Message from the Executive Director
At a recent day of reflection, an IVC volunteer shared this with his group:
“At my service site I can now see what it means that love turns despair into hope, darkness into light. When I meet one of our clients, just my presence, my desire to care and help brings hope. I can see quite concretely how that hope changes a life.”
The twin seasons of Christmas and Epiphany converge with New Year’s – all celebrate hope. Hope is a powerful human emotion that pulls us forward, urges us to act in ways that carry out our dreams, to live a full life as God intended. Hope compelled the wise men to leave comfort, travel far and seek a miracle.
People who come to the agencies where we place volunteers are hope seekers in the truest sense. The darkness that may have dimmed their lives through physical limitations, material poverty or despair, is something they seek to overcome. IVC volunteers meet them in that place and together hope is alive. Lives transform for both.
May your new year be filled with moments where your hopes are realized and you experience the fullness of your life as God intended. Thank you for all you do to bring hope to others through IVC service!
Be sure and read below a profile of an IVC volunteer – I guarantee you’ll be inspired.
Mary C. McGinnity
Today, as we celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany and the joy that the Christ Child brought into the world, we pray:
May this holy season be for each of us
A time of moving beyond what is “reasonable”
And toward the star of wonder;
Moving beyond grasping tight to what we have
To unclenching our hands and letting go,
Following the Light where it leads;
Moving beyond competition toward cooperation,
Seeing that all humans are sisters and brothers.
Moving beyond the anxiety of small concerns
Towards the joys of justice and peace.
May the transforming acceptance of Mary and Joseph,
The imagination of the shepherds,
And the persistence of the wise men
Guide us as we seek the Truth,
Always moving toward the Divine promise.
Always aware God can be hidden in the frailest among us,
Always open to the unexpected flash of Grace,
To the showing forth of that Love that embraces us all.
From Education for Justice. Adapted by J.M. Deren from "Blessings and Benedictions" by W.L. Wallace in Shine On, Star of Bethlehem, CAFOD, 2004.
Volunteer Profile: Anita Healy O'Neill of Baltimore
Anita Healy O’Neill of IVC Baltimore works three days a week at the Franciscan Center and is one of the first faces to greet clients entering this multiservice agency. Christian Metzger, Acting Executive Director, says, “Anita is a pleasure to be around. She shares our mission to treat people with dignity and to give people a new start. Every time I see her in here, she’s living it.”
IVC's Anita Healy O'Neill working with a client at the Franciscan Center in Baltimore
The center provides an extensive menu of services ranging from meals, emergency assistance, transportation, referrals for medical care, among other programs. Anita meets with clients and screens them for their eligibility for gas and electric heating assistance. The relationships she’s formed across agencies create a web of service “to make things work for our clients”.
“Through her work, Anita has enabled the Franciscan Center to serve many more clients and has increased our capacity several times over”, describes Christian Metzger. “She is giving way more hours than her commitment. This shows how much she cares and really wants to help people. Her presence has been a great partnership, since it’s something that she enjoys and fits into her skill set. Because of her efforts navigating complex formulas, we have been able to take on a new program that has provided over $80,000 of emergency assistance funds. She really stepped up to take on this program and make it work.”
Now in her third year in IVC and her second at the Franciscan Center in Baltimore, Anita has had a tremendous impact.
“As I was thinking about retirement, the notion of IVC kept coming up and wouldn’t go away,” she states. “I felt an almost irresistible urge to do IVC. Saying ‘yes’ to IVC was helpful to me in making my decision to retire, since I was retiring to something positive”. Read more
IVC in the Media
Click here to read a feature story on IVC, “Living the Mission”, in the College of the Holy Cross’s Alumni Magazine.
Read a profile of IVC volunteers in the Twin Cities in The Catholic Spirit.
IVC’s new website debuts later this month – check www.ivcusa.org for our new look – and share with your friends!
Thank you for your consideration of IVC's Annual Appeal, in progress today. If you have not received our gratitude card in the mail and would like to make a gift, please click here.
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In This Edition:
Message from IVC Executive Director
IVC in the Media
Be Part of IVC
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