For more information and to begin receiving the Service & Justice E-Newsletter, contact [email protected]. For current volunteer opportunities, click here.
Catholic Social Teaching is grounded in the gospel message of Jesus Christ and 2,000 years of lived tradition in the Church. St. Francis of Assisi, Sister Thea Bowman, Dorothy Day, Thomas Merton, St. Oscar Romero, St. Teresa of Calcutta and many others have guided the Church’s understanding of how to live as Catholic Christians in the world. In the past 130 years, Catholic Social Teaching been addressed in a variety of encyclicals, pastoral letters, and other writings.
Newman shops, cooks, serves, and cleans up at the Loaves & Fishes Soup Kitchen the second Wednesday of the month. Loaves and Fishes Soup Kitchen is located at the Wilkes Boulevard United Methodist Church. For more information, email [email protected].
The next Loaves and Fishes night is June 14th.
Serve with parishioners every second Tuesday of the month from 5:30-7:30 p.m.! The Food Bank depends on volunteer groups to repackage food for the recipients. Volunteers must be at least 9 years old and wear closed-toed shoes.
Due to the Food Bank’s volunteer system, you must register by 4 p.m. on the Friday before the Monday that Newman volunteers for. To register:
- Click here.
- Select which Newman Night at the Food Bank you would like to volunteer for (you can select multiple). If this is the first time you are registering, it will ask you to create a volunteer profile.
For questions, contact Samantha Cripe, Volunteer Coordinator at (573) 474-1020, or Gloria Young at (573) 673.3070.
Beth Shalom Interfaith Garden is a garden run by congregation Beth Shalom Jewish house of worship and parishoners of St. Thomas More Newman Center in an effort to raise organically grown produce, which goes to the Central Missouri Food Pantry for distribution to low income members of the Columbia community.
Volunteers can help with nearly every part of the gardening process, and volunteers are also needed who can help with chores involving lifting and moving heavy supplies and equipment. Individuals with knowledge of and interest in landscaping with flowers to attract beneficial insects are needed as well!
If interested, contact Lily Chan at [email protected]
For students, both Campus Ministry and FOCUS offer several opportunities for you to serve during your spring or summer breaks. Campus Ministry offers at least one spring break trip each year (domestic or international) for you to serve others in need and learning about the issues that keep them in a cycle of injustice. Fundraising hours earned by working the parking lot before home football games or calling during the annual thank-a-thon can discount the cost of the trip significantly! Previous mission trips have worked with the poor, homeless, immigrants and disaster victims. In addition, FOCUS trips are available through the FOCUS Missions page (focusmissions.org) and by talking to the missionaries.
When opportunities arise, Newman also coordinates trips for students and residents. Past trips have included going to our sister parish in El Salvador and working with migrants on the border in Texas.
Newman gives back to the Columbia community through monthly and seasonal collection drives. For more information, contact [email protected]
- Monthly personal care collection that supports a different group each month. Past monthly collections have benefited St. Francis House, Welcome Home Ministry to Veterans, True North Domestic Violence Shelter, the My Life Clinic, Tiger Pantry and more. See the bulletin or the silver bin near the entrance for the current month's beneficiary.
- Monthly food collection to benefit Central Pantry: donate non-perishable food to the food collection bin near the entrance.
- Seasonal Drives: Warm Up Columbia in the fall, the Giving Tree in Advent, and School Supply Drives in late July
Newman has been in a sistering relationship with a church community in La Libertad, El Salvador since 2013. Delegations from Newman have visited El Salvador, and delegations from El Salvador have visited Newman! Our yearly Lenten Project raises funds to support community gardens, microloan groups, and youth groups.
As a "tithing parish," the Newman Center contributes five percent of the offertory each month to nonprofit organizations. Those organizations and percentage each one receives are chosen by the Newman tithing committee each fiscal year. See the last bulletin of each month for a published report of who and how much the parish tithed to in the previous month.
