Thomas Merton Family Center

Bridgeport (Greater Bridgeport area)

The Thomas Merton Family Center is committed to providing a loving, safe and hope-filled community atmosphere that responds to the needs of its guests. Respecting the dignity of each person, we reflect to the individual and the community our shared responsibility to love and support one another. We believe the sharing of a hot meal is an invitation to come in and share in a place where one can belong; respect and love are mutually given and received; each person is valued and not to be judged; and healing life’s hurts is possible with people who care. Collaboration with other agencies and people is essential to meeting the needs of those we serve.


  • Meal Program: We serve about 350 meals every day for breakfast and lunch.
  • Shower Program: Our showers are open to guests twice a week.
  • Mail Program: This program provides an address for guests to receive Social Security, Medical Cards, and EBT Cards.
  • Eat Smart Marketplace: The Eat Smart Marketplace is our Food Pantry that provides 5 days of nutritious meals every week!
  • Case Management: Case managers provide individual assistance and partner with other agencies based on guests’ needs.


Stay tuned for upcoming events!

Who to Contact

Main: (203) 367-9036
Fax: (203) 367-8828
Director, Bill Colson
Operations Manager, Sabine Kuczo


1406 State Street
Bridgeport, CT 06605

Office Hours

8:30 AM – 3:00 PM

Dining Hall Hours

Monday – Friday
8:30 AM – 1:00 PM

Eat Smart Food Pantry Coordinator

Service Hours

Monday – Friday:
Breakfast: 9:00 am to 10:00 am
Lunch: 11:30 am – 1:00 pm

Tuesday, Thursday:
Shower Program

Eat Smart Food Pantry Schedule

The Thomas Merton Family Center Food Pantry will be open for shopping on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays.

Under the new schedule, we will be dividing shopping days by last name. Each family will still shop just once a month. To find yourshopping day, please see the chart below:
TUESDAYS: Last names beginning with A, B, C, D, E, F, G
WEDNESDAYS: Last names beginning with H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P
THURSDAYS: Last names beginning with Q, R, S, T, U, V, W, X, Y, Z

The pantry will hold open registration for new families every Monday from 10 am to 1 pm. We will no longer require advance appointments for registration.

Thomas Merton Family Center Advisory Council

Dave Blagys

Edna Borchetta

Sheila Clancy

Lourdes Delgado

Jack Edwards

Thomas Gaudett

Louise Gidez

Mark Kelly

George Logan

Alberto Martins

Mary Ann O’Connor

Jo Toolan

Alexandros Valiantis

Stories from Thomas Merton Family Center

Watch the videos below to learn more about how Thomas Merton Family Center makes a difference in the lives of guests.

Thomas Merton Family Center's 30th Annual Celebrity Breakfast Featuring Dan Orlovsky

Celebrating 50 years of service, the Thomas Merton Family Center (TMFC) transitioned to a new facility in December 2023. Initially founded by a Sacred Heart University prayer group, TMFC has ...grown from distributing sandwiches on the streets of Bridgeport to offering a comprehensive range of services, always delivered with dignity, respect, and love.

Our services have evolved over the years to include the following:
Breakfast and lunch to over 300 guests daily
Case management
Healthy food pantry shopping
Showers and a mailing service for our homeless population
Largest day shelter in the region
Immigration legal services
Housing assistance

Through collaborations with other organizations, we will also be offering:
Healthcare, dental care, and mental health counseling
Job training
Classes through CT State Community College Housatonic
ESL classes
Financial literacy classes

Since relocating, our impact has grown substantially. Connie’s Eat Smart Marketplace Food Pantry program now supports triple the individuals and double the households, with a surge in new registrations. This underscores the urgency of our mission, echoing Thomas Merton's words, "Love is our true destiny. We do not find the meaning of life by ourselves alone - we find it with another."

Please follow us on social media to keep up to date with our latest news and events:
- Website:
- Facebook:
- Instagram:
- Twitter:
- LinkedIn:

Since 1916, Catholic Charities has served Fairfield County with programs that feed the hungry and homebound, shelter the homeless, strengthen families, assist with physical and mental health, and deliver consultation and assistance to immigrants. We serve all people without regard to age, race, religion, or ability to pay.

#nonprofit #charity #fundraising #volunteer #service #mentalhealth #community #immigrants #migration #support #connecticut #shelter #foodservice #soupkitchen #foodpantry #housing #help #hope #therapy #assistance #safety #family #adoption #counseling #preschool #education #humanitarian #giveback #donate
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Bridging the Gap Between Homelessness and Addiction

Bridging the Gap Between Homelessness and Addiction

Discover how Catholic Charities and Recovery Network of Program are teaming up to empower the homeless by addressing substance abuse issues. Learn about their collaborative efforts to provide resources and support for individuals in need.

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Thomas Merton Center Celebrates Fifty Years of Serving the Community

Thomas Merton Center Celebrates Fifty Years of Serving the Community

Discover the inspiring journey of the Thomas Merton House of Hospitality, from its humble beginnings in 1974 to its evolution into the largest soup kitchen and pantry in Bridgeport. Learn how this beacon of hope has provided meals, support, and community to thousands, and explore its exciting future as it expands into the Thomas Merton Family Center, offering comprehensive services to those in need.

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