St. Mary Staff Field Trip to Catholic Charities

Friday, June 4, 2010

The parish staff headed out to tour Catholic Charities’ new facilities this past Friday for some learning and bonding time.
We were joined by several of Catholic Charities’ key staff including Kevin Sartorius, Executive Director, John O’Neille, Coordinator of Volunteers, and Tish Stuart, Director of Mission Advancement and Development.

O’Neille headed up the tour starting with the Chapel filled with beautiful stained glass and pews which were interestingly enough found on Ebay for well below the price of one single pew.

Next we visited the computer lab where classes are taught to help people learn basic skills and be able to utilize the internet. We then viewed the beautiful and large kitchen where they have hopes of providing more large scale meals to clients in the future. Eventually, they will be looking for volunteer groups to cook off and on. Among other uses, the kitchen provides a great place to teach new mothers new cooking skills. A handy meeting room area is adjacent to the kitchen. It is used for classes and dining and can be divided up into smaller sections.

St. Elizabeth’s Lodge was next on our tour. It is a place for young pregnant women to receive housing and help preparing for motherhood. Beautiful facilities!

We then moved on to the St. Joseph Residence which provides the nearly impossible to find service of housing for entire families. Most human services housing is divided up for individuals and does not take into account the family unit, so this is a wonderful service they provide to Tulsans.

Next we toured the food pantry where orders are filled daily with not only non-perishables, but also milk, produce and fresh meat. After this facility, we saw the large storage center where they take in donations and sort through them. The clothing from here goes into a neat little shop where clients can enjoy an organized and clean shopping experience. Things Catholic Charities needs especially? Car seats.

A quick walk through the Xavier Medical Center allowed us to view a place, with the exception of two employees, run entirely by volunteers. Doctors, nurses, dentists, etc. all join together to devote time providing care for those who may not otherwise be able to afford it. They are always needing new and willing volunteers.

We ended out field trip with a meal at Oklahoma Style Bar-B-Que. I had the chopped beef sandwich and green beans, and it was awesome.

Check out the slideshow of our entire tour:

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