Catholic Charities Christmas Collection


“Bringing HOPE to our Community”


Dear Friend, Aside from 2005, when Donna Hanson passed away after serving for 27 years as Catholic Charities’ beloved Director, 2020 has been the most difficult year in my 21-year tenure at Catholic Charities. A global pandemic, a historic unemployment rate, devastating wildfires, systemic racial injustices and a general blanket of division in our community have each contributed to an overarching sense of worry for us all. There is no other way to describe it—it has been a hard year. But it has been a hard year for all of us—our clients, our volunteers, our supporters and our staff. It has been a hard year for the entire Catholic community. The parishes in our Diocese have especially struggled to raise necessary funds during this trying time. Knowing this, Catholic Charities will not ask for or expect a presence in parishes to speak about or advertise the Christmas Collection. We know that without healthy parishes and a healthy Diocese there can be no healthy Catholic Charities, and we want to be mindful of that reality. While this has been a year filled with anxiety and uncertainty, it has also been a year when we have been able to see the best parts of ourselves and our community coming out during a crisis. Seeing that “best part” in the toughest of times is what is giving me hope. Indeed, I am still hopeful this Christmas season! When I reflect on the past nine months and how much has forever changed, I am also reminded of what has not changed. What has not changed is the kindness, compassion and resilience of our clients. What has not changed is the dedication of our volunteers, staff and community. What has not changed is Catholic Charities’ non-negotiable commitment to give hope to our community. It’s what we do. It’s what we must do. As part of that mission of hope, this past year we opened Jacklin Haven and Schweitzer Haven, two brand-new apartment buildings for 100 individuals experiencing chronic street homelessness. These are the eighth and ninth Haven buildings we have opened in just the past eight years, all paid for by the Internal Revenue Service and tax credits. That’s hope! When COVID-19 hit and we were forced to cut in half the number of people our shelters could serve, we opened five new

COVID-19 pop-up shelters in other buildings, in new facilities and even on the campus of Gonzaga Prep—all to ensure the homeless had a safe and socially distanced place to sleep. That’s hope! As COVID-19 cases grew, we worked with the Spokane Regional Health District and the Catholic Diocese of Spokane to turn the Immaculate Heart Retreat Center into an Isolation Center for COVID-19-positive individuals. More hope! The result of all this work has been that we have only had two total cases of COVID-19 in all of our shelters, and only one case in all 1,400 units of our Catholic Charities housing all of this time. That’s the power of hope! Through all of these efforts, we have drastically increased our services this year, helping individuals and families who have never before been Catholic Charities clients. Your support can help keep the lights and heat on in homes, provide substance abuse treatment to families who have experienced trauma, provide meals and shelter to homeless individuals and families, and give hope to seniors struggling with isolation. We are an organization focused on those most in need. It is our job to do this precious work, and we have a sacred obligation and duty to continue. Your gift this Christmas will help more women, children, families, seniors and individuals than ever before. We are grateful for your prayers and support this season. YOUR GIFT IS THEIR HOPE . Please prayerfully consider donating to the Catholic Charities Christmas Collection.

Merry Christmas and God Bless you,

Rob McCann President & CEO Catholic Charities Eastern Washington

The annual Christmas Collection is Catholic Charities’ largest fundraising initiative, helping to sustain and operate 16 programs that serve more than 60,000 people each year. We are humbled to serve all people in need regardless of race, ethnicity or religion throughout the Diocese of Spokane. All proceeds from the Catholic Charities Christmas Collection stay in Eastern Washington to serve local individuals and families. Catholic Charities does not receive funds from the Catholic Diocese of Spokane.

Please consider making a donation to the Catholic Charities Christmas Collection today.

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