Services and Efforts
With our values focused on growing in holiness, social justice and serving those in our community, our conference has developed many ways to forge ahead, put our values into practice and meet the needs of those who are most vulnerable. Below are the many ways the Society of St. Vincent de Paul is taking action.
Twenty-five years ago, a small group of parishioners at Holy Family Catholic Church saw a need to provide food to the less fortunate. They were following Christ’s command to “feed the hungry”. They delivered food from the back of a truck to those in need, made Home Visits and set the foundation for what would become St. Vincent de Paul, Holy Family Conference.
Today the Food Pantry is multifaceted, and our primary focus is providing nutritious fresh, frozen and packaged food to over 12,000 guests, equal to 100,000 meals, annually. Through the generosity of Holy Family parish, we receive food donations and are recipients of the “Souper Bowl of Caring”. These donations help supplement the discounted food we purchase from Second Harvest.
However, we are more than just a food pantry. Our guests are provided counseling and access to information about social service organizations that are available in our community. Most importantly through friendship and fellowship, Vincentians help lift some of the burden of those we serve.
It all began with a home visit. Our Vincentian charism began when St. Vincent de Paul made a home visit in Chatillon in 1617. The spirituality of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul begins and lives in the home visit.
As we continue with our Vincentian charism into the present time of our Home Visits, we are blessed with profound grace to be able to continue to serve our guests with great gentleness and respect, bringing God’s love to every home. In home visits, we bring person-to-person relationships, promoting the dignity and well-being of every individual. We always strive to bring Jesus’ love to every brother or sister we visit. Contact us if you or someone you know would like to be added to our visitation list.
Jesus showed us how to love unconditionally, so much that he was willing to die on a cross to save us. On Easter, we celebrate Jesus’ resurrection, the day the scriptures were fulfilled, giving birth to our Church and teaching us the true meaning of love and sacrifice.
In an effort to provide these important lessons of love, sacrifice and the meaning of Easter, we prepare Easter baskets for children between the ages of 3-9 that contain age appropriate content about the meaning of Easter. We also include candy treats and small toys in these baskets. They are distributed in the weeks before Easter.
Soles 4 Kids
“Soles 4 Kids” is a Back to School program for pre-school and kindergarten children attending the Head Start Schools. The program started as Shoe Harvest by Bobbie and Joe Nuhfer and was adopted by SVDP when Bobbie retired. Through the generosity of Holy Family parishioners, over 40,000 pairs of shoes have been donated over 22 years. Now, SVDP collects and distributes them to these less fortunate children.
You can help! We are sustained by cash donations and support from people with big hearts and like minds. Please remember to pick a shoe size from our shoe tree this fall and help us help little children.
Annually our SVdP conference distributes approximately 300 boxes of food to families in need to provide them a traditional Thanksgiving meal including stuffing, potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce, vegetables, soups, dessert items and treats. They are also given a gift card to Publix so they are able to purchase a turkey and sundry items.
Most of the items in the boxes are donated by our parishioners and the students in our school.
Jesse Tree – Toy Drive
The Tree of Jesse is a depiction in art of the ancestors of Christ, which rises from the shoot of Jesse, the father of King David, and is the original use of the family tree as a schematic representation of genealogy.
Our Jesse Tree is a Christmas tree placed in the narthex of the church with paper angels that list the toy wishes of children up to the age of 11. Our wonderful Holy Family parishioners select an angel and purchase gifts that are given to the children for Christmas.
Fundraising and Other Events
As the needs in our community continue to grow, so does our need to create and develop events, drives and fundraisers. Our organization holds several events throughout the year including:
- Friends of the Poor Walk/Run
- Souper Bowl
- Lend a Hand, Win a Grand
It is a great way for members of our community to get involved and support each worthy cause.