By Marnie McAllister, Record Editor
Representatives of local Catholic service agencies gathered at the Archdiocese of Louisville’s Pastoral Center Oct. 2 to discuss what they do and how they might work together.
“There was a lot of excitement,” said Lisa DeJaco Crutcher, CEO of Catholic Charities of Louisvillewhich convened the event. “There were so many people in the room that didn’t know what someone else was doing. There were some really good discussions about issues we face commonly.”
The “Catholic Convening” included lunch and a presentation by Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz on “The role of service in our faith, Catholic identity and collaboration.”
The meeting also included an opportunity for each organization to share its mission.
Participants took part in several discussions, including a conversation about how the organizations express their Catholic identity, said DeJaco Crutcher.
They also explored how those gathered can work together and how they can collectively make their work more visible in the community, she said.
DeJaco Crutcher noted that another topic that came up in discussion — and resonated with the participants — centered on the current political climate.
The discussion centered on how the agencies can keep their work separate from the political realm or from political interpretation.
“There is such a tendency right now to see everything through a political lens instead of through our faith,” said DeJaco Crutcher. The works of these agencies, she said, “are issues of faith and not of politics.”
Agencies that participated in this initial gathering, in addition to Catholic Charities, were:
Boys and Girls Haven, the Catholic Enrichment Center, Community Catholic Center, Doors to Hope, Family Community Clinic, Franciscan Kitchen, Golden Arrow Center, Harmony and Health Foundation, Little Sisters of the Poor, Little Way Pregnancy Resource Center, Nazareth Home, Schuhmann Center, Sitio Clothing Ministry, St. John Center, St. Joseph Children’s Home, St. Joseph Home for the Aged, St. Mary’s Center and the Society of St. Vincent de Paul.