Pastoral Care & Dignity of Life Ministry Fair

Saturday, May 18 – Sunday May 19, After all Masses, Commons



My mom taught me a lot about hospitality. I’m guessing your mom, favorite aunt, or cool neighbor taught you a lot about hospitality too. Hospitality for my mom almost always involved food. A baked ham dinner for a new widow, cookies for church events, and an open door on Christmas Eve that fed homemade lasagna to anyone who arrived at our door. My firstborn arrived in the early morning; Mom flew cross country and arrived before lunch. When I got pneumonia with three kids under 5, Mom arrived. Mom was always in my corner.

My mom’s hospitality and pastoral care have plenty in common. They both are grounded in compassion—empathy to step in someone else’s shoes and a willingness to serve. And, of course, there is the food. Our Homebound Communion ministers and ministers for Long-Term Care facilities bring food—bread broken at our altar—to share with those in our community that are unable to be with us at Sunday Mass. Stephen Ministers reach out to people week in and week out, walking with those who need a listening ear. Our Funeral Hospitality team is literally all about food—cooking, serving and cleaning up over 5000 funeral meals a year.

Next weekend volunteers from the Pastoral Care Team will be on hand after every Mass to share ministry opportunities with you. We’d like to share something else with you as well - in honor of our mothers and other fabulous women who have modeled hospitality for us, we are baking our mothers’ favorite desserts to share with you. Stop by next weekend after Mass and check out my mom’s rum cake. Happy Mother’s Day!



Stephen Ministry is a quiet ministry. We work confidentially one-on-one with people who need a little listening support.

Each week our Stephen Minsters meet one-on one with their care receivers for about an hour. They listen. They encourage. They pray with and for their care receiver. We ask the Holy Spirit to guide us.

Sometimes Stephen Ministry can stretch us, take us places we might not choose. We might worry that we have nothing to offer. We do. We have ourselves. Nothing more. Nothing less.

Our presence is our ministry. We simply show up. If we’re really good at Stephen Ministry, we show up and shut up. We let our care receiver talk. We let them tell their story. Without judgment. Without commentary. Ours is a listening presence. We honor another by listening to their stories, hearing their pain and their struggles and being with them in “it”, whatever “it” is.

Our job is not to fix. Most of life’s painful struggles are not fixable. We listen, pray and offer a compassionate, non-judgmental ear. We help. Jesus heals.

Time Commitment

A Stephen Minister usually provides care to one person at a time, meeting with that person once a week for about an hour. Once a month, Stephen Ministers gather with their Stephen Leaders for supervision and continuing education. Oh… and don’t forget the training. It’s fun. It will stretch you.

Training Dates

Thursday Nights, 6:00 - 9:00 PM November 7, 2019 - March 5, 2020

How Do I Find Out More?

Our Stephen Ministers are on deck after every Mass next weekend to answer your questions. To apply to become a Stephen Minister, talk to any of our Stephen Ministers or email Beryl Schewe, Director of Pastoral Care at




Do you love Jesus and have a desire to bring Jesus to others? Our Homebound Communion Ministry team would love to meet you. Please consider joining us if you have a few hours once a month to bring Eucharist to our homebound. Typically you will visit 3-4 homebound once a month and bring Communion. You are the face of OLG to our homebound. You are the face of Jesus. Pretty awesome, isn’t it?

Long-Term Care

Thursday and Friday mornings, 10:00 AM
Did you know that OLG offers weekly Communion service to our area Long-Term Care/Assisted Living facilities? Members of the Long-Term Care Communion team offer a Communion service once a month. This is your chance to take your prayer to the next level.




Did you know that OLG serves more than 5,000 funeral lunches each year? We serve a home-cooked hot meal of medallion-style pork roast and turkey roast with fresh green salad, fresh cut fruit, au gratin potatoes, dinner rolls, homemade sauces for the meats and an assortment of homemade desserts. The meal is gluten-free (except the rolls and desserts) and dairy-free (except the au gratin potatoes) – and we serve on real plates with real silverware. How do we do it? Well, with your help. We need desserts (cookies, brownies, bars or bundt cakes), a team to help with set up, as well as a team to serve and clean up. Basically, we need you!

Most funerals are weekdays at 10:30 AM. If you have an occasional free morning, we’d love to have you on the team.

Need one more reason to join the funeral hospitality team? In the Jewish tradition, assisting with funerals is considered a mitzvah, a good deed. Why a mitzvah? Because the person you serve is deceased and can never thank you. You serve as an act of love. Early Church Fathers believed that you would be welcomed to heaven by those you had served in your life, people you may have never met, but those you offered service and care to out of faith and love.

Contact Tom Butler at 952-540-7984.


Got time an occasional morning and love Mass? We need funeral sacristans to help with funerals. You would help set up Mass, work with our servers and help make sure the funeral liturgy runs smoothly.

Never been a sacristan? No problem. We’ll train you and you can shadow our current funeral sacristans until you are ready to fly solo!

Contact Beryl Schewe in the Parish Office (x9035) for more information or to sign up.

Burial and Committal Volunteer

We are looking for a few good people to lead prayer at the cemetery. Have you felt the nudge of the Holy Spirit to step forward in a leadership role? Are you willing to be present to families in one of their most difficult days?

When you serve in this role, the ground you stand on will forever be holy ground for the family. You will serve someone who has walked in faith and followed the cross all the way to their grave. And we will train you and provide every single word spoken! Catholic prayers at the cemetery are short—we’re convinced they were written with Minnesota winters in mind!

