Service & Outreach
Faith without works is dead (James 2:20). Our faith urges us to bring God's message of hope, peace and joy to others, especially those who are going through a trying time.
Our Service & Outreach programs put our faith into action. Are you be willing to reach out to someone in need? We can use your generosity. Do you want to give back in thanksgiving for all the blessings in your life? Your time could bring joy to so many others. Or maybe you are in need of some support yourself? Hopefully, we can help.
Select a Service & Outreach Group
AA - Alcoholics Anonymous
AA - Alcoholics Anonymous
Alcoholics Anonymous® is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism.
The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking.
There are no dues or fees for AA membership; the fellowship is self-supporting through free-will contributions. AA is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution; does not wish to engage in any controversy, neither endorses nor opposes any causes.
Our primary purpose is to stay sober and help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety.
Meetings: Thursdays – Year Round
8:00 pm – 9:30 pm
For over 55 years, Al-Anon (which includes Alateen for younger members) has been offering strength and hope for friends and families of problem drinkers. It is estimated that each alcoholic affects the lives of at least four other people... alcoholism is truly a family disease.
No matter what relationship you have with an alcoholic, whether they are still drinking or not, all who have been affected by someone else’s drinking can find solutions that lead to serenity in the Al-Anon/Alateen fellowship.
Celebration of Life Mass
At our annual Celebration of Life Mass, we remember and pray for all those whose mass of Christian burial took place at this parish over the past year. The coordinator and other parish volunteers contact the loved ones of the deceased to participate in this mass.
This mass is held on a designated Tuesday evening mass during the Easter season.
Culture of Life
The Culture of Life Group is a recently formed group consisting of people concerned about pro-life and culture of life issues facing society today. The mission of our group is to gather and disseminate information on pro-life and culture of life issues so that we can be more pro-active and encourage others to be active within our parish and our community.
We meet once a month except during the summer, generally from 10:30 a.m. to noon on a Wednesday. Our meetings consist of an opening prayer, presentation and discussion of pro-life and culture of life issues and discussion of our participation in current and upcoming activities relevant to our group.
In addition to our monthly meetings, we participate in a Cenacle of Life where we spend a Holy Hour of Adoration before the Blessed Sacrament on Wednesday’s from 4:00 - 5:00 p.m. We pray the Rosary and Divine Mercy Chaplet in reparation and for an end to abortion.
Some of the activities we participate in are:
40 Days for Life Campaign
National March for Life in Ottawa – (2nd Thursday of May)
Witnessing outside the Cabbagetown Women’s Clinic adjacent to Aid To Women
Life Chain – on a designated Sunday in October
Maintain and update a church bulletin board display of pro-life and culture of life messages
Contact: Lina Vanin 416-743-6219
Daughters of Mary
The Daughters of Mary are a spiritual, social and service group for all ladies. They gather for prayer and discussion. They also organize hospitality in the church hall for parish events or, upon request, following a funeral.
The group meets on the 1st Tuesday of the month after 7:30pm mass, in the church hall
Contact: Jan Glover
Kipling Acres Visitation Group
This group has a long and proud tradition of service at St. Benedict. Volunteer men and women assist residents of Kipling Acres Seniors Residence from their rooms to the main floor for mass on Tuesday mornings. Volunteers accompany residents back to their rooms after mass. Eucharistic ministers bring communion to the residents who are unable to go to mass.
Tuesdays 9:30 am at Kipling Acres.
Contact: Joe Ryan
Knights of Columbus
The Knights of Columbus is the largest Catholic fraternal service organization in the world. There are over 13,000 Councils and more than 1.7 million members worldwide. We have been called the strong right arm of the Church, praised by popes and world leaders for the support of the Church, programs of evangelization and Catholic Education, civic involvement and those in need. We are Catholic men 18 and older who are committed to making the community a better place.
The Knights are about enhancing their faith and protecting and nurturing family life. Our order is based on three principles: Charity, Unity and Fraternity.
How does one become a Knight?
