World Day of the Poor 2018 Events & Volunteer Opportunities

World Day of the Poor in the Diocese

As part of the Diocese’s observance of Bishop Michael Burbidge will celebrate the 9 a.m. Mass at St. Ann Catholic Church, 5312 10th St N, Arlington. Following the Mass, he will join families who are compiling “Care Bags” intended for individuals who visit Catholic Charities programs, including the Mobile Response Center, Christ House, refugees and patients visiting the Mother of Mercy Free Medical Clinic. The family event is part of St. Ann’s World Day of the Poor community fair which will include organization who are addressing poverty in the community.

How You Can Observe World Day of the Poor

On November 18, World Day of the Poor, Pope Francis asks us to hear and respond to the cry of the poor.  As we prepare to observe World Day of the Poor, Catholic Charities is offering opportunities for parishioners to become directly involved with serving the poor, as well as attend talks that prepare us to better serve those in need. Also, consider teaming up with family or fellow parishioners to complete one of Catholic Charities’ suggested service projects listed at the bottom of this page.

  • Nov. 14, Supporting Others through Resilience Building, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. St. Joseph Catholic Church, 750 Peachtree St., Herndon. Beverly Hubble Tauke MA, MSW, LCSW will discuss resilience, a skill that can be learned, that is the ability to overcome difficult times, leave behind emotional wounds, and look toward the future. 
  • Nov. 15, Our Call to Serve, 7 p.m. Nativity Catholic Church, 6400 Nativity Lane, Burke. Sally O’Dwyer and Margot Chavez, from Catholic Charities Volunteer office, discuss how to hear and respond to God’s call to serve and how to find meaning in your life while helping others.
  • Nov. 18, St. Lucy Food Project Food Drives collection:
    • St. Veronica Catholic Church, 3460 Centreville Rd, Chantilly
    • Good Shepherd Catholic Church, 8710 Mount Vernon Hwy, Alexandria
    • St. Mary of Sorrows Catholic Church, 5222 Sideburn Rd, Fairfax
  • Nov. 18 St. Lucy Food Project Sorting and stocking, 1:30 – 6:30 p.m. (three shifts) open to volunteers who will sort and stock food contributions, St. Lucy warehouse, 8428 Kao Circle, Manassas. 

Suggested World Day of the Poor Activities

Catholic Charities, Diocese of Arlington, serves thousands of people in need using the volunteer-led service projects below. Each project is appropriate for schools, scouts, adult prayer groups, religious education classes, families, and parties. For complete details about each project, including how to conduct the project, educational and drop off information, contact our office at

  • Welcome Home Backpacks – Fill backpacks with much needed items for those leaving incarceration.  Catholic Charities provides the empty backpacks, you provide the contents. Email us for the list.
  • Care Packages – Collect and pack basic seasonal needs such as toiletries, hygiene, and laundry items. Packages are given to our Christ House clients, refugee families, Mother of Mercy Free Clinic patients, and distributed through our Mobile Response Center. Email us for the current list.
  • Pack and Stack – Food sorting, packing and unloading, for children aged 9+ with adult supervision.  Limited opportunity available on Sunday 11/18 in Manassas.
  • Sponsor a Pantry Shelf – conduct a specific food item drives based on current need (e.g. peanut butter). Email us for most needed items.
  • Clean Your Closet – Donate in-season clothing and small household items for the Christ House Thrift Shop.  The Thrift Shop provides free clothing to the homeless.
  • Prayerful Gift Bags for Seniors – Decorate and fill a bag for seniors with homemade crafts, prayers, letters, rosary, Bible, etc. Email us for directions.
  • Faithful Affirmation Jars – Pass along a little bit of kindness and brighten someone’s day through a prayer or a heartfelt compliment in a jar provided to those we serve. Email us for jar instructions.
  • Raise Awareness – Print out the message of his Holiness Pope Francis on the Second World Day of the Poor, read and share! 2018 Second World Day of the Poor Message, Pope Francis
  • Christmas is coming –  Conduct an Advent Calendar Donation drive, hold a Christmas Card Drive for the incarcerated, make Christmas Stockings for our youngest clients. Email us for instructions.


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