Catholics for Life
This Prolife Group focuses on promoting respect for life from conception to natural death. This is done through prayer, bulletin articles on various life issues and legislation, informative displays in the narthex, the Spiritual Adoption program, honoring parents on Mother’s day and Father’s day and assisting prolife crisis pregnancy centers through the Baby Bottles for Life collection. Members who wish to become more directly involved in assisting a woman in a crisis pregnancy may choose to participate in the Project Gabriel program. Through this program volunteers assist a woman in need by being someone to talk to, pray with, help with rides to the doctor, etc. The parish community may also help with her material needs, such as diapers, formula, clothing,etc
During Advent each year, the St. Walter Parish family sponsors and embraces the Giving Tree Project. The project begins after Thanksgiving Mass and runs the first few Sundays of Advent. The Giving Tree supports many local, Diocesan and further outreach projects. Each year over a thousand brightly decorated ornament tags with gift suggestions are chosen by our parish family and are returned as carefully wrapped gifts to bring the warmth of Christmas to their recipients.
This project takes many helping hands and reaches many needy people. It has been a most meaningful Advent Project at St. Walter Parish over the years.
The Mountaintop Schools Outreach Ministry is a team of people working from August to December to organize an appeal to the Parishioners to fund the Catholic Education of 370 students of the Diocese of Digos in the Philippines.
There are two schools; San Jose Cabasagan and St. Joseph Tamlang. They are on the mountaintop and the children walk many hours to reach the schools. The teachers leave their families in the cities and live in the mountaintop community with the families of their students. The families of the children are poor farmers of land that is difficult to farm and often the children are hungry. It costs $80.00 per year per child to fund these schools.
This appeal takes place in the month of November. Father Mario visits these schools every other year when he is in the Philippines in January. This appeal pays for the teacher’s salaries, the tuition of the children, books and supplies, as well as uniforms, flipflops and ponchos for the children to wear in the rainy season. These schools have become community centers for the families as well, offering classes in health, agriculture and community events.
P.A.D.S. Public Action to Deliver Shelter
The people of St. Walter Parish take seriously their Christian mission to aid the homeless. St. Walter parishioners, as well as volunteers from St. Isidore Parish, St. Matthew Parish and the Roselle United Methodist Church provide overnight shelter, warm nourishing meals and other comfort amenities for the homeless people in this area year round. Volunteers provide setup, meals and their onsite presence. For more information about P.A.D.S. please see www.dupagepads.org.
St. Vincent DePaul
The Society of St Vincent DePaul is an international Catholic lay organization that leads its members to grow spiritually together by offering person-to-person service to the needy and suffering in their community. Founded in 1833 by Bl. Frederic Ozanam, the Society attempts to practice what Christianity preaches: that our blessings are to be shared with our brothers and sisters in need. Membership involves two regular meetings per month, along with periodic team outreach visits to directly assess the requirements and then provide assistance to the impoverished within our parish boundaries.
St. Walter Prison Ministry makes visits to Stateville in Joliet four times a year in cooperation with the Way of the Cross Ministry in Joliet. Magazines and small paperback literature are welcome as a donation and are given away to the inmates by our volunteers who also pray over the inmates when it is received.
St. Walter Parish belongs to the Ministerium Transitional Housing Program, a non-denominational group of local churches, whose purpose is to assist a family who is either homeless or in danger of becoming homeless to reach self-sufficiency.
This is accomplished by helping the family save enough money to obtain affordable permanent housing. The member churches contribute financial resources, supporting the family during the transition period and provide mentors to work in conjunction with Catholic Charities to give support and guidance to the Guest.
Volunteers go through a mentor training class to prepare them for this support role. Mentors help the Guest to get settled in their new home and then meet with the Guest and family once a week during the transition period, which can last from a few months to a year or more, depending upon the circumstances. Mentors assist the Guest in establishing a budget, setting short and long term goals for self-sufficiency and dealing with the myriad of state and local assistance departments. The requirement to become a part of this ministry is simple; a willingness to listen and the wisdom to be non-judgmental.
Care Packages for Soldiers
St. Walter Parishioners take part in this simple project as an outreach to our soldiers around the world. Bill Wolff, one of our parishioners, and his family have been preparing these care packages for the soldiers and the labels that are attached for many years. They deliver them to our narthex twice a year asking for our help. All we have to do is pick up a package and bring it to the post office to pay for the postage.