Help Catholic Charities by Joining ‘A Movable Feast’
By Patrick Winn
On Oct. 24, just over a month from now, we will initiate a new fundraiser for Catholic Charities. The title of the event is “A Movable Feast” because we want to be inclusive of all parts of the Rockford Diocese with our services and priorities. 
 
Although the first celebration will occur in Rockford, we look forward to taking our message of service and advocacy to all parts of the diocese. 
 
The headliner for the inaugural event is Wayne Messmer, the voice of the National Anthem and “God Bless America” at Chicago’s major sporting events. Messmer is a Fourth Degree Knight of Columbus, a faithful Catholic, and frequent emcee of the annual men’s conference held in the Rockford Diocese. 
 
He will present his one-person, one-act dramatization of the mission of St. Damien of Molokai. Please see some additional information on page 6 of this issue, and watch for announcements in various parish bulletins and in The Observer.
 
Catholic Charities needs to raise funds as many humanitarian organizations do. During the Fiscal Year 2018–19, Catholic Charities provided the following services:
 
– Meals and clothing (St. Elizabeth Catholic Community Center and Refugee Resettlement);
 
– Pre-school, after-school, and summer camp;
 
– Counseling, community and school;
 
– Long-Term Care Ombudsman Visits with Elderly and Disabled;
 
–  Refugee resettlement;
 
– Emergency assistance and referrals;
 
– Employment assistance and placement;
 
– Immigration services;
 
– Advocacy concerning human trafficking and domestic violence;
 
– Adolescent Outreach and Teen Parenting Counseling;
 
– Adoption records searches.
 
We are being aggressive with our pricing so we can be aggressive with our services. Thus, we have sought out and been graced with some generous sponsorships. 
 
But we also have a limited number of tickets available for $200 each. That gets a pre-dinner reception, dinner, Wayne Messmer’s performance, and dessert. We also have a few tickets priced at $100 for just the performance. Pricey, yes. But, as MasterCard would say, “Priceless.” 
 
As the host deanery, 50% of our net proceeds will go to the Rockford Deanery of 19 parishes, and 50% will be spread across our services in the other six deaneries. 
 
Next year we plan to hold our event in Aurora, so 50% will stay in that deanery. Then we will move to the western part of the diocese with the same split. 
 
Our diocese is the size of the state of Connecticut and covers 11 counties. Our services and our advocacy must extend, as our friends at The Observer say, “from the Fox River to the Mississippi.”
 
Please join us. And please support our sponsors. They have committed to us because they are convinced of the value of our work and the dedication that comes from over 80 years of diocesan service.
 
We know the price is above the usual range, but we also know that our services are needed throughout the diocese. Please consider being a part of the solutions that Catholic Charities can lead in our communities. 
 
We are good stewards with your money, with overhead costs at 8% of donations. Our clients get a lot of bang for the buck.
 
Father Damien committed his life to those who were otherwise abandoned. Please come celebrate his commitment and dedication with Wayne Messmer by helping us serve others who are abandoned and in need of the kindness of modern Good Samaritans.
 
On behalf of our current and new clients, our staff and our volunteers, thank you for letting us be the Good Samaritans in hundreds of people’s lives across the Diocese of Rockford.