April 5th, 2019
Thomas Merton Center’s 25th Annual Celebrity Breakfast
April 3rd, 2019
BRIDGEPORT—Located in a former church on Madison Avenue in Bridgeport, just a few blocks from St. Augustine Cathedral, you will find a fully functioning soup kitchen that has been feeding the hungry and the homeless Monday through Saturday for the past 45 years. On May 22, 2019, The Thomas Merton Center will host its 25th Annual Celebrity Breakfast at the Holiday Inn in Bridgeport. This event has been a longtime staple to the program and has featured such “celebrity” guests as Paul Miller, Bob Wright and Chris “Mad Dog” Russo. Anticipating the excitement surrounding the Silver Anniversary of the event, the Thomas Merton Center Board decided to feature two guest speakers this year—Jim Koplik and Howard Saffan.
Jim Koplik is currently the President of Live Nation Connecticut and a concert promoter who produces over 150 shows a year. Some of his prior productions include shows by The Rolling Stones, Paul McCartney, Bruce Springsteen, REO Speedwagon, Madonna, Billy Joel, and Elton John. Howard Saffan is a developer and CEO of Amphitheater, LLC. Saffan is a co-owner of Sports Center of Connecticut and The Rinks at Shelton in Shelton, CT. He is also the former President of the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, the AHL affiliate of the New York Islanders.
The Thomas Merton Center’s mission is to provide a loving, safe and hope-filled community atmosphere, which responds to the needs of its guests. The Thomas Merton Center helps those who cannot help themselves. Guests come to the program because of their invisibility to other social services. In addition to its soup kitchen which provides both breakfast and lunch to approximately 350 people per day, the services provided by The Thomas Merton Center include: a food pantry, support groups, case management, educational assistance, a shower program, health services, and a mail program.
According to Al Barber, President of Catholic Charities, “Thomas Merton said it best, ‘We do not exist for ourselves.’ Those words reflect the efforts, energy and contributions that support The Thomas Merton Center. The 25th Annual Celebrity Breakfast significantly supports the programs annual budget to provide meals and services to the most vulnerable population in Bridgeport.”
To register for the event or sponsor a table, please visit the event webpage at www.themertoncenter.org/events. For more information, contact Sabine Kuczo at [email protected] or 203.367.9036 ext. 15.
Written by Amy Zajac
As seen on the Fairfield County Catholic Website
MEALS ON WHEELS NETWORK KICKS OFF THE 17TH ANNUAL MARCH FOR MEALS
March 5th, 2019
MONTH-LONG AWARENESS CAMPAIGN TO CELEBRATE THE POWER OF MEALS ON WHEELS AND INCREASE SUPPORT FOR AMERICA’S SENIORS
Arlington, VA, March 1, 2019 – Today marks the beginning of the 17th Annual March for Meals – a month-long, nationwide celebration of Meal on Wheels and our senior neighbors who rely on the vital service to remain health and independent at home. This annual awareness and action campaign is coordinated each year by Meals on Wheels America.
“The month of March is a fitting time to not only celebrate the successful history of Meals on Wheels, but also bring us together to support a solution that will strengthen communities into the future,” said Ellie Hollander, President and CEO of Meals on Wheels America. “With 12,000 Americans turning 60 each day, now is the time to invest in these vital programs so that we can provide every senior in need with the nutritious meals, friendly visits and safety checks that will enable them to live healthier and independent in their own homes.”
The annual March for Meals celebration commemorates the historic day in March of 1972 when President Nixon signed into law a measure that amended the Older Americans Act of 1965 to include a national nutrition program for seniors 60 years and older. Since 2002, community-based Meals on Wheels programs from across the country have joined forces for the annual awareness campaign to celebrate this successful public-private partnership and garner the support needed to fill the gap between the seniors served and those still in need.
The annual campaign gives the local businesses, organizations, governments and volunteers who contribute so generously in their communities an opportunity to support homebound seniors in a variety of ways to make America stronger and healthier. For more information, visit www.mealsonwheelsamerica.org/marchformeals.
About Meals on Wheels America
Meals on Wheels America is the leadership organization supporting the more than 5,000 community-based programs across the country that are dedicated to addressing senior isolation and hunger. This network serves virtually every community in America and, along with more than two million staff and volunteers, delivers the nutritious meals, friendly visits and safety checks that enable America’s seniors to live nourished lives with independence and dignity. By providing funding, leadership, education, research and advocacy support, Meals on Wheels America empowers its local member programs to strengthen their communities, one senior at a time. For more information, or to find a Meals on Wheels provider near you, visit www.mealsonwheelsamerica.org.
You can support Catholic Charities’ Meals on Wheels program through your donation to the Senior Nutrition Program by clicking here.
Tomorrow, Give to Catholic Charities – Fairfield Giving Day is Here!
February 27th, 2019
Giving Day is an exciting 24-hour online fundraising event to support nonprofit organizations across Fairfield County.
Sponsored by Fairfield County’s Community Foundation and Bank of America, Giving Day 2019 kicks off at the stroke of midnight. For the next 24 hours on that day, you can donate online as many times as you like to your favorite nonprofit, which we hope is Catholic Charities!
The money you donate will be used across all of our programs: New Covenant Center, Thomas Merton Center, Morning Glory Breakfast Program, Senior Nutrition Program, Room to Grow Preschool, Behavioral Health, Immigration Services and the Housing/Homeless Outreach Program. BUT, if you want your money to be designated to a specific program on Giving Day you can!!! Simply add a NOTE that the donation is “FOR (NAME OF THE PROGRAM)”. Simply click here to go to our personal online donation page.
This year, our goal is $20,000. Can you help us get there?
Order of Malta Helps Out at Thomas Merton Center
February 26th, 2019
BRIDGEPORT—Every third Saturday a community of volunteers from the Order of Malta prepares and serves a hot, hearty breakfast to guests at the Thomas Merton Center. A lay religious order of the Roman Catholic Church, the Order of Malta is dedicated to serving the sick and the poor.
The effort typically begins on Friday when members of the team stock the kitchen with ingredients for a breakfast feast. Early on Saturday 12-15 volunteers arrive to prepare the popular menu of scrambled eggs with cheese, kielbasa, pancakes, fruit and juice. Approximately 120 meals are served monthly amidst smiles and banter. To top things off, there is always a call for “seconds!”
The Thomas Merton Center is a program of Catholic Charities of Fairfield County, Inc. located in Bridgeport, Connecticut. The Thomas Merton Center is committed to providing a loving, safe and hope-filled community atmosphere that responds to the needs of its guests and residents and respects the dignity of each person. They reflect to the individual and the community our shared responsibility to love and support one another.
As seen on the Fairfield County Catholic website.