St. Bernard’s has a long tradition of parishioner involvement in the creation of and participation in events for both fun and fundraising.
Activities such as our monthly breakfast gathering, monthly movie night, monthly card night, concerts, rummage sales, annual Lenten fish frys, chili cookoff, parish picnic, riverboat cruise, and train ride all bring parishioners and others together to share food, fellowship, and fun.
Monthly Breakfast Gathering – A time of fellowship with old and new friends. ALL ARE WELCOME!
B & B Riverboat cruise.
St. Bernard's famous Lenten fish fry
All of our events are open to community members and their quests. We like to think of this as social discipleship.
SOCIAL JUSTICE COMMITTEE
“Loving our neighbor means caring especially for those in need by direct service (e.g. food, shelter, medical care) and by efforts to address the causes of inequality and discrimination – through education, advocacy, and working with others on behalf of justice.”
This committee seeks to participate in Jesus’ mission to build the Kin(g)dom of God by fostering parish awareness and action rooted in the Gospel and in Catholic Social Teaching in response to urgent social issues (local, national, global). The committee provides prayer resources, education, and leadership for action on justice related priorities.
Ministry to Shut-Ins
Many of our parishioners are not able to attend liturgy. They rely on monthly visits from adult parishioners who feel called to bring the Eucharist to them in nursing homes or as they recover from illness in their own homes.
The Men's Renewal team started following a Christ Renews His Parish weekend in 2006. The men wanted to meet regularly and share the power of faith in their lives. They meet twice monthly on the second and fourth Wednesdays. Our time together includes shared song, personal prayer ntentions, shared responses to scriptures for an upcoming Sunday liturgy and discussions on experiences of God in their lives. Currently, 15 men participate.
Bible study was started by Fr. Jim Shappelle, who had a deep love for the richness of scripture. Each week the group read the scriptures for an upcoming Sunday's liturgy and discuss the effect of these readings in their lives. Currently, a group of eight meet every Tuesday morning and follows the format started by Fr. Jim, A special scripture commentary is used to broaden members’ perspective.
St. Vincent de Paul
Our work allows us to make a joyful and visible difference in people’s lives as we help them maintain stability for their families.
A recent example is M, a woman with grown children. She is proud of her son in college, her grandchildren, and her job as a restaurant cook. Lately, she’s been going through chemo-therapy for abdominal cancer, causing her to miss many of her work shifts. During our visit with her, she mentioned she'd been very discouraged by her cancer, and found herself unable to pray. We prayed with her and were able to help her with rent. During a follow-up phone call, she told us: ‘I’m back to work … and I’m praying again!’”
Betty is a woman who recently moved back to her hometown of Cincinnati from Louisiana (fleeing an abusive husband). Betty left everything as she fled in the middle of the night with her four teenage daughters, all of whom she manage to enroll in internships and school programs. Betty found a job but was unable to meet her first month’s rent and we were able to help her with that as well as beds for her daughters, clothing and other furniture. It is extremely gratifying to help a person like B make a fresh start.
As one Vincentian expressed it:
“The work pushes me to become a more open, caring personand to meet vibrant neighbors that I’d never get to know otherwise.”
Ron is a man in his fifties who spent 20 years as a forklift operator, but became disabled by asthma. Ron enjoyed biking and went with Fr. Jim on one of his famous, annual bike hikes. We assisted him in finding subsidized housing and securing disability. He now spends his free time teaching kids how to repair bicycles and is involved in a community garden.
Many of the people we serve are managing their lives reasonably well, until they are hit with an unexpected bill or crises. We do have screens to keep from creating over-dependency, as we want people to become self-sustaining.
Kairos Prison Minsitry
Winton Place Youth Center
Winton Place Youth Center is a 501©3 neighborhood after school program aimed at helping our kids advance in school and cultivate positive attitudes. It was founded in 1984 by concerned neighborhood residents, and members of the New Jerusalem Community, many of whom are now active members of St. Bernard Church. They totally rebuilt the center’s current facility, tutored and volunteered and over the years have been supporters, administrators and program directors. Members of St. Bernard Church have been at the heart of Winton Place Youth Center from day one until the present.
THE VILLAGE DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION
The Village Development Corporation was founded in 1981 by members of St. Bernard Parish and the community, with the mission of providing affordable housing to low and moderate income homebuyers. VDC buys, renovates, and sells distressed properties, and promotes business development in the Spring Grove Village neighborhood.
La Amistad is an all-volunteer non profit dedicated to providing affordable quality rental housing, and a path to home ownership in Spring Grove Village to Hispanic immigrants and refugees. La Amistad was started in 1981 by members of the New Jerusalem Community, and continues to be operated to this day by a number of St. Bernard parishioners.