Catholic Relief Services: Solidarity

Because the work of promoting peace, protecting life and ensuring justice is integral to our faith, this work is shared by several programs and offices in the Diocese of Arlington that act as resources to parishes and individuals.

“Fear needs to be replaced by hope so that all people can live in freedom and peace. The outcome of the referenda should not be seen as a threat to either side, but an opportunity . . . . We, as children of God, extend our hands to our Muslim brothers and sisters in Sudan in a spirit of peace and reconciliation. . . . We call upon all people of good will to leave behind mistrust and hatred and move to a new life of justice, peace, love and reconciliation.”

—The Sudan Catholic Bishops Conference, November 14. 2010

As Catholics, we believe we are all part of one human family. We are called to protect the life and dignity of every member of that family. Solidarity is a basic concept in Catholic teaching that asks us to stand with those who are poor and assist people in need around the world.

The Diocese of Arlington CRS Office fosters solidarity with those in poverty overseas by educating parishioners about the work of CRS and how it relates to Catholic Social Teaching. We help our parishes connect to programs offered by the national office, such as:


While 75 percent of the money donated to Operation Rice Bowl funds CRS programs overseas, 25 perfect stays here to fund food pantries and other direct assistance in the Diocese of Arlington.


Fair Trade

"All economic life should be shaped by moral principles. Economic choices and institutions must be judged by how they protect or undermine the life and dignity of the human person, support the family, and serve the common good."

A Catholic Framework for Economic Life United States Catholic Conference, 1996

Fair Trade is a people-powered system of exchange that honors and respects producers, consumers, communities, the environment and the world as a whole. A system in conformity with Catholic Social Teaching principles, Fair Trade helps ensure that people along every step of the supply chain receive fair wages, that workers and communities are treated with dignity, that artisans’ and producers’ businesses are allowed to become sustainable, and that preserving the environment is made a priority.

Catholic Relief Services is a strong supporter of Fair Trade and provides training to individuals who are interested in promoting this partnership with the poor.


Fair Trade Ambassadors

The Diocese of Arlington has Fair Trade Ambassadors are available to assist you in bringing Fair Trade awareness to, or growing it in, your parish, neighborhood or school.

Just Faith graduates, social justice committees, youth ministers, catechists, teachers and other interested parishioners are encouraged to contact our Ambassadors to find out more about holding parish and school fundraisers with Fair Trade items, serving Fair Trade coffee at meetings and events, and helping in other ways to enable growers and artisans around the world to support their families with dignity. Find out how to support this important movement that lifts people out of poverty and advances solidarity.

The Arlington Diocese is fortunate to have CRS-trained Fair Trade Ambassadors. Please contact the office at our contact information below.


The CRS/CCHD Diocesan Committee

A group of more than 20 committed individuals from around the Diocese serves on the Diocesan Committee for CRS and CCHD. The Committee promotes CRS programs and works with the Diocesan Coordinator to review applications for Operation Rice Bowl funding from groups and projects located in the Diocese. It then makes funding recommendations to Bishop Burbidge.

Yasha Arant
Christ the Redeemer Parish, Sterling  

Claudia Brown
St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish, Lake Ridge  

Susan Conrad
St. Leo the Great Parish, Fairfax

Kellen M. MacBeth
St. Agnes Parish, Arlington

Sheila McCarron
St. Bernadette Parish, Springfield  

Adrienne Wilks Miller
Christ the Redeemer Parish, Sterling

Carole Schloss
St. Anthony of Padua Parish, Falls Church

Samuel P. Starr
St. James Parish, Falls Church

Adrienne Wilks Miller
Christ the Redeemer Parish, Sterling

Ex-officio Member:
Carla Walsh
Program Director, CRS/CCHD
Church of the Nativity, Burke