"I Was Thirsty, and You Gave me Drink"
June's rising temperatures made it logical to focus on those who are physically thirsty, following Jesus's words in the Gospel of Matthew, "I was thirsty, and you gave me drink" (Mt. 25:35).
During the second month of a seven-month "Corporal Works of Mercy" Challenge for the Jubilee Year of Mercy, Catholic Charities invited Middle Tennesseans to "give drink to the thirsty" through a bottled water (and healthy snack) drive for our Hope Counseling Program, which offers trauma-focused groups and individual counseling for children ages 5-18.
The response was phenomenal! Individuals and members of parishes across the diocese participated, including St. Ignatius of Antioch's Vacation Bible School program, Cathedral's Totus Tuus program, a St. Stephen's women's group, and participants from St. Henry's "Mercy at Home" Lenten small group initiative.
By the time we stopped counting, Catholic Charities received 1,394 bottles of water and juice boxes and 933 healthy snack packs! Given that donations continued to arrive after we stopped counting, the Hope program easily received more than 2500 donated snack items (food & drink) total. As would be expected, these snacks have been well-received by the children participating in the year-round program that continues even when school lets out for the summer.
In addition to providing snacks, our trained counselors do an excellent job of creating a fun atmosphere as they work with children who have been affected by violent crimes, some of which include homicide, domestic violence, and assault.
Although this specific donation drive is over, our thirst for community support is never quenched! There is always a need for healthy snack and drink donations year-round to support the Hope Program.
To learn more about how you can provide ongoing support for Hope Counseling Program children, call 615-760-1019 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.