In Philadelphia and surrounding communities, poverty remains a heartbreaking and intractable reality for far too many. One in four families in Philadelphia live in poverty—the highest rate among the 10 most populous cities in the U.S. And in communities throughout our diocese, pockets of poverty endure. Research links poverty to exposure to violent crime, inadequate access to education and health care, and increased incidence of physical and emotional traumas. Poverty also is intrinsically linked to homelessness, which is driven by the opioid epidemic, domestic violence, mental illness, young people aging out of foster care, and lack of affordable housing.

For this sacred day event, we assemble backpacks containing hats, gloves, socks, underwear, sweaters, bras/undergarments, handwarmers, etc., for the homeless.