Bishop Ott Shelter Collection Drive

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We are pleased to announce that WGMB Fox 44, WVLA Channel 33, and their family of stations have come together for the 27th year to support our Bishop Ott Shelter Program.  They will again run an extensive collection drive for our shelters, collecting items for homeless men, women, and children.  

All these items are critical to the people who come to us with little more than the clothes they are wearing.  Things like toothbrushes, disposable razors, shaving cream, soap, and shampoo are so important to someone’s dignity and self-esteem, and without them, it’s impossible to make a good impression when you are trying to find a job. 

A list of items appears below, you can collect these items and donate them by dropping them off at the St. Vincent de Paul main charitable campus at 220 St. Vincent de Paul Place.  We’ll gladly get them to the homeless people who desperately need these items.  If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at 383-7837, extension O.

St. Vincent de Paul/Bishop Ott Shelter most needed items:blankets; disposable diapers; men, women and children’s underwear; socks; knit caps; gloves; scarves; reading glasses (all strengths); slippers; towels and washcloths; toiletry items such as deodorant, soap, shampoo, body wash, lotion, and body powder; twin & crib size sheets; paper products (napkins, paper towels, toilet paper); disposable cups, plates, bowls, knives, forks, and spoons; and rain gear.

Join Us Again in This Great Community Effort!

It’s hard to believe that we’re in year four of the Sylvia’s Toys for Christmas effort.  Back in 2015, WBRZ’s Sylvia Weatherspoon contacted St. Vincent de Paul because she was concerned that poor and homeless children in our community might feel left out during this joyous Christmas season.  From her desire to help needy children has grown a wonderful campaign. Through this campaign, thousands of toys have been collected, and thousands of needy kids have felt the love and compassion of our community.  
 
Last year, Bishop Muench distributed over a thousand Christmas gifts to children at the St. Vincent de Paul Dining Room, and the smiles on their faces told everyone there just how important this effort is to children who have so little.  
 
On behalf of needy children in our community, we want to express our heartfelt gratitude to Sylvia Weatherspoon and WBRZ-Channel 2, as well as local Chick-fil-A restaurants who have signed up once again to help us collect toys for children in our community.  
 
Please consider donating a gift for a needy child.  You can buy a toy in the $10 to $20 range and drop it off at any St. Vincent de Paul or Chick-fil-A location (after Thanksgiving). If you’d rather make a financial contribution for the purchase of Christmas toys, you can do so by sending a check to St. Vincent de Paul at P. O. Box 127, Baton Rouge, LA 70821 or by clicking here.  Your support will help us to continue our tradition of bringing the Christmas spirit to the children in our shelters, as well as needy children throughout our community.  
 
We thank everyone who has given in the past, and we hope you will join in this year’s effort.  

Thanksgiving 2018

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In our nation, Thanksgiving originated as a harvest festival, a time of gratitude, and an opportunity to share nature’s bounty with family and friends.  On this day, no one went hungry.  So much has changed since that first Thanksgiving that our country would now be unrecognizable to those early settlers.

One thing that hasn’t changed is the need to share God’s blessings with the less fortunate.  On this special holiday, as we gather around tables filled with turkey and dressing, our favorite casseroles, and mouth-watering desserts, most of us will begin the meal with a blessing.  In that prayer, we hope you will remember the poor and homeless men, women, and children who will be coming to St. Vincent de Paul for their Thanksgiving meal.

On November 22nd, our volunteers will serve turkey with all the trimmings to hundreds of people who, unfortunately, have little to celebrate.  Many of them are living in homes where people have to skip meals or eat less to make ends meet.  Some of them have no homes.  But on this day, they will all have a warm place to go and plenty to eat.

