Home Community Overview of the Global Solidarity Team & Catholic Relief Services

Overview of the Global Solidarity Team & Catholic Relief Services


The Global Solidarity Team (GST), under the Office of Social Ministries of the Diocese of San Jose, is comprised of individuals dedicated to increasing awareness of the importance of global solidarity among local parishes and schools. The GST initially started off as a team primarily focused on programming through Catholic Relief Services (CRS), however, it has recently expanded its capacity to also include representatives from Immersions, Catholic Charities (focusing on Refugees), CNEHT, the Catholic Green Initiative, and Justice For Immigrants.

The following people are members of the Global Solidarity Team:

  • Terry Jelley: Human Trafficking (CNEHT)
  • Jeremy Barousse & Fr. Jon Pedigo (Advocacy too): Justice for Immigrants
  • Susan Olsen: Environmental Justice (Catholic Green Initiative)
  • Claire Collins & Theresa Samuel Boko: Refugee Resettlement (Catholic Charities)
  • Sylvia Blanch: Administrative Assistant
  • Anne Maloney, Bill Perry, Brendan Cunning: Fair Trade
  • Judy Swazey: CRS Rice Bowl
  • Ken Preston: Catholic Relief Services (CRS)
  • Bob Malone: Immersions
  • Deacon Steve Herrera: CRS Global Fellow
  • Deacon Ruben Solorio: Director of Office of Social Ministries
  • Crystal Catalan: Global Solidarity Coordinator

This year, the Global Solidarity Team has been awarded a Capacity Building Grant from CRS, which will encourage collaboration and commitment to global solidarity among leaders and their respective ministries at parishes and schools. The purpose of this initiative is to strengthen and focus the partnership between CRS and the Office of Social Ministries, through the participation of parishes and schools. Through this initiative, we hope to make global solidarity, in the context of broader parish-based social ministry, deeper, widely available and more vibrant for all Catholics in the Diocese of San Jose.

For more information on the GST, contact Crystal Catalan at ccatalan@dsj.org.

Meet Your CRS Global Fellows in the Diocese of San Jose
CRS Global Fellows are priests and deacons who applied and received training to represent Catholic Relief Services in dioceses across the United States. Through firsthand experiences, these Global Fellows communicate to parishes, schools, and other communities, the importance of global solidarity and work of CRS in helping to end poverty around the world. At any time, Global Fellows may be requested to speak at liturgies, school assemblies, or deliver trainings at large community events.

The Diocese of San Jose is proud to have four CRS Global Fellows. Deacon Steve Herrera and Deacon Ron Hansen have been longstanding Global Fellows. New this year are: Deacon Rubén Solorio and Father Walter Suarez.

An Invitation…
Through the CRS Capacity Building Initiative, the Diocese of San Jose is excited to launch the Parish Ambassador Corps, inviting dedicated leaders to serve as Parish Ambassadors. These Parish Ambassadors will be serving in a special leadership role and will have the unique opportunity to receive leadership training from CRS representatives, focusing on global solidarity through such efforts as the CRS Rice Bowl experience, Fair Trade initiatives, and legislative advocacy. The first training will be led by Chris West, Director of Partnership, Training & Engagement, from CRS Headquarters and will take place on Saturday, October 29 at the Chancery. If you are interested in representing your parish or school, please contact Crystal Catalan at ccatalan@dsj.org.