catherine-St. Lucy Church during those hours ONLY – WE ASK THAT YOU DO NOT DROP OFF DONATIONS OUTSIDE OF THESE HOURS.
If you would like to help by donating money toward the purchase of items needed, or if you would like to help defray expenses to provide showers, meals and clothing items for the migrants, you can donate online through the GiveCentral link below OR send donations to St. Catherine-St Lucy and St Giles Parish, 1025 Columbian Ave, Oak Park, IL 60302. Include a note that the donation is for the “Migrant Ministry”.
Thank you for your generous hearts!