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100 years Reflecting on a Century of Changing Lives
There’s something greater in us all. At Catholic Charities, we are taking time to reflect on the past 100 years of doing more, together and honoring the community members that contributed toward making meaningful change.
This 100th anniversary also presents an opportunity to ask ourselves—how can we do more? We look ahead to the next 100 years of continuing our work to help the community live up to its full potential.
Reflecting Back on a Century
100 year timeline presenting major moments in Catholic Charities’ history
In 1792, Bishop John Carroll directed parish revenue to be divided into 3 equal parts—1/3 for care of pastors, 1/3 for upkeep of the church and 1/3 for the relief of the poor. This was the symbolic beginning of Catholic Charities.
The Bureau of Catholic Charities was created, founded by Archbishop Michael Joseph Curley. The agency was incorporated by organizing the 12 previously separate Catholic services throughout the Archdiocese under a common mission.
Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Baltimore was officially incorporated under the laws of the State of Maryland, with the objective of promoting the organized effort for the prevention of poverty and the spread of disease in the State of Maryland.
Catholic Charities began considering land outside of Baltimore City for programming. One year later, Villa St. Maria—now known as St. Vincent’s Villa and Villa Maria School—opened in Timonium.
On January 3, the following institutions were merged into Catholic Charities, Inc., which has become the successor corporation of these institutions: The Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Baltimore, Inc., St. Anthony’s Orphan Asylum of Baltimore, St. Mary’s Female Orphan Asylum of Baltimore, St. Vincent’s Infant Home of the City of Baltimore, St. James Home for Boys of the City of Baltimore, St. Mary’s Industrial School for Boys of the City of Baltimore.
The Hispanic Apostolate, with programming that later grew to become the Esperanza Center, opened to serve the needs of Spanish-speaking neighbors in Baltimore.
The Gallagher Center opened in Timonium to provide support for individuals with developmental/ intellectual disability.
Our Daily Bread officially opened and began serving meals each day and programming serving neighbors who need housing or food is established. These programs would grow to become My Sister’s Place Women’s Center in Baltimore, Sarah’s House in Anne Arundel County, Anna’s House in Harford County and others.
St. Elizabeth’s Home for Nursing Care opens on the Jenkins Campus in Baltimore. Eventually, St. Elizabeth’s became a 162-bed nursing facility that provides high-quality long- and short-term nursing and rehabilitative care to its residents. Many other Catholic Charities senior care and senior communities open in the 90s.
The Cybercenter, now closed, became the first official Catholic Charities program to offer employment services. This grew to become a network of job training and placement services now operating across the organization.
In the devastating aftermath of the death of Baltimore resident Freddie Gray at the hands of police, Catholic Charities began considering a community-based approach to violence interruption that led to the opening of two Safe Streets sites. That same year, rooted in trauma-informed care, Catholic Charities began its behavioral health services in schools and clinics.
As the COVID-19 pandemic took hold of the communities Catholic Charities served, programs pivoted to enable safe accompaniment with minimal service interruption and gave rise to new programming aimed at filling a significant need in the workforce while creating a career path for neighbors interested in nursing by training them as certified or geriatric nursing assistants.
Family Fun In Person September 09, 2023
Dragon Boat Race 2023
Location: Inner Harbor
2023 will commemorate the 12th biennial Catholic Charities Dragon Boat Races – a truly special event that combines athleticism and competition with fundraising and awareness of Catholic Charities.Event Details
Catholic Charities Today
Andrew doesn’t want his children ever to experience the financial insecurity and homelessness that he has endured for more than half of his life. With parents who were unable to care for him, he was “in foster care at age four,” he said, “arrested at 19, and released with nowhere to go, bouncing back and forth from place to place, staying outside.”Read Full Story
Aging with Dignity
St. Elizabeth’s Rehabilitation and Nursing Center
Christine has always admired her caring and indomitable mother. Bertha Paul rose to a management position at Montgomery Ward’s, and then ran a daycare business out of her home. “My mother is a very loving person, and she threw everything she had into taking care of other people’s children after raising six of her own,” she said.Read Full Story
St. Edward’s Workforce Development Center
When Derek got his one-year certificate at Vehicles for Change, it was the longest he’d ever worked at a job. “I get to work early every day,” he said. “Working on cars for me brings a certain joy of fulfillment that I can’t explain, and add to that, I know we’re doing something for the greater good by donating cars to needy families, helping them get out of their situation too.”Read Full Story
Healing Trauma & Addiction
St. Vincent’s Villa
When Rev. Dr. Jalene Chase was 5 years old, she made a friend who often seemed sad. Eventually, the friend told Jalene a man in her household was hurting her. Jalene told her own mother, who tried unsuccessfully to intervene. When her friend was killed in an accident on her way home from school, Jalene believed the girl had ridden her bike into traffic.Read Full Story
Welcoming New Neighbors
In 2012, 16-year-old Williams was just one of tens of thousands of children from Central America crossing the southern border into the U.S. alone. When he was apprehended in Texas upon arrival, Williams had already endured a terrifying journey and still faced an uncertain future. In leaving El Salvador, he had simply been running for his life.Read Full Story
Supporting Children & Families
Carroll County Head Start
When their grandson, Oliver, was born, Susan and Marlin Felmey were there to help. “It’s so expensive to live in Carroll County, it’s hard to make ends meet,” they said. So their empty nest was full again. When Oliver was 18 months old, their daughter enrolled Oliver in Head Start, and “our only complaint is that it doesn’t go to 12th grade,” Marlin said. “We have loved every minute.”Read Full Story
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