This year, our volunteers will be serving up a Thanksgiving meal at our Dining Room and will continue the Holiday Helpers’ tradition at the Raising Cane’s River Center.  We will come together to ensure everyone in our community has a place to turn to on Thanksgiving Day, as well as everyday of the year.  Sometimes, we are overwhelmed by the number of people who turn to St. Vincent de Paul for the nourishment they need.  But these people are not numbers – they are real people in desperate need.  We see their faces; we hear their stories.  They are struggling to survive and must rely on the kindness of others to help them through this difficult time in their lives.

During the upcoming holiday season, there are many people who are wondering where their next meal is coming from.  St. Vincent de Paul is the only community kitchen that is open every day of the year, providing a hot lunch and a brown bag supper daily.  This year, we will serve over 270,000 meals.  The lines at our dining room are long, and we can only meet the need with the help of generous people like you. The meals prepared at St. Vincent de Paul are served by our volunteers with love and compassion.  Your support is needed to make these meals possible, and to put smiles on beautiful faces.

How many people can you help this holiday season?  $1.00 provides a hot meal for one hungry person. $100 provides hot meals for 100 people.  

You can make a difference in our community by giving online!

Help St. Vincent de Paul and Save on Taxes!

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Did you know that if you are 70½ years old or older, you can give up to $100,000 from your IRA directly to St. Vincent de Paul without paying income taxes on the money? Or, you can give a portion to St. Vincent de Paul just as long as you don’t exceed the $100,000 maximum. (Note: You don’t have to donate the entire IRA to be eligible for the tax benefits. And if it’s worth more than $100,000, you can transfer a portion of it to fund a charitable gift.)  

  • You’ll pay no income taxes on your gift.  The transfer does not generate taxable income or a tax deduction, so you’ll benefit even if you don’t itemize your deductions. 

  • If you haven’t taken your required minimum distribution this year, your IRA charitable rollover gift can satisfy all or part of that requirement

  • If your spouse is 70 ½ years old or older, he or she can also give up to $100,000 from his or her IRA.

If you have more than one retirement account where some are pensions and some are IRAs, keep in mind that direct rollovers to a qualified charity can be made only from an IRA.  Under certain circumstances, you may be able to roll assets from a pension, profit sharing, 401(k) or 403(b) plan into an IRA and then make the transfer from the IRA directly to St. Vincent de Paul.  (Speak with your plan administrator about this.) If you have questions or need more information, please contact Michael Acaldo at macaldo@svdpbr.comor call (225) 383-7837, ext. O.  And remember, always consult with a tax professional before you make a gift of this nature.

"Thank God for St. Vincent de Paul"

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Not just at Thanksgiving, but throughout the year, we hear, “Thank God for St. Vincent de Paul.” Whether we’re helping a single homeless woman, a mother and her young child, a man who just lost his job, or an elderly person – the work of St. Vincent de Paul is making a real difference in someone’s life every day of the year.

Our Dining Room is often the first place someone comes to for assistance, and it’s surprising how much the demand has grown through the years. We continue to serve more meals than all the other local soup kitchens and dining rooms combined. Back around 2001, we broke the 100,000 meal mark; last year, we had an all-time record of 266,836 meals; and this year, we expect to serve at least 270,000 meals.

Many of the people who come to our Dining Room need a hot meal before they can think about taking the next step, and once they have eaten, they begin to ask questions like, “Do you know where I can find a place to stay? Can someone help me find a job?” These are the people that come to us for help.

Our philosophy of giving a hand-up of hope continues to be the cornerstone of our organization. For those who are homeless, our top priority is getting them off the streets and into our Bishop Ott Shelter Program where we can help them get back on their feet.

Many of those we serve are living in homes where people have to skip meals or eat less to make ends meet. But on Thanksgiving Day, they will all have a warm place to go and plenty to eat. This year, our volunteers will be serving up a Thanksgiving meal at our Dining Room and will continue the St. Vincent de Paul Holiday Helpers’ tradition at the Raising Cane’s River Center.

