40 Days 40 Cans is a Lenten outreach of Saint Thomas Aquinas Parish. Lent is a season when many Catholics seek to do something positive for others as they prepare to celebrate the Lord’s Resurrection at Easter. Coming as it does during the long days of Winter and early Spring, many sources of food distribution find their shelves emptying after the generous season of Advent and Christmas. 40 Days 40 Cans is an opportunity for our parishioners to respond each day in Lent in a concrete way to help alleviate hunger in our community. It is also a way to make a small but significant sacrifice which will directly benefit those who are less fortunate in Licking County and enable those who participate to comfort the suffering of Christ in those who suffer because of lack of food.
Non-perishable food items may be placed in the collection cart located in the vestibule of the Church before all parish Masses or anytime during the week.
Inspired by Gospel values, this Catholic lay organization leads women and men to join together to grow spiritually by offering person-to-person service to those who are needy and suffering in the tradition of its founder, Blessed Frédéric Ozanam, and patron, Saint Vincent de Paul.
This is an ecumenical ministry calling the Christian faithful together as One to be the hands and feet of Christ. Our mission is to strengthen the community by recognizing the inherent dignity of each person by providing emergency shelter and supportive services to our homeless neighbors.
Contact: Kandice Longstreth 740-453-3301 ext 121
Saint Thomas Church supports Urban Greens, a project of the Muskingum Soil & Water Conservation District, that engages the community in urban agriculture projects in order to build a stronger, healthier, and more resilient community. We partner with them to equip area families with free garden seeds and plants at the annual spring seed drive.
Contact: Kristen Baughman 740-819-4234
What is one of the most needed but least donated items to shelters and other charitable organizations? It’s underwear! What is the bedrock of Catholic Social Teaching? That we are created in the image and likeness of God, with inherent and immeasurable worth and dignity. That’s why no child or adult should endure the humiliation of going without underwear. During the month of August, Saint Thomas Church collects new underwear for children and adults: all sizes, from small children to the largest adult sizes, for both males and females. Donations are distributed to helping organizations throughout our community.
The days between Christmas and Candlemas, December 26 through February 2, have become our annual Baby Shower for Jesus. Throughout this traditional Christmastide, the nativity crèche is left on display in the parish church and parishioners are invited to bring baby items to share with the young babies and their mothers ministered to by outreach ministries in the community. We give these items to Jesus in our church and then He gives them to babies in need in our community. What a wonderful way to extend the joy of Christmas as we encourage young mothers to receive the gift of life with joy! We give witness to our love for the baby Jesus, made flesh among us by the Virgin’s womb, and declare the dignity of all human life from the first moment of conception.
Every Lent, students in our faith formation program learn about the Corporal Works of Mercy through our Blessing Bags project. Parishioners donate toiletries and packaged snacks which the students then sort and assemble into individual bags, which are then donated to area organizations serving the needy
Advent is the perfect opportunity to think of those in our community who are suffering from material and spiritual poverty. Saint Thomas Aquinas Church reaches out to them through our Advent Giving Tree. Parishioners select one or more ornaments from a decorated tree; these ornaments specify the needs of each individual. Parishioners then purchase the gift and place the donation under the tree; volunteers sort, wrap, tag and distribute the gifts.
Our parish joins with hundreds of thousands of jubilant pro-life supporters for the annual March for Life in Washington D.C. each January. The pilgrimage highlights include the Opening Mass of the National Prayer Vigil for Life at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, participation in the March for Life, Mass at the National Shrine of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, and the opportunity for prayer at the National Shrine Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes.
Saint Thomas hosts the Muskingum Valley Right to Life (MVRL) group for their monthly meetings on the 4th Tuesdays at 7 pm. MVRL is a nonpartisan, nonsectarian, nonprofit organization of diverse and caring people united to protect the precious gift of human life.
The Catholic bishops of the United States are pleased to offer once again to the Catholic faithful Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship, our teaching document on the political responsibility of Catholics.
The mission of Heartbeats is to create an environment where every human heart is cherished and protected within the womb and in strong families. Heartbeats helps women in crisis pregnancies and encourages chastity as a positive lifestyle. See their website at www.heartbeats.org
Catholic Social Services based out of Columbus offers a variety of services ranging from prevention and education to crisis intervention. All are designed to help families succeed. This service is committed to collaborating with other church-initiated efforts in needs assessment, program planning and service delivery. In Zanesville, the work of CSS is focused on the elderly. Their office is located on Main Street. See their website at www.colscss.org/service_location/zanesville/
“Sorrow and Mourning Flee Away: Pastoral Letter on Migration to the People of God in the Diocese of El Paso,” by Bishop Mark Seitz of the Diocese of El Paso, Texas, following Pope Francis’ visit to the border region. The letter is the first official pastoral letter on immigration issued by a U.S. Catholic bishop in a number of years and builds on a pastoral letter issued by the Bishops Conferences of the United States and Mexico, “Strangers No Longer: Together On the Journey of Hope.” Bishop Seitz spoke directly to examples from a broken immigration system, and emphasized the need to respond as a Catholic community to “do all we can, as Pope Francis has called us; to accompany people in these struggles.” Please follow this link to read Bishop Seitz’ pastoral letter: http://www.bordermigrant.org/
* These are non-parish-affiliated groups that we encourage you to support.