To become a full fledged Knight you need to go through a degree for each one of the principles that outline its meaning and how we use them. An opportunity for admission to the Fourth degree of Patriotism, which is the ceremonial arm of our order, is also available to any Knight that has completed their Third degree.
Knight’s Council at St. Benedict Church
Focus on Youth: Here at St. Benedict, our Council has grown quickly since 2007 to over 100 members. In light of the patron of our Council, St. John Bosco, much of our focus is on youth. We sponsor the Squires Circle with funding, leadership and physical support in order for young boys to have a place to go to learn to become the leaders of tomorrow and enhance their own faith life. We have at present 4 Counselors that work with the boys and 2 more awaiting their accreditation. This council provides them with funds to carry out their own programs and it supports their own fundraising by providing the cooking for their Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper.
Confirmation Breakfast: Our St. John Bosco Council also supports the youth of St. Benedict church by providing a pancake breakfast for the boy candidates for Confirmation, their fathers and male sponsors at their annual Boys’ Confirmation Breakfast. Beginning in 2011, we look forward to offering the same support in the way of a pancake breakfast in collaboration with another parish group that sponsors the annual Girls’ Confirmation Breakfast held for the girls candidates for Confirmation, their mothers and women sponsors. At both breakfasts, we present each candidate for Confirmation with a rosary.
Bursaries: The St. John Bosco Council proudly supports Summer Daze each year with a $ 2000 donation. We also help financially the young adults of this parish. In our parish schools, we host the Yearly Free Throw competition, a soccer challenge, a poster contest and substance abuse essay contest. There is also an opportunity to receive a bursary from Supreme Council for youth who are children or grandchildren of Knights that are finishing high school and going on the college or university.
Outreach: In our efforts to support community outreach, our council assists St. Vincent de Paul with both manpower and financial aid. Our pro-life initiatives include participation in the 40 Days for Life with a commitment of 1 hour of witnessing at a designated location, witnessing on the annual Life Chain Sunday each October and financial support of the bus rental to Ottawa for the March for Life each May. We have supported our troops with the Tim card program, conducted a Rosary Sunday and helped the Squires with their Blue mass. This year, we are sponsoring a seminarian.
Contact Person: Wolf Hartmann
Over the years, St. Benedict Parish has helped to build schools in Haiti and many other spots where our brothers and sisters have known God’s love through our efforts. Two of our parishioners are missionary sisters: Sr. Claudia Stecker, as a Sister of Our Lady of the Missions, has been serving tirelessly in the Philippines since 1997, and Sr. Salvina (nee Marthese) Pace, a Missioary of Charity, is Mistress of Novices in San Francisco, USA.
Missionary Possibilities for Lay People
You don’t have to be a priest, brother of sister to be a missionary. Have you ever dreamed of living a lay missionary experience in keeping with your Catholic faith? What a wonderful way to spend a year of transition between completing your studies and beginning your career. Wouldn’t it be a courageous way to begin your retirement?
Salesian Lay Missioners (SLMs)
One branch of our Salesian family is the Salesian Lay Missioners (SLMs). This is a Catholic association of men and women, seeking to answer God’s missionary call in their own lives by dedicating themselves to works of education, evangelization and human development among poor youth.
Three St. Benedict parishioners have recently lived powerful SLM experiences. In 2010 Nicole Leblanc served in Kenya and Lionel Alleluia spent a year in a Salesian orphanage and school in Rwanda. In 2011, Monica Marcelli will spend 10 months with the Salesian sisters in Cambodia.
SLMs share in the tradition, prayer, work, family spirit, community life and educational method of the Salesians of Don Bosco, while living in community with Salesians and other missioners. SLMs work in various projects to provide an educational experience for young people and are committed to be, above all, Christian witnesses.
For more information:
Salesian Sisters (Toronto): VIDES
Contact: Sr. Jeannine Landry 416 744-8805
Salesians Missions ~ Lay Missioners (New York): VIS ??
