Kathleen Donahue

God is always doing something new

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Catholic Charities recently hosted the 102nd annual meeting of our board of advisers and released our fiscal year 2019 annual report, “This Day. Everyday. Catholic Charities.” As we were contemplating the theme for this year’s report, we were inspired by both our long history and how every day God is at work doing something new — and he is constantly renewing each of us, encouraging us to take new paths. 

With the support of many individuals and organizations, the chance to start “anew” is something Catholic Charities has the privilege to give thousands of people each day. From food and clothing to housing, job training and counseling, Catholic Charities meets people where they are and works with them to create new opportunities, new behaviors and new futures. Whatever the need — a helping hand or longer term care and support — we are proud to bring our experience and expertise to bear in improving the lives of hundreds of thousands of people each year.

Each day also brings a fresh start for Catholic Charities’ operations. At our 280 service locations, we are constantly taking the pulse of community needs, assessing our program offerings, enhancing collaborations with community partners and ensuring that we are delivering services in the best, most efficient way possible. 

This year we expanded our senior services through a partnership with the Chicago Housing Authority, broke ground on new offices in Round Lake to better serve western Lake County, brought the dignity of a hot shower to hundreds of Chicagoans through our Pope Francis Ministries, formed new partnerships to expand services to those experiencing homelessness and domestic violence, grew our community mental health and addiction services and so much more. 

While Catholic Charities’ role as service provider in the Archdiocese of Chicago is first and foremost, each day Catholic Charities also strives to improve lives on a broader level. We advocate for fair public policies that take into account the lives of the poor and vulnerable at the federal, state and local levels.

Our extensive experience and sometimes innovative approach mean we are frequently called on to share our work, and our programs are often held up as models of quality, impact and efficiency that can be replicated in other communities. We are part of coalitions throughout the region and nationally, working with nonprofit and government partners on addressing issues that range from violence and drug use to health care and housing. 

Every day at Catholic Charities we are inspired by the successes of our clients and motivated by the incredible ways that our supporters help people fight poverty and its effects. More than any building, program or person, Catholic Charities is all of us doing our part each day to help those in need and to bring the kingdom of God a little closer to one another.

Donors, volunteers, staff and clients; parishes, schools, and professional groups; friends, colleagues and strangers come together in extraordinary and impactful ways here. Each day, throughout the many diverse neighborhoods of our city, in every corner of suburban Cook and Lake counties and far beyond, “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning”  (Lam 3:22-23). With the support and collaboration of many, Catholic Charities reveals the constant love and mercy of the Lord that brings the promise of new life and new hope to people each and every morning.  

If you have not had a chance to see Catholic Charities’ 2019 Annual Report, I encourage you to visit catholiccharities.net/publications. I hope you are inspired by the hundreds of thousands of people whose lives have been transformed by our work together. God is indeed always doing something new. He does this in us and through us. This day and every day.


  • catholic charities
  • the voice of catholic charities