For our Holiday Helpers efforts, we thank Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome; Constable Reginald Brown; Raising Cane River Center General Manager Michael Day; Director of Sales, Marketing & Events Rhonda Ruffino; Chef James Hillary and the entire crew at the River Center. These community leaders are outstanding, and we thank them for helping St. Vincent de Paul keep the Holiday Helpers’ tradition alive in our Capital Region.

Again this year, we want to thank the Congregation B’nai Israel for doing their annual Turkey Train, collecting enough turkeys to ensure that we can continue this Thanksgiving tradition. Annually, the synagogue is the single largest contributor of turkeys for our Thanksgiving meal service to the poor. Their help is even more critical this year because of the growing need in our community.

At St. Vincent de Paul, the most critical ingredient in our Thanksgiving recipe is you – our supporters – who make our work possible. Our needy guests are so grateful for the meals you make possible. It’s amazing to look around and see what can be accomplished through the generosity of so many people throughout our community. This Thanksgiving, we say, “Thank God for you and all you’ve done for those who need a helping hand.”

If you haven’t supported our St. Vincent de Paul Dining Room in the past, we invite you to become a part of this important ministry. Please consider supporting our Dining Room by giving a Thanksgiving gift. For $1.00 we can provide a hot meal; $100 provides 100 meals; and $400 will feed all our Dining Room guests for a day. Make your gift online by clicking here or by mailing a check to the St. Vincent de Paul Dining Room, P.O. Box 127, Baton Rouge, LA 70821. Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Chapel on Our Campus - Project Making Progress

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Our St. Louise de Marillac Chapel project received a wonderful gift from the Irene W. and C.B. Pennington Family Foundation. This significant contribution, along with other generous donations brings us to $208,650 raised. Our total project budget is $350,000.  We also want to recognize Kathy Bishop who gave a very generous gift to get this effort from a possibility to a soon-to-be reality. These wonderful major contributors to this project are examples that we all can follow, and every dollar counts. We thank all those who have made gifts to this project that have propelled us to this new total.  Thank you all!  

The Chapel is named in honor of St. Louise de Marillacwho worked with St. Vincent de Paul in his ministry of serving those most in need.She was the founder of the Daughters of Charity who are now known worldwide for their work in healthcare.  In St. Vincent de Paul’s time, they were known for running hospitals, clinics and orphanages.  These women were leaders, and in the 1600’s, that was remarkable.  

St. Vincent de Paul himself had great vision and recognized the important role women play in our world.  He realized that women had much to offer, and he saw them as equals to men. St. Louise de Marillac was canonized by Pope Pius XI in 1934 and was declared the patroness of social workers in 1960.  She serves as a great example for both men and women to follow.  

Our chapel will be a place where guests and volunteers who need a quiet place to pray have an opportunity to come closer to God. A place to pray and reflect can give our needy guests the spiritual strength they need to get through a difficult time in their lives.Our volunteers will also be able to utilize the chapel as a place to meditate and pray, enhancing the faith-filled experience we want them to have here at St. Vincent de Paul as they serve God’s poor.  

During the upcoming holiday season, please consider contributing to this project so that we can provide a designated place for prayer and spiritual reflection for our volunteers and the needy we are blessed to serve.   If you have been thinking of making a major gift, this might be the project you are looking for.  If you would like more information, contact Michael Acaldo at (225) 383-7837, ext. 0, or at macaldo@svdpbr.com.  If you would like to make a financial gift, please feel free to give online by clicking here

30th Anniversary!

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The Society of St. Vincent de Paul is delighted to partner again with WBRZ-Channel 2 and Pat’s Coats for Kids. Our Essential Needs Distribution Center is playing a key role in this effort. We will collect all gently used coats that are donated, organize them, and make sure they go to children who would otherwise suffer from the cold this winter. Needy children will be so grateful for the warmth provided by these coats. We ask you to keep this effort and the needy children we serve in your thoughts and prayers. For more information go to WBRZ.com.