Contact: Mr. Adam Rudin
For missionary experiences within the USA:
Salesian Domestic Volunteers ??
Most of us, for many good reasons, won’t be able to go abroad. However, we can still be missionaries from home by sending desperately needed financial support.
Canada: Don Bosco Mission Office
USA: Salesian Missions?
Out of the Cold
What is it?
An outreach program for the homeless which was first established in 1987 by a group of students of St. Michael’s School under the guidance of Sister Susan Moran of the order of Our Lady of Perpetual Sorrow in order to try to alleviate the homeless of our City. Although its origins are catholic, the program was soon liked by many different faith groups who have since joined and are also committed to providing this much needed service. The program depends entirely on the support of people from local parishes and communities and is fully operated by way of volunteers and donations. Each of the site location operates the program one night a week for about 21to 23 weeks during the winter season. Therefore there is also a place for the homeless to go to on any given night.
Where and how does our Parish contribute?
Many of our parishioners have volunteered since 2004 through Our Lady of Peace Catholic Church at the St. Matthew Anglican Church site located at 3962 Bloor Street West (Kipling/Bloor). The program opens the doors to its guests on Sunday afternoons and provides a warm home cooked meal dinner (for about 60-80 homeless people) showers, laundry facilities, a movie, social interaction and support, overnight accommodation (for up to 30 men), breakfast and sends each overnight guest off with a TTC token and a healthy bag of lunch.
As a parish community through our parish organizers we prepare 1, 2 3 or 4 meals each season which we then deliver and serve on our chosen Sundays. We also provide financial donations, bags of lunches and deliver warm winter clothing and other items which are necessary to assist those in need.
How can you contribute? By volunteering your personal service or by donating, money, food, clothing or other items required Prior to the scheduled meal date an announcement will be made and an organizer will be in the Church’s foyer to collect donations and to sign up those wishing to volunteer in the preparation of the meal, serving or cleaning.
Clothing/Other items donations
In the front foyer there is a built in box in which you may drop off your clothing and items donations which are collected by Mario Mendicino (during the months of November to April) and delivered to the center on a weekly basis.
Donation items: T.T.C. Tokens, Pocket Books, magazines
Toiletries: Toothbrushes, toothpaste (travel size),razors (disposable), deodorant (travel size), combs/brushes, Shower towels, Laundry soap
Men’s clothes: new underwear, socks, long johns, jeans, sweat suits, t-shirts, sweaters (med/lg/ex-lg), Ski and Winter coats, gloves, hats, shoes, snow boots, back packs or duffle bags
For more information about the Out of the Cold program, visit their official website: http://www.ootc.ca/ ???
Contacts: Meaghan Gallagher firstname.lastname@example.org
Collection of Letters and Articles
September 8 - 1 Year Anniversary of Project Hope
September 8 - “Project Hope” Guardian Angels
September 8 - Infographic - Project Hope 1 Year Update
January 20 - Syrian Family, Thank You Sponsorship Donors
January 5 - Maclean's Article-When it comes to Syrian refugees Canada is falling behind
November - Syrian Family Arrives in Toronto
Iraqi Christians Fact Sheet
August 8 - Cardinal Thomas Collins Condemns Treatment of Iraqi Christians
August 7 - Cardinal Collins Iraqi Christians Statement
April - Iraqi Family Arrival in Toronto
Syrian Refugees Flood Neighboring Countries
Archbishop's Letter Inviting Parishes to Sponsor a Refugee Family
Organizations Associated with Refugee Work
Catholic Near East Welfare Association (CNEWA)
Office for Refugees - Archdiocese of Toronto
How to Support Our Parish Sponsorship of a Refugee Family
Sewing & Quilting Club
This women's group is a remarkalbe 'Go Green' initiative that has been going strong long before it became stylish to care for our planet. These ladies collect remnants of fabric and sew them into beatiful blankets and quilts to support various outreach ministries including the homeless and single mothers. Their creative masterpieces have litterally covered the globe, as the warmth of their blankets has been enjoyed by people in missionary lands across the planet.