“If you have come here to help me, you are wasting your time. But if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together.” – Lilla Watson
Welcome to the Outreach Programs of the Church of St. Francis Xavier! We hope you will find this information useful, whether you need to access services, are looking to volunteer, or want to donate to our outreach efforts. Thank you for visiting and we look forward to seeing you soon!
EMPLOYMENT SUPPORT GROUP
The Employment Support Group is an outreach ministry, which supports participants in all aspects of employment — where you are now and where you want to be in your career. At our monthly meetings, we discuss topics of interest such as strategies for job searches, review of resumes and cover letters, and networking techniques. Participants empower each other by sharing their experiences and expertise. It is through this sharing that we are modeled on Ignatian Spirituality. When appropriate, tip sheets provide a springboard for the group’s discussions and serve as a resource for participants between meetings. Our ministry is not just for those looking for a job; we encourage attendees who are currently working to come and relate their experiences in finding a job. We also share valuable job leads and other helpful information periodically to our email list of over 70 members including parishioners, non-parishioners, Catholics, and those of other faiths. For more information, please contact Katherine at firstname.lastname@example.org
The St. Francis Xavier Environment Ministry promotes care for God’s creation – the human community as well as animal and plant life – through environmental education, advocacy, and sustainability projects.
Pope Francis’s encyclical Laudato Si’ declares a responsibility to care for “our common home” and to realize our oneness with climate, the creatures of the earth, and our moral use of it. Because of human degradation of nature, he declares it is now an aspect of social justice. We at St Francis Xavier engage in prayer and action to address environmental justice, pollution prevention, species preservation and the exploration of new technologies for clean energy. As individual parishioners and a parish community, we educate one another and model sustainable living practices, offering hope and inspiration to others.
Recent education programs include an environmental film series and special guest speakers. Advocacy efforts include organized campaigns to contact elected officials about pending environmental legislation at the federal, state and New York City levels. As a group, we participate in environmental rallies. As a parish, we actively celebrate Earth Day (April 22) and the Season of Creation (Sept 1-Oct 4). See the parish calendar for related events throughout the year.
We partner with Metro New York Catholic Climate Movement, a chapter of Global Catholic Climate Movement, Catholic Climate Covenant, GreenFaith and Interfaith Power and Light. We also work with our brothers and sisters of other faith traditions to collectively raise our voices for our common concerns.
HONDURAS COMPANION COMMUNITIES PROJECT
For 20 years we have maintained relationships with several local grass-root groups in Honduras. We provide partial scholarships to secondary school students in two locations and subsequent support to some who go on to a university or other advanced school. We also assist with the expenses of an orphanage of children who are HIV+. Groups from Xavier have often traveled to Honduras to meet with the students, the people who manage the scholarships, and also the children at the orphanage. Contact Brian Hotaling at email@example.com
The Xavier Immigration Initiative supports our undocumented sisters and brothers through accompaniment, advocacy and education. We offer multiple opportunities for getting involved, and all are welcome to join our efforts on behalf of immigrants and refugees.
Partnering with the New Sanctuary Coalition (NSC), we host weekly gatherings for undocumented friends on Thursday evenings in Hurtado Hall. Friends gather for support, fellowship and education in a variety of practical skills (e.g. yoga or finance). If you have a life skill to share with this community, or are interested in helping with snacks, set-up or clean up, please contact us at the email below.
Members who complete accompaniment training through the NSC also offer their presence and support to friends facing immigration court hearings, ICE check-ins, or other official appointments. We stand in solidarity with our undocumented friends and their friends and family members, as they face the harsh reality of our broken immigration system.
We also partner with First Friends of NJ/NY in their support of undocumented friends being held in detention in Elizabeth, NJ. Through regular visits to the detention center, we offer a compassionate presence and an affirmation of human dignity to individuals caught up in a dehumanizing system.
If you are interested in getting involved, or learning more about supporting immigrant rights, please contact Linda Chavez and Sebastian Gamez, the leaders of the Xavier Immigration Initiative, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pope Francis in his exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel), proclaims that “interreligious dialogue is a necessary condition for peace in the world”. Therefore, the mission of the Xavier Interfaith Committee is to instill in our parishioners a deep commitment to peace.
To this end the Committee provides opportunities for spiritual fellowship with Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist and other religious traditions to create bonds of friendship and mutual understanding. It sponsors events that stimulates spiritual inquiry and education and encourages open religious discussion and inquiry.
In ways large and small, the Interfaith Committee aims to foster respect for religious differences. In all its activities, it strives to promote love, harmony and understanding among peoples of various faiths. Only in this atmosphere will peace reign.
For further information contact Xavierinterfaith@gmail.com.
Ignatian Volunteer Corps
Join IVC to strengthen our social service providers during these challenging times.
Through the Ignatian Volunteer Corps, hundreds of people are choosing to put their life experience, skills and wisdom into service for others.
Rooted in the love of Christ, the Ignatian Volunteer Corps provides people, most age 50 or better, opportunities to serve others and transform lives. IVC matches the talents and skills of experienced adults with the greatest social needs of our time. IVC works in partnership with community partner organizations. IVC Service Corps Members serve individuals, families and organizations in need. There are also opportunities to serve from home.
IVC Service Corps members are strengthened in their faith by meetings and spiritual reflection programs rooted in the Jesuit tradition of Ignatian Spirituality. Contact Maureen Fullam, Regional Director: 917-859-0928, email@example.com – visit our website: www.ivcusa.org
PEACE AND JUSTICE COMMITTEE
The Peace and Justice Committee seeks to proclaim the living Gospel, examining root causes of injustice and working for a more just and sustainable world. Our focus is two-fold:
- Education: raising awareness of important issues and providing information to educate parishioners about the story behind the issue – the root causes of unjust situations – and ways they can be challenged.
- Advocacy: providing opportunities for action to address root causes, whether by making a public statement, signing a petition, writing a letter or op-ed, joining a demonstration or contacting elected and policy officials.
Meetings and programs – often in the Mary Chapel after 11:30 Mass – are scheduled monthly from September thru May and are announced via Peace and Justice email list and in the Sunday Bulletin. One or two meetings occur during the summer – dates, times and locations TBD.
For more information or to be added to the email list, contact chair Tracey Tynan at firstname.lastname@example.org.
HOLY COMMUNION MINISTRY FOR THE SICK AND HOMEBOUND
Xavier’s Holy Communion Ministers for the Sick and Homebound administer communion to parishioners in their apartments, but also may visit them in hospitals, nursing homes, and extended care facilities in our locality.
We help Xavier to meet the needs of our large parish which has only two full-time priests and a small, pastoral staff.
To arrange visits or to become a Eucharistic Minister to the Sick and Homebound, please contact Nick Grimaldi at email@example.com.
To arrange for the Sacraments of Reconciliation and/or Anointing of the Sick, please call the parish office.
Xavier Mission is the 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that was born from the outreach programs of the Church of St. Francis Xavier. The roots of social justice at Xavier date back to early Jesuit outreach efforts to mid-19th century immigrants on New York’s Lower East Side. In the early 1980s during the recession, concerned parishioners of the Church began providing food and shelter in response to the plight of their fellow New Yorkers. Today our six programs operate collectively as Xavier Mission Inc., a multi-service community outreach organization housed at the Church of St. Francis Xavier.
Please visit our website at www.xaviermission.org for all information regarding Xavier Mission and our programs, projects, volunteering, and donating.