Disconcerting News About Food for the Poor

Sunday afternoon, I sat down to read the Sunday papers. I was rather disconcerted to read a headline from the Boston Globe. “Leading hunger relief charity challenged on its claim of low costs.” The story was about Food for the Poor, the agency who Fr. Glenn Baptiste had just gotten done speaking about at Masses last weekend.

According to the article Food for the Poor is being investigated by the California Attorney General’s Office. That office says it is inflating the value of in-kind gifts to the charity. Most of those gifts are donations of medication from US pharmaceutical companies. The attorney general claims that Food for the Poor gives those donations the value they would have on the US market rather than on the world market. This inflates their value and thus the value of donations made to Food for the Poor. The California Attorney General’s Office says that this also allows Food for the Poor to claim that administrative costs are lower than they actually are.

There is nothing in the article that claims Food for the Poor is misusing donations. They aren’t buying Lear Jets for their executives. The Globe article says, “Ruth McCambridge, editor of the Nonprofit Quarterly, based in Boston, said that inflating the value of donations has “long roots” in the charitable world. “If they overvalue those goods, they make their budget look bigger than it is,” said McCambridge.” That doesn’t mean that because many charities over value their donations it doesn’t matter that Food for the Poor does it too. I believe we should always be truthful, accountable and honest. I’ll be following the outcome of the California Attorney General’s investigation over the coming months before we do any more fundraising for Food for the Poor. I have photocopied the article from the Globe and placed copies on the table at the back of the church. You can also read the article from last Sunday’s Globe online at www.Boston.com.

77th Catholic Charities Appeal Ongoing

Following up on the Food for the Poor situation, charity watchdogs encourage donors to donate close to home. They encourage donating to causes where we can observe their work. That means that our local Catholic Charities Appeal is a good recipient of our donations because we can see its fruits here in our own community. The Appeal is the only time each year our Church asks us all to support the local charitable agencies and apostolates that provide housing for vulnerable populations, care and support for the disabled and ill, and healthy programs such as scouting and youth ministry.

This year the parish set its own goal to increase our donations by 5%. That is a parish goal of $56,705. Last week we sent out reminder letters to parishioners who have not yet contributed to the Appeal. Thanks to —- generous parishioners who have already contributed $—— to this year’s appeal we are more than half way to our goal. If our letter and your contribution crossed in the mail thank you for your donation. We would also like to increase the number of parish household contributing to the 2018 Appeal to 100%. If you have never contributed to the Appeal please prayerfully consider doing so this year.

A gift of $50 is $1 a week. A gift of $100 is just $10 a month. A $300 donation is less than $1 a day. Prayerfully, consider your gift to the needy in the name of Jesus. You can charge your donation to a credit card. MasterCard, Visa, AMEX and Discover cards are all accepted by the Appeal. Some employers offer matching gifts for their employee or retirees charitable gifts. Maybe you can double your gift.

Thank you for coming.

Thank you to the almost 100 parishioners who attended the parish listening session held on Thursday evening, May 31, 2018. It was encouraging to see so many people taking the time to come out and express their hope and dreams for the parish. We are already working on some of those hope and dreams becoming a reality. Some others we will start working on but as is always the case some can’t realistically be accomplished for various reasons. Participant’s observations and comments are being tabulated by the facilitator, Marilyn Blanchard and will be sent back to us to consider as we plan to strengthen Holy Redeemer Parish.

Congratulation to Graduates and Anniversary Couples

June is graduation season so it is appropriate to wish members of the parish who are graduating from high school, college or grad school our prayerful best wishes. We are proud of your accomplishments and look for more wonderful things to come. June is also traditionally a month for weddings. So, if you are celebrating a wedding anniversary this month we want to express our best wishes to you too.

Permanent Deaconate Information Nights

Informational nights for a new class of Permanent Deaconate candidates to begin in the spring of 2019 are planned for Tuesday evening June 12, 2019, and August 28, 2019. Both meeting begin at 7:00 p and will be held at Holy Name of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish Center, 121 Mt. Pleasant Street, New Bedford, 02740. If you have any questions, please contact Deacon Frank Lucca or Rev. Robert Oliveira, Co-Directors of the Office of the Permanent Diaconate at frpermanentdiaconate@verizon.net or call their office at 508-990-0341

Electronic Giving on the Way

Soon the parish will be offering the opportunity for electronic giving. Parishioners will be able to arrange to have their donations to all parish collections be withdrawn automatically from their checking account or charged to their credit card. You’ll be able to just “Set It and Forget It!” The system will offer contributors a receipt that you can drop in the collection basket. So, feeling awkward about not having something to drop in the basket as it goes by should not be a reason not to sign-up for electronic giving.

Like Us on FACEBOOK

FACEBOOK has become one of the primary communications tools in our world today. It is a good way to send out reminders about parish events like the upcoming Listening Session and other parish news. So, “like us on Facebook” today.