No fees, no questions, no one turned away

Dining hall at St. Anthony of Padua Parish in the North Fair Oaks section of San Mateo County provides meals to the area's working poor

As a small group of children played outside, the noise from the dining hall at St. Anthony of Padua overflowed with dozens of conversations. Seated at long rows of tables, a few hundred men and women talked Monday Nov. 5 over trays of beef stew, rice and salad or lingered over cups of coffee. All were guests of the Padua Dining Room, which has served hundreds of lunches six … [Read more...]

“Mass of the Dead for Our Homeless Brethren” held in San Francisco

About 200 people gathered at St. Patrick Church on Nov. 8 to pray for the eternal rest of the human lives ended unceremoniously on city's streets

In the heart of a city becoming as well known for the size of its homeless population as it is for its golden-hued bridge, about 200 people gathered at St. Patrick Church Nov. 8 to pray for the eternal rest of the human lives ended unceremoniously on the streets of San Francisco. Students from Sacred Heart Cathedral Preparatory High School, ICA Cristo Rey, St. Ignatius … [Read more...]

Small band of friars and nuns in habits feed homeless in Los Angeles

Archbishop José Gomez invited Friars and Sisters of the Poor Jesus to Los Angeles earlier this year; four friars and four sisters set out for Skid Row every weekend offering free food and water to the homeless

Friar Benjamin of the Most Holy Trinity walked down Towne Avenue in Skid Row, one hand wheeling an ice chest filled with oranges and bottled water, the other clutching plastic bags of peanut butter and ham and cheese sandwiches, chips and fruit snacks. Dressed in a full habit, a straw hat and brown flip-flops, Friar Benjamin, 42, along with a group of three other friars, one … [Read more...]

Southern California churches, temples open parking lots to homeless living in cars

Diocese of Orange working with a homeless services and housing nonprofit, Illumination Foundation, to finalize plans for a pilot program at a church in north Orange County

On the second night after his church opened its parking lot to people living out of their cars, vans and other vehicles, Glenn Nishibayashi noticed a mother and daughter using one of the spaces. He was interested in knowing how the previous evening worked out for them, and went over to inquire. “This was the first good night’s sleep I’ve had in weeks,” the woman told … [Read more...]

No one is ever turned away

An average of 225 homeless people seek safety and rest on the pews in the sanctuary of St. Boniface church in San Francisco every day

Lack of sleep is one of the most critical health issues for the homeless. An average of 225 homeless people seek safety and rest on the pews in the sanctuary of St. Boniface church in San Francisco every day, thanks to The Gubbio Project. The Gubbio Project was co-founded in 2004 by community activists Shelly Roder and Father Louis Vitale as a non-denominational project of … [Read more...]

Without a home in the City of the Angels

What’s it like living on sidewalks and under bridges?

“Lady! Beautiful lady,” calls out Sister Rosaline Vu, opening the driver’s side door of the metallic Toyota van that has 94,000 hard stop-and-go miles on it. In her plain blue habit, she walks up to a dome tent back from the sidewalk. She says softly, “OK, wake up, Maria,” peeking inside. A short woman wearing a long, heavy sweater over purple pants sits up and comes out, … [Read more...]

Duct tape for Jesus

Church theft incites Guerneville’s local thug to deliver vigilante justice

By Daniel J. Demers, special to California Catholic Daily. This is a story that it is right for all the wrong reasons and wrong for all the right reasons. It is about Harry Siegel, a likeable local thug who died in 2015. In July, 2014 Guerneville’s St. Elizabeth’s Catholic Church was burglarized and robbed. The burglars broke a stained glass window to enter the church in … [Read more...]

Eucharistic Procession through downtown Hollywood draws 800 participants

Event provided encounter with the homeless, began with Mass at Blessed Sacrament parish, concluded with Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament

A Eucharistic procession is not the first thing people expect to see on the streets of Hollywood, California. But last Saturday, that’s what happened, with hundreds of people taking part in an evening of prayer and encounter with the homeless. Nathan Sheets, executive director of The Center, a group that works to fight isolation among the homeless, told CNA that the event … [Read more...]

Could this proposal solve San Diego’s homeless problem?

Camp Hope is one way of housing and feeding the poor, but whether the idea gains popularity remains to be seen

The time has come for us to seek out a realistic way to manage our worsening problem of people living on the streets of our city and to do so in a manner that best serves our city’s entire population of 1.35 million. With this in mind, we propose the establishment of “Camp Hope San Diego” on city-owned land adjacent to Brown Field. The purpose of this camp is to safely and … [Read more...]

Orange diocese hosts homeless memorial service

The 193 homeless individuals who passed away in 2016 on the streets of Orange County due to illness, exposure or violence were remembered

It was a somber evening as the souls of 193 homeless individuals who in 2016 passed away on the streets of Orange County due to illness, exposure or violence were remembered at a pray service. Most of them did not receive a proper memorial at their passing. The Dec. 21 Homeless Persons’ Interfaith Memorial Service, held in the Arboretum at Christ Cathedral, was held on the … [Read more...]