Remember Us on Giving Tuesday!

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Don’t forget to give to St. Vincent de Paul on Giving Tuesday!  There are several different ways you can give to St. Vincent de Paul.  You can do it the old fashioned way, and write a check and send it to: St. Vincent de Paul, P.O. Box 127, Baton Rouge, LA 70821 or by clicking here.

You can also give through #iGiveCatholic.  It’s a great way to help us in our mission of serving the poor and homeless.  Our work is built on Christ’s message of love for all of God’s children, and iGiveCatholic.org is built on that foundation.  Give to St. Vincent de Paul on Giving Tuesday, November 27th, and make a real difference in our community!

Thanksgiving Efforts Gearing Up!

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On Thanksgiving Day, our volunteers will serve turkey with all the trimmings to hundreds of people who, unfortunately, have little to celebrate. Many of them are living in homes where people have to skip meals or eat less to make ends meet.  Some of them have no homes.  But on this day, they will all have a warm place to go and plenty to eat. 

This year, our volunteers will be serving up a Thanksgiving meal at our Dining Room and will continue the Holiday Helpers’ tradition at the River Center. 

Sometimes, we are overwhelmed by the number of people who turn to St. Vincent de Paul for the nourishment they need.  But these people are not numbers – they are real people in desperate need.  We see their faces; we hear their stories.  They are struggling to survive and must rely on the kindness of others to help them through this difficult time in their lives.

We are gearing up right now for this effort, and we are collecting donations of stuffing mix, canned green beans, canned yams, cakes, pies, white & brown sugar, cinnamon, cranberry sauce, hams, and 2-liter drinks. 

The meals prepared are served by our volunteers with love and compassion.  Your financial support is also needed to make these meals possible. Send your contribution to St. Vincent de Paul’s Thanksgiving Efforts, P.O. Box 127, Baton Rouge, LA 70821 or give online at by clicking here

Annual St. Vincent de Paul Celebration

On September 25th, at Our Lady of Mercy Catholic Church, Bishop Michael Duca and many of our Vincentian Conference volunteers gathered to celebrate another year of dedicated Vincentian service in our community. At the Mass, Bishop Duca recognized a number of Vincentians who have distinguished themselves through their ministry to the needy. Along with Bishop Duca, St. Vincent de Paul Council President Crystal Chatelain presented awards to some of our outstanding volunteers.

The first award of the night was the 25th Anniversary Award, which was given to Mrs. Louise Prosser. Mrs. Prosser has been a member of the St. Vincent de Paul group at Our Lady of Mercy for over 25 years. During those years, she has given of her time and her effort, serving God’s poor in a remarkable way. Our Lady of Mercy is a wonderful parish with wonderful people making a difference in the lives of those in need. We thank Mrs. Prosser and also Father Cleo Milano for his support of St. Vincent de Paul’s work throughout the Diocese.

Our next award of the night was the Be a Light Award, named in honor of Bishop Ott who said, “If I have been a light in some small way, then all of us can be a light.” We recognized Mr. A. C. Monin for being a light by providing meals for 28 years to the homeless at the Bishop Ott Shelters. Mr. Monin was unable to attend the event, and Crystal Chatelain accepted the award on his behalf.

Saints Cosmas and Damian are the patron saints of pharmacists and this was the next award to be presented. Our community pharmacy continues to serve people in need of prescription medicine, and we are only able to do so because of the dedication of our volunteers. Ms. Theresa Hollins was presented the Saints Cosmas & Damian Award for her 23 years of volunteering at our pharmacy. Ms. Hollins has done a phenomenal job of making a difference in the lives of people who are sick and suffering.

