The purpose of the Social Ministry Committee is to identify and change systems that perpetuate poverty and injustice. Currently we are focusing on the St. Joseph area. In 2013 we joined other local faith communities in an effort started by the Central Minnesota Catholic Worker group to determine whether there is poverty in St. Joseph. We found 1/3 of Kennedy Grade School students receive subsidized lunches, 70-75 families use the St. Joseph Food Shelf each month, and many people live in one of St. Joseph’s 3 subsidized apartment buildings.
Our faith community coalition is working to create opportunities to meet and serve the needy in our area. We want them to get comfortable enough with us to tell us how we can best help them to improve their situations. Beginning in January 2014 we provide a free community meal at the St. Joseph Legion the 4th Sunday of the month, 11:30 – 1 pm, free lunch and an activity at local parks 4 days a week during the summer for children, and we support Fare for All, a discounted groceries program at Resurrection Lutheran.
In 2015 we are working to formalize our coalition, which we are calling The Partnership for People. We are recruiting board members, drafting by-laws and preparing to file for 501 c 3 non-profit status. Jim Parsons and Jeanie Wilkens of our congregation represent our congregation on the Board.