ARCHDIOCESE ADOPT-A-FAMILY PROGRAM CELEBRATED 25 YEARS OF BRINGING CHRISTMAS CHEER TO HUNDREDS OF LOW INCOME FAMILIES IN LOS ANGELES
–Archbishop Gomez and hundreds of volunteers delivered gifts to nearly 2,000 children Dec. 19 in Downtown Los Angeles and Skid Row–
Archbishop José H. Gomez blessed more than 1,500 volunteers at the Cathedral of the Lady of the Angels who delivered donated food, toys, housewares and clothing to more than 500 low income families in the downtown area on Saturday, Dec. 19, at 7 a.m., marking the 25th anniversary of Adopt-A-Family, outreach program of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.
Following a brief prayer service and a ceremony where program founder Msgr. Terrance Fleming, executive director of the Archdiocese’s Mission Office, and founding volunteers were awarded, Archbishop Gomez and the volunteers departed from the Cathedral to distribute the packages to families in need. Many of these families occupy single rooms in apartments and hotels in areas near the Cathedral.
“Concern for the poor and the vulnerable is the foundation of our faith, and it is the foundation of the Adopt-A-Family program as well. It has been so for a generation, and will be for many years to come,” said Msgr. Fleming.
Earlier in the year, Cathedral volunteers visited residences in the downtown area to meet families and enroll them to receive Christmas packages to make sure that the gifts contained in each package are age-appropriate, and that clothes are the correct size.
Each of the families received a two-week supply of groceries, along with household goods and Christmas gifts, including toys, clothing, and school supplies for the children.
Adopt-a-Family was created in December 1990, to serve the needs of families who were outside of the help of government programs or other charitable programs. Many of this year’s recipient families continue to be underserved, and lack the means to offer a dignifying Christmas celebration to their children.
“There are still so many downtown families who desperately need our assistance,” said Msgr. Fleming. “The generosity of our supporters can even go as far as to cover rent and utility bills for the families that we serve. I invite everyone to join the next generation of ‘Adopt-A-Family angels’ and experience the joy of participating in our program.”
Hear from families who have benefited from the program in this video:
For more information, please visit http://www.olacathedral.org/cathedral/services/aaf.html.
ATTACHED PHOTOS: Photo Credit: Dima Otvertchenko/Archdiocese of Los Angeles
Photo 1 – Archbishop José H. Gomez and his Priest Secretary Father Brian Nunes walk to