Columbia Meals on Wheels
This is a not-for-profit agency that delivers nutritious, hot meals (lunch and/or dinner) to individuals in Columbia who are mostly confined to their homes because of illness, handicap, post-hospitalization period, and caregiving for another sick family member in the home or other situation. Meal costs are very reasonable but over 80% of current recipients have incomes below the federal poverty level so financial subsidies are absolutely required. Our tithing is used to subsidize this basic need. The agency relies on 180 volunteer drivers to deliver the meals (and, not incidentally, to check on the recipient if an unexplained disruption occurs) to about 235 people who may use the service temporarily or on a longer-term basis.
Coyote Hill Children’s Home
Coyote Hill Christian Children’s Home is “A Safe Place to Be a Child” for abused and neglected children between the ages of 6 and 14. Children at Coyote Hill benefit from a positive educational atmosphere, adequate access to health care, quality food, good parenting, exposure to a Christian foundation, and many other aspects that give the children the opportunity to witness the value of a positive, family-focused environment. Children who are at the highest risk for abuse and neglect usually live in families where the parents were also abused as children. Without this positive intervention, the cycle of abuse is likely to perpetuate to the next generation. Coyote Hill Children’s Home works hard each and every day to break those vicious cycles of abuse and replace them with future cycles of success – success as spouses, parents, employees, and members of our communities.
Day Dreams Foundation
The Day Dreams Foundation eliminates financial barriers to participating in extracurricular activities and promotes healthy life styles, goal setting, academics, teamwork, and respect for others. Founded in 2014, the Day Dreams Foundation has awarded scholarships to more than 200 kids in Columbia for extracurricular activity fees, equipment costs, and college scholarships. The Day Dream Foundation exists so that every child can fulfill their dream of participating in an extracurricular activity without ever worrying about the cost.
Food Bank of Central/NE MO
Serving Central and Northeast Missouri, this agency purchases bulk foods and solicits and receives hundreds of food contributions that it distributes to food pantries, schools, homeless shelters and other agencies to feed about 114,000 needy people every month. In addition to our tithing, parish volunteer groups regularly package foods at the Bank’s warehouse and many parishioners aid the Columbia Food Pantry (Bear Creek) directly through our monthly, non-perishable food collections.
Habitat for Humanity
Dedicated to providing affordable housing to income –eligible families, Habitat creates a strong partnership with potential buyers who must complete 200-350 hours of sweat equity to be allowed to enter into a twenty year, no interest, no profit mortgage with the agency. Homes completed in Columbia number 124. Some African refugee families, resettled here by our diocesan Refugee and Immigration Services, have been able to earn a Habitat home. Newman parishioners volunteer in building the homes, helping the families meet the requirements, assisting in the homes’ dedication celebrations! Tithing funds are used specifically in advance planning: purchasing building permits and other city/county fees.
Heart of Missouri Girls on the Run
Heart of Missouri Girls on the Run is the local branch of an international nonprofit that has a mission to inspire girls to be joyful, healthy, and confident using a fun, experience-based curriculum which creatively integrates running. Trained coaches lead small teams through our research-based curricula, which includes dynamic discussions, activities, and running games. Over the course of the ten-week program, girls in third through eighth grade develop essential skills to help them navigate their worlds and establish a lifetime appreciation for health and fitness.
Life Network of Central Missouri
This is a nonprofit Christian organization dedicated to promoting the choice of life for women in unplanned pregnancies. Through My Life Clinic, it offers pregnancy tests, STD and STI tests, physician referrals, ultrasound, prenatal vitamin vouchers. It also provides baby supplies as needed, and offers classes in parenting. Tithing supports the mission of the agency.
