October 06, 2017
Parish Partners: St. Joseph, Garden City
Putting Faith into Action
Part of our mission at Holy Family Hospital of Bethlehem Foundation is to spread awareness of our Hospital throughout the United States. That is why we are thrilled to have the support of Catholic schools and parishes nationwide, who are championing our blessed hospital and growing in solidarity with families in the Holy Land.
You can involve your parish too! The Foundation’s Babies in Bethlehem program helps to bring families closer than ever to our mission of life, peace, and hope. Through parish-wide almsgiving and a robust religious education curriculum, dozens of parishes and schools have now adopted this faith-in-action program, each implementing it in a new, creative way.
The program is designed to be implemented in the season of Advent, with a host of resources available to highlight the connection between our Hospital and the joy of Christmas. However, many parishes choose to support Holy Family Hospital at different times of the year. To view our Advent curriculum for students, click here.
St. Joseph Catholic Church
St. Joseph Catholic Church in Garden City, NY is just one of the many communities who have decided to bring the Hospital’s mission to their parish. The church’s pastor, Msgr. James Swiader, put a unique spin on Babies in Bethlehem, launching the program during Lent after visiting Holy Family Hospital with a group of his parishioners.
Starting on Ash Wednesday, students from Kindergarten to 8th grade began learning about the Hospital in school and religious education. Every day began with a prayer for the infants at Holy Family Hospital. The parish pilgrims who visited the Hospital spoke of their experience at Sunday Masses, sparking an interest in their fellow parishioners.
“Everyone did something,” Msgr. Swiader says, “large or small.” They learned together, prayed together, and worked together all for the benefit of Bethlehem’s neediest. Going above and beyond their already generous weekly contributions, the parishioners raised an astounding $30,000 in direct support for Holy Family Hospital.
Msgr. Swiader writes, “Our parishioners started to become familiar with the Hospital and its story, it became personal to them. It was about more than an institution; it was about the mothers, fathers, and children.”
Growing in Faith
Again and again, parishes like St. Joseph’s remind us that there is no limit to the impact we can make when united with others in prayer and charity. To learn about how you can launch Babies in Bethlehem in your parish or school, please contact Jennifer McNulty, Foundation Director, at (202) 785-0801 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. To access our religious education curriculum and other program resources, click here.