Catholic Sentinel photo by Gerry Lewin
Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha Church in Warm Springs.
Catholic Sentinel photo by Gerry Lewin
Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha Church in Warm Springs.
The collection to help support Catholic Home Missions will be taken in the parishes of the Archdiocese of Portland the weekend of April 26-27. The Catholic Home Missions Appeal supports dioceses in the United States and its territories, that do not have sufficient resources to provide basic pastoral ministry to their population.  Struggling dioceses are found in all areas of the U. S.  They are in Appalachia, the Southwest, U. S. Island territories in the Caribbean and in the Pacific, and here in the Pacific Northwest.

In the Northwest the three dioceses in Alaska, two in Montana, the Boise Diocese, two in Washington and the Diocese of Baker here in Oregon are all considered Home Mission dioceses.  Home mission dioceses often struggle with priest shortages, poverty, isolation and sometimes religious hostility.percent
 
The Home Missions Appeal provides grants to dioceses, which provide resources for seminarian education, religious education, lay ministry training, Hispanic ministry, and pastoral outreach to the poor. The Diocese of Jackson in Mississippi has the highest number of families living below the poverty level in the U.S. on a per capita basis.  The Home Missions Appeal provides a grant to help cover the cost of educating seminarians from the Diocese of Jackson.  In the Diocese of Kalamazoo, Michigan, the Home Missions Appeal helps to support the diocese’s migrant ministry program.  The ministry coordinates efforts to reach out to migrant workers and their families, and serve their spiritual needs.
 
What does your donation fund?  In 2012, the Catholic Home Missions Appeal funds were distributed: 25 percent for diocesan and parish assistance, 26.5 percent to priestly and religious vocations, 27.2 percent to support faith formation, 1.9 percent to support life and dignity of the human person, 3.4 percent to strengthen marriage and family life and 16 percent to assist cultural diversity.
 
Last year Catholics in western Oregon contributed more than $75,500 in support of the Catholic Home Missions Appeal.  Parishioners are encouraged to be generous in their support this year to help strengthen the Church at home.