You may have heard the story of how in the year 258 A.D. in Rome the Emperor Valerian persecuted the young and growing Christian community. After executing Pope Sixtus II, the Prefect of Rome wanted the treasure that he thought the Parish had and so ordered a deacon named Lawrence to bring him the treasures of the Parish or face torture and death. Lawrence asked for three days to gather the treasure. Using those days he quickly distributed the wealth of the Parish to the poor. After three days, Lawrence brought forth a group of poor, blind and disabled people and said – here is the true treasure of the Parish which is greater than that of the emperor. Of course Saint Lawrence was then tortured and executed, becoming a martyr for the Parish.
Today, even here in Silicon Valley the Parish’s treasure remains the same – the outcast, the rejected: the hungry and lonely senior, the child struggling to read, the family desperately seeking affordable housing, the former inmate trying to find work, the refugee foster youth hoping for a safe home, the immigrant parent trying to get right with the law, the youth seeking safety from gangs, the person with physical and mental illness seeking healing. At Catholic Charities, we are honored to encounter these treasured human beings every day, and are grateful for the support of so many of our donors in our quest to alleviate, prevent and reduce poverty here in the valley.
This year, we urgently need help caring for those in poverty more than ever. Many of our funders require us to raise matching donations to qualify for funding, or even with our very low overhead rate, grants might not pay for the full cost of operations to provide services. For the programs for which we do charge fees, we use a sliding scale based on the individual’s ability to pay, necessitating finding scholarship funds to help our lower income clients.
I urge you to please be generous and consider an increased gift this year during our Catholic Charities Annual Appeal this May. However you choose to give to Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County, know that we deeply appreciate your sharing a portion of your treasure with our treasured ones.
Thank you and God bless you.
Visit www.CatholicCharitiesSCC.org for more information.