Gathering family at the cemetery for prayer is not for everybody, but if you think it may be for you, contact Beryl Schewe in the Parish Office (x9035).



Something to Think About

This weekend we are highlighting ministries that support and enhance the dignity of all human life from conception to natural death. Our Lady of Grace is truly a profoundly pro-life parish in many ways. We support several crisis pregnancy centers, make financial and in-kind donations to agencies that help victims of abuse start over, bring the Eucharist and God’s love to our homebound and hospitalized, cook and serve meals to our neighbors in need through Sharing and Caring Hands and Loaves and Fishes, bring homebound Meals on Wheels, and of course; we pray for all of you at Sunday and daily Masses. As you read through the descriptions of the ministries below, please think about whether you are being called to serve in one of them. I guarantee the time spent serving our sisters and brothers will enrich your life. Something to think about.

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Meals on Wheels

Meals on Wheels delivers healthy meals to seniors and those with challenges to mobility and allows the recipients to remain in their homes with dignity. In addition to the meal, the visit by a Meals on Wheels volunteer provides a warm smile and some conversation… Our Lady of Grace has teams that drive for Meals on Wheels once a month and the time commitment is low, between one and two hours each time. Volunteers receive all the instructions needed before delivering the meals on their route. We can always use more drivers, and this is a great ministry to participate with your children.

Sharing and Caring Hands


Sharing and Caring Hands was founded by Mary Jo Copeland to provide a place where the poor and homeless could be fed, get clean and maintain their dignity. has always been a part of the mission.

The scope of Sharing and Caring Hands has expanded over the years to include Mary’s Place, a minute clinic, and dental clinic—all without any government funding. Mary Jo is involved in the operations of Sharing and Caring Hands, praying with both cooks and meal guests.

On the first Wednesday of each month, a group of OLG volunteers prepares and serves lunch to Mary Jo’s guests while on Tuesdays during the school year, moms take OLG middle school students to Sharing and Caring Hands to help serve lunch.


Loaves and Fishes

Loaves and Fishes serves free, nutritious meals to those in need. It is public free meal program is guided by the belief that all people, deserve food, dignity and respect. A dedicated group of OLG volunteers cooks and serves dinner to the guests at St. Stephen’s (22nd and Clinton) on the second Wednesday of each month. There are two shifts—cooks who work beginning at about 3:30 and servers/clean-up who begin at 5:15. We typically serve about 175 guests per evening. In addition to volunteers, the St. Stephen’s location gratefully accepts donations of containers for leftovers, men’s clothing and hygiene items.





Operating out of two locations, one in North Minneapolis and the other in St. Paul, Abria is strategically located to offer a safe, non-judgmental and supportive environment for Twin Cities women, teens and couples experiencing an unexpected pregnancy. Our clients experience friendship, hope and encouragement through positive and life-affirming medical and personal support services, education and resources. We empower women in their time of need. Our resources and support services are grounded in respect and awe for the miracle of every unique, unrepeatable human person, starting with each woman we serve. We help women form a plan that fits best with their current needs and life situation. Our role is to walk with them in friendship, providing the support and resources they need to make a life-affirming decision. We believe in:

  • the inherent dignity of each person, from conception to natural death

  • the right of our clients to receive comprehensive, truthful information in a respectful and compassionate way

  • the importance of addressing the needs of the whole person – intellectual, emotional, spiritual and physical


Cradle of Hope

Cradle of Hope helps over 3,000 families in crisis yearly with a transition from desperation to hope! Women and babies in crisis are supported with financial and material assistance while receiving emotional support before, during and after birth. When an expecting mother applies for assistance through Cradle of Hope, she may receive financial support (rent/mortgage, medical bills, or utilities), safe sleep training and a portable crib or a baby shower basket filled with essential baby items so we can celebrate this new life with her. Cradle of Hope has expanded throughout the state and now partners with 188 agencies, including 7 of the 11 American Indian Tribes.

Pregnancy Choices

Pregnancy Choices believes each client has a story, and their story matters. We walk alongside our clients with compassion and hope and listen to their story. At Pregnancy Choices, we believe that the best way for our clients to make sustainable change in their lives is through life coaching. The life coaching conversation during a pregnancy test allows clients to see possibilities-possibilities that include the life they are carrying.


Our certified life coaches engage clients in one-on-one conversations by asking open-ended questions. Clients begin to identify their values and evaluate their lives. These values then guide clients as they set attainable goals and make positive changes for their future. Our clients, both mothers and fathers, are empowered to make transformative life changes through coaching, education, and practical support in a safe and trusting environment. This allows them to parent with confidence and grow family resiliency.

Thank you for partnering with us through your prayers, donations of baby clothes and diapers, and your financial support. With you, our partners in the mission, we served 557 individual clients last year. Because of you, life can be chosen and families are positively impacted each day.

SouthWest Options for Women


SouthWest Option for Women is located on Main Street in Hopkins and offers pregnancy and parenting education as well as resources to women for over 25 years, SouthWest Options for Women is funded by donations, grants and Minnesota Department of Health and provides a supportive, non-judgmental environment for facing an unexpected pregnancy or sexual health concerns.

Services include free pregnancy testing, resources for general assistance, education and earn while you learn courses that allow clients to earn car seats, cribs, clothing and more. Our services assist newmoms from pregnancy to parents (mom’s, dad’s, grandparents) with children up to 2 years of age.