LOVE, INC (Love, In the Name of Christ)
This is a gospel-driven organization that exists to “Connect and Equip,” by connecting those in need with those willing to help; equipping those willing to help with training resources and encouragement; equipping those in need with supportive friends and assistance in many forms to move forward in life. Beyond financial support, many Columbia churches provide the resource backup for concrete services, hospitality for meetings and education groups, tutoring, sewing lessons, classes in parenting and financial management. Professional social work staff and volunteers act on the belief that a trusting relationship with a family-in-need is the only basis for trying to alleviate the underlying issues that keep people mired in poverty, violence, addictions and defeat. Newman parishioners were instrumental in creating a furniture bank under LOVE, INC’s auspices which has now evolved into The Love Seat used furniture and clothing store on the Business Loop.
Spectrum Health Care
Formerly known as “Rain” (Regional Aids Interfaith Network) of Central Missouri, this is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to helping economically disadvantaged people living with HIV/AIDS. It serves 37 counties in Missouri offering housing and utility expenses, health care resources, medication assistance, and referrals for dental and mental health needs. It also has a special Emergency Food Voucher program to provide additional access to food beyond what the food pantries can do. It supplements the state food stamps program to allow the ill client to purchase more nutritious or more specialized foods necessitated by his/her health condition. Our tithing is devoted specifically to the Food Voucher program.
St. Francis Catholic Worker Community Hospitality Mission (St. Francis House, Lois Bryant House, Loaves and Fishes Soup Kitchen)
This Columbia unit of the Catholic Worker movement has, for over 25 years, provided food and shelter to the poor in accord with the call to action Christ gave in the Sermon on the Mount. Emergency shelter and longer –term housing for some is offered through St. Francis House (men) and Lois Bryant House (women/families) and their facilities provide early morning access to showers, toiletries, food, laundry facilities and telephones for the poor who live on the streets. They operate Loaves and Fishes Soup Kitchen where a daily meal is served to dozens of guests every day of the year. Our tithing is dedicated specifically to the hospitality mission. Newman parishioners are very active in every aspect of this unique community.
Tiger Pantry was founded on November 14, 2012 and serves as an auxiliary of the Central and Northeast Missouri Food Bank, providing assistance to anyone affiliated with the University of Missouri, including students, faculty, and staff. The pantry not only provides food for its clients, but also works to educate the campus on issues of food insecurity and the intersectionality of hunger.
This is a private, non-profit agency devoted to the victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. Serving men, women and children, it offers emergency and transitional shelter, crisis intervention, counseling and support, court and hospital advocacy. It operates a hotline available toll-free in Missouri providing information, support and safety planning. Outreach education to the community about the prevalence, prevention and human toll of domestic violence is another major service. Our tithing is specifically used for aid to individuals (medical, transportation, apartment application fees, etc.) and to subsidize the maintenance/occupancy of the shelter.
The Vitae Foundation
Vitae has become a resource and standard bearer for pro-life media both nationally and internationally. It is unique in the scope of expertise it offers the pro-life community.Vitae provides everything from quantitative and qualitative research of selected audiences and markets to professionally produced ad messages.
Voluntary Action Center
This agency is a “jack-of-all-trades” resource for people who don’t know where else to turn. Sent by churches, social agencies, police, neighbors and strangers, the poor come for food, shelter, transportation, utilities help, health care and many other needs. VAC assesses the family situation, offers referrals to other social services, provides small amounts of money for immediate needs, gives bus tickets for local and occasional stranded-traveler problems. Our tithing is specifically targeted to the FISH (Faith in Service to Humanity) fund, originally a coalition of the downtown churches who recognized the need for this kind of help many years ago.
This is a private, not-for-profit agency founded years ago by Vietnam veterans to provide transitional housing, support and outreach to homeless veterans. It coordinates with Truman Veterans Hospital and the VA to see that the veteran receives medical and mental health services, and help in establishing eligibility for veterans’ benefits, food stamps, permanent housing and other assistance. It offers professional counseling, support and the camaraderie of other veteran residents in this very special environment. Our tithing is used in support of the overall mission of the agency.