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Being Christ to others and putting faith into action

Catholic Charities and Communities needs your help

In September of last year, the Diocese of Birmingham began its annual Catholic Charities and Communities appeal. The theme chosen, inspired by Bishop Raica’s words, was “being Christ to others.” The words were simple, yet the call was one that carried much weight.

At the beginning of the appeal, in a letter to the faithful of the diocese, the bishop wrote, “I encourage you to do all you can to share Christ within you to all in our diocese and beyond. Your pledge, your gifts, and your prayers for our success will impact people in your own community, in your own parish, and within your own family.”

Indeed, many have come forward to heed Bishop Raica’s call: the graces of which will have an immense impact on those in need within the diocese.

To date, however, the appeal’s goal of $4,673,300 has not been reached. On the Solemnity of St. Joseph, realizing that his pastoral mission could not be wholly realized, the bishop reached out again to the faithful. In the letter, Bishop Raica reiterated the appeal’s theme, highlighting the appeal as an opportunity for all in the diocese to fulfill their baptismal call to put faith into action. He asked, “Will you partner with me through your financial resources to help make the Kingdom of God present and vibrant here in the Diocese of Birmingham?”

Through a partnership with the bishop and his mission, Centers of Concern and Catholic Family Services will be able to help sustain individuals in moments of need; Education, Faith Formation, and Youth Ministry will be able to provide for the formation of minds and hearts in our parish communities; Hispanic and Black Ministries will lead the way incorporating the faithful more and more into one family where we are truly brothers and sisters all; and the Vocations Office will have the resources to support the formation of seminarians and candidates for the diaconate.

Supporting Bishop Raica’s call for help, the diocesan Director for Development, Allen McClendon, noted, “As needs and ministries grow, this campaign must grow as well, and that will take all of us working together, diligently and deliberately.” Currently, 11 parishes out of the 68 within the diocese have met their goal, and average participation across the diocese hovers at 10.5 percent.

Considering all that is at stake, the bishop noted, “Being Christ to others is not just a nice saying. It is more!” Undoubtedly, it is much more, for as the bishop continued: “I have made my own pledge to this campaign because I believe in the mission of Catholic Charities. I have seen its merits and benefits firsthand wherever I visit across our beloved diocese. … No matter how large or small your pledge to this campaign is, the more involvement we have, the greater the ability Catholic Charities has to fulfill its legendary mission throughout the Diocese of Birmingham.”

Please consider joining the bishop in supporting his mission and the mission of Catholic Charities and Communities. For more information, please visit