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Our next award was the St. Vincent de Paul Stores Community Volunteer Award. Every year, our St. Vincent de Paul stores help thousands of needy individuals and families with much needed items such as clothing, furniture, and other household necessities – all free of charge. Our efforts also raise financial resources for our charitable programs through a very successful car donation program, which will raise over $100,000 this year. On this special night, we recognized Mr. Jack Snee, a St. Vincent de Paul Conference Vincentian from St. Patrick Church, for his outstanding volunteer work in helping us to raise these critical funds. Jack has played a vital role in our mission of charity and, because of his efforts, we have been able to feed thousands, provide thousands of guest nights of shelter, and fill prescriptions for those in need.

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Our St. Vincent de Paul Dining Room is on track to serve over 270,000 meals this year. Because of the outstanding work of our Dining Room volunteers, we are making a difference in our community. This year’s Heaven’s Helpers Award was given to Mr. Anthony Bacile for his community volunteerism at our St. Vincent de Paul Dining Room. We rely on dedicated volunteers like Mr. Bacile to provide this critical service 365 days a year.

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The final award of the night was our St. Vincent de Paul Top Hat Award. The name of this award comes from Frederic Ozanam, who founded the Society in 1833 as he visited the poor in his top hat. This is the highest award that can be given by St. Vincent de Paul for exemplary service. This year’s Top Hat Award recipient was Mr. Kevin Patterson. Through his outstanding Vincentian volunteerism, Kevin established the St. Benedict the Moor St. Vincent de Paul Conference. He also plays a critical role in our Diocesan Council leadership. Kevin currently serves as Secretary of our St. Vincent de Paul special works Board of Directors. His commitment to serving God’s poor as a Vincentian has truly made an impact in our community. He is a long time Vincentian who joins many other exemplary Vincentians in our Top Hat Hall of Fame.

My Bicycle Journey

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As many of you know, Major Reginald R. Brown, Sr. has been a community hero for many years. He is a retired East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office Deputy of 25 years and is presently the Baton Rouge City Constable. He has received many awards throughout his career, including the Golden Deeds Award and the Southern University Trailblazer Award. Our local Holiday Helpers was the brainchild of Constable Brown and a group of volunteers who cared about bringing our community together in a positive way. For 30 years before passing the Holiday Helpers torch on to St. Vincent de Paul, Constable Brown made sure that this annual event provided a traditional Thanksgiving meal to the needy. He’s also a leader in the annual Christmas Crusade, which collects toys for needy children. He is a member of the St. Vincent de Paul Board of Directors. The list of his accomplishments could go on and on, but it’s obvious that his life has been one of service to others.

Constable Brown has now written a book about his life, entitled, “My Bicycle Journey,” with proceeds from sales of the book going to the Society of St. Vincent de Paul. Books are available for purchase at St. Vincent de Paul, as well as online by clicking here.

On November 11th, from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m., there will be a special book signing at the St. Joseph Cathedral Parish Hall, 412 North Street, Baton Rouge. All are invited to attend. We encourage everyone to support St. Vincent de Paul by purchasing this wonderful book.

#iGiveCatholic #GivingTuesday - November 27, 2018

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Thank you for being a part of the St. Vincent de Paul Family! We’re excited to announce that we are participating in #iGiveCatholic on #GivingTuesday, our nation’s first-ever day of giving! This year it will be November 27 from 12:00 AM to 11:59 PM CST. Your generous support makes a meaningful difference by assisting the needy in our community. As you know, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul is changing lives every day by giving a helping hand-up to the most vulnerable members in the Greater Baton Rouge Community. On November 27 (#iGiveCatholic Giving Day), your financial gift will help us receive extra funds for our work in the community. By visiting iGiveCatholic.org, you can make a difference with your gift to St. Vincent de Paul. 

All gifts you make to the Society of St. Vincent de Paul on November 27 will increase our impact by allowing us to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, provide shelter to the homeless, and provide life sustaining medication to those in need. With your help, we WILL reach our fundraising goal on the #iGiveCatholic Giving Day! 

By visiting iGiveCatholic.org, you can make a difference with your gift to St. Vincent de Paul. 

