The Social Ministry Department asks for your help identifying the needs and the barriers to a quality of life some of our neighbors face within our community and culture. The following are responses we have received and action taken to date on those questions and/or issues.
Please note, due to the nature of the questions asked and/or issues raised research may take time but the answer(s) will be posted as quickly as possible. If you have a question or issue please click HERE for submission form. All questions/answers will remain on the website for a period not longer than 3 months.
CAN YOU HELP ME FIND A LOW-COST DIVORCE ATTORNEY?
The Catholic Church maintains that a new union cannot be recognized as valid, if the first marriage was valid. "Between the baptized, 'a ratified and consummated marriage cannot be dissolved by any human power or for any reason other than death.'" (CCC #2382*) *CCC - Catechism of the Catholic Church
Advisory seminars on this subject are conducted by Catholic Charities and we are exploring the possibility of a seminar to be held at CGS. If there are no other options, the Houston Bar Association can provide low-cost divorce information.
CUTS IN THE BUDGET THAT HURT THE POOR AND THE WORKING POOR.
This is an issue that can only be resolved by involvement of parish members. Our State legislature will convene again in January 2009, and it is important to let your elected officials know your feelings toward balancing the State budget on the backs of our children and the working poor. The names and addresses of our representatives are located on the bulletin board near the Parish reception desk.
CAN YOU TELL ME MORE ABOUT MAGNIFICAT HOUSE?
We have been asked to raise our public awareness about this facility. This organization was founded to serve the most abandoned and neglected of our society - homeless persons and persons with mental illness. (Magnificat House has asked to be considered for our Lenten Project next year.) For information on how to assist this organization with their goals, please call 713-529-4231.
CAN WE PROVIDE SAFE HARBOR FOR DAY LABORERS AT THE STUEBNER-AIRLINE SITE?
Men gather daily at this site hoping to find daily work from contractors. Some contractors do not pay these day laborers or they 'short-change' them. Many solutions have been suggested but none have proved to be viable. NAM has a program called "Workforce Development" that can assist people in need of furthering their skills so as to find jobs that offer decent pay and benefits. There are no openings at this time due to Hurricane Katrina/Rita victims' assistance.
NEGATIVE MESSAGES ABOUT FAMILY STRUCTURE THAT ARE SEEN ON TELEVISION PROGRAMS.
The best approach is to advise parish members not to watch
these types of programs and to call or write letters to the TV stations and their sponsors and advise them you will boycott their stations and products. (This solution worked very well removing the program, "The Book of Daniel," from the airwaves.)
WHY IS THE ARCHDIOCESE CLOSING CATHOLIC SCHOOLS WHILE SPENDING MONIES ON CAPITAL PROJECTS?
The Archdiocese has advised us that any recent school closings were the result of low enrollment as well as lack of teachers. Each parish contributes to the Archdiocese and when donations do not meet financial needs, the shortfall impacts every phase of operations.
WHAT CAN WE DO ABOUT THE PLANS FOR THE 'GRAND PARKWAY'?
Any homeowner that might be displaced from their home for the building of public roads should be financially compensated at the fair market value for that home. Public town hall meetings are being held throughout the County so that residents can register their views on this subject. This is another area where parish members must speak out and let their views be heard by our elected officials.
WHY CAN'T WE HAVE A YOUTH MASS AT CGS?
At this time we have no plans for adding an additional Mass. This issue will continue to be addressed by our clergy and liturgical and music leaders to see if there is a possibility of having such a Mass - perhaps on a once-a-month basis.
REMOVAL OF ABORTION BILLBOARD.
Recently a billboard supporting abortion appeared on Louetta Road. It was removed by the billboard company due to many complaints. This is another example of the power of the people to rise up and speak out against messages that offend.