GREEN BAY — Summer vacation season might not seem the time to think about Lent and Easter, but the fruits of springtime have grown into good works, thanks to readers of The Compass.
Since 1993, The Compass has run an annual Wish List in which some of the local organizations that help the poor, elderly, sick and disadvantaged around the diocese have been able to share requests to help their ministry. Over these 23 years, 377 group requests have been placed through the Wish List. At least half the requests have been filled — at least in part — each year. This is again the case this year, with 50 percent of the groups receiving at least part of what they asked for in the wish list.
For example, in this year when Pope Francis released his encyclical on the environment, Laudato Si’, Casa ALBA Melanie, the Hispanic Resource Center for the greater Green Bay area, requested funds to help them with the energy responsibilities in their building. Sr. Melanie Maczka, a member of the Society of Sisters for the Church, is director and said they received “a donation of $500 to be used for upgrading. We are in the process of having a person come advise us,” but believes it may be used for an efficient thermostat.
The Bridge-Between retreat center in rural Denmark received donations of postage stamps and $100 to help with their working farm and organic garden. The funds will go toward reroofing their 1890 Belgian barn or replacing the 1988 pick-up that hauls feed for the farm animals.
Langlade Hospital Adult Day Care in Antigo received the set of wood TV trays they asked for to offer chair-side snacks for guests. They also received several 500- and 1,000-piece puzzles.
In Green Bay, StreetLights Outreach received a dozen gift cards from local restaurants. This nighttime ministry works in at-risk neighborhoods of Green Bay and offers summer block parties that are attended by up to 350 people. The gift cards will be used as prizes for the children’s games at the parties. “Thanks for doing this again!” said volunteer Tony Pichler.
Elizabeth Ministry International, based in Kaukauna, last year helped 15,000 by providing hope and healing on issues related to childbearing, sexuality and relationships. They received a color, laserjet printer. “Thank you for offering this every year,” said Don Warden, executive director.
In Appleton, the Fox Valley Warming Shelter received donations to go toward a new passenger van which they use to pick up homeless guests from downtown Appleton to take them to the shelter. They also received donations of bus passes and gift cards.
Other groups — Wellspring in Green Bay, Oxford House in Appleton, Father Carr’s Place 2B in Oshkosh, LEAVEN in Appleton, Mother and Unborn Baby Care in Appleton and the Day by Day Warming Shelter in Oshkosh — did not receive their requests. It’s never too late; visit The Compass website link at http://goo.gl/9cducI.
The next Wish List will run early March 2017.