Follow us on Facebook/Twitter/Instagram @svdpbatonrouge, so you can share in the excitement on #GivingTuesday, November 27. 

Yours in Christ, 

Michael J. Acaldo, SVDP President & CEO

Sweet Dreams - It's Not Too Late!

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With the continued support of our generous St. Vincent de Paul Family, we are making dreams come true every day for homeless children. Our Bishop Ott Sweet Dreams Shelter provides a cozy home, soft beds, and nourishing meals that homeless children dream about. We provide a safe haven in their time of need, and provide them with the necessary time needed for adults to get back on their feet so they can take care of themselves and their families.

If we all work together, dreams can come true; but we know it takes a lot more than hard work and financial support to make this vision a reality. Please continue your prayers, our Sweet Dreams Shelter is so important to people who have nowhere else to turn.

We thank you for your ongoing support and hope you will continue supporting us now. If you are able to give, you can do so online by
clicking here.  
 
We would like to express our most heartfelt gratitude to you and to everyone who shared our concern for the homeless in our community.

Bishop Ott Sweet Dreams Shelter.

Can you imagine what a homeless child would dream about if they had to sleep in a car tonight? Would they dream of a cozy place with soft beds and fluffy blankets, where there are three good meals a day and no one goes hungry? Or would they dream of scary things that lurk in the dark just outside the windows? We know what homeless parents dream about: a better future, a safe place to stay until they can find a job, save money, and start over. 
 
At St. Vincent de Paul, our Sweet Dreams Shelter is making dreams come true every day for homeless children like those in the pictures above.  With your support, we make big dreams, little dreams, and everything in between come true. We provide the cozy home, the nourishing meals, and the soft beds that homeless children dream about.  But just as important, we provide the safe haven and the time they need for adults to get back on their feet so they can take care of themselves and their families. 
 
In 2001, a long-awaited St. Vincent de Paul dream came true when we opened our Sweet Dreams Shelter for women and children.  That dream grew over the past year as we expanded this facility, increasing our bed capacity from 36 to 82.  This means that, in addition to homeless women and children, we can now accept intact families and single-parent families headed by fathers.
 
This newly expanded facility is proof that, when people work together, dreams can come true; but, we know it took a lot more than hard work and financial support to make this vision a reality.  Thousands of prayers laid the foundation for this effort long before the first concrete was poured.  So, please keep praying!  Our Sweet Dreams Shelter is so important to people who have nowhere else to turn.
  
We thank you for your past support and hope you will continue your support now that we have greatly expanded our efforts to help homeless women, children, and families.  Our first request to you is to pray for the homeless we serve.  With our expansion, we also need your financial support more than ever, so please consider making a gift to our Sweet Dreams Shelter.  If you are able to give you can do so by clicking here.  
 
On behalf of the homeless children, women and families we serve, I want to express my heartfelt gratitude to you and to everyone who shares our concern for the homeless in our community.  The children and mothers in these pictures are just a few of the thousands of people whose lives have been changed through our Sweet Dreams Shelter because of your support.  Thank you!
 


Sincerely yours in Christ,
 
Michael J. Acaldo
President & CEO

Donald J. Broussard - A Visionary Leader

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      We lost a beloved member of our St. Vincent de Paul family recently, a man who was very dear to everyone who had the privilege of knowing him. Since the publication of our last Vincentian Charities newsletter, Donald J. Broussard went to his rest in heaven. Those of us who knew Don personally were fortunate indeed, but the cost of that friendship is the grief we feel at his passing. There is no way to measure the depth of our loss or the impact of his absence.

      Don was a humble, soft-spoken man, whose strength and leadership were demonstrated through his words and actions. He lived his faith and led by example. He held so many important positions with our local Society of St. Vincent de Paul and played a critical role in the Society’s growth over the last three decades. Over the years, he was Chairman of our special works Board of Directors and a member of our Executive Committee. He was the first Chairman of the St. Vincent de Paul Foundation and was still the Chairman at the date of his passing. He was the founder of the St. Thomas More St. Vincent de Paul Conference. He was a leader in every St. Vincent de Paul capital campaign, playing a critical role in turning visions into realities. Services that were once nothing more than dreams – a community pharmacy, a new dining room, homeless shelters – materialized because of Don’s commitment to our mission of serving God’s poor.

      These are extraordinary accomplishments, but Don wasn’t only involved in big things; he loved to do the “little” things as well. Whether it was helping the Bishop with our annual Christmas gift distribution to needy children, serving homecooked meals to our shelter guests, or making home visits to the poor, nothing was unimportant in his service to others. 

      Don was also a member of the St. Vincent de Paul Top Hat Hall of Fame. This is our most prestigious honor, which is bestowed in recognition of those who go far beyond the call of duty in answer to the call of Christ. 

      So many people have expressed their sorrow at the passing of such a good man. Michael Acaldo said, “Don’s faith was strong, and he believed that everything he did made a difference. Through his work with St. Vincent de Paul, he made a difference in the lives of those who worked alongside him, but also in the lives of thousands of strangers, people he didn’t know and would never meet. He left behind a huge circle of family and friends, but also a legacy of kindness, compassion, and generosity. He served as a model for others to follow.

Thank You Bishop Muench!

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      As I began writing this article, the official announcement had just been made regarding the appointment of Bishop Michael Duca as the sixth Bishop of the Diocese of Baton Rouge. We welcome our new Bishop and are excited about working with him in the future. He will be following in the footsteps of some of the most dedicated and devout men I have ever known. In my time at St. Vincent de Paul, our Bishops have been Bishop Stanley J. Ott, followed by Archbishop Alfred C. Hughes, and then Bishop Robert W. Muench. What a blessing it’s been to have known these men personally. 
      Before he retires, I want to take one last opportunity to thank Bishop Muench for everything he has done to make our community a better place, but most of all, for his spiritual leadership of our Diocese and our local Society of St. Vincent de Paul. There are no words to express my respect and admiration for this extraordinary and unassuming man. 
      As many of you know, Bishop Muench’s father, William Anthony Muench, was a Vincentian in the Archdiocese of New Orleans for nearly 70 years, sharing his time, talent, and treasure in support of the mission of St. Vincent de Paul. His concern for the needy was just one facet of a man who loved Christ and was committed to his faith.

     What a gift it is for a child to grow up in a faith-filled home. In rare instances, the result is someone like Bishop Robert Muench, a son who not only lives his faith, but dedicates his life to Christ and the Church. Both William Muench and his son, Bishop Robert Muench, were inducted into St. Vincent de Paul’s Top Hat Hall of Fame in 2010. 
      For 16 years, Bishop Muench has helped St. Vincent de Paul navigate the challenges of serving God’s poor in our community. His support and guidance have been invaluable. He’s always interested in our work, and he frequently asks, “What’s next?” He wants to know about our current vision, our most recent success, and the next project. I am so grateful that he shares our concern for the needy, and I can’t thank him enough for his confidence in our local Society. 
      Many of our visions have become realities during the years that Bishop Muench has been a shepherd to us and our community. The need has grown, and at St. Vincent de Paul, we’ve done our best to meet the need. Last year, we served over 266,000 meals, filled prescriptions worth more than a million dollars, and provided over 27,000 guest nights of shelter. We just completed and opened the expansion of our Sweet Dreams Shelter, and we hope to break ground on a new Day Center/Emergency Shelter in the coming months. Our next vision is to build a chapel on our main campus.
      Through his support of our efforts, Bishop Muench has exemplified the Gospel message of love and compassion, as well as faith in action. He has played such an important role in our visions and accomplishments, and we are forever grateful for his direction, counsel and encouragement.

-- Michael J. Acaldo - President & CEO, St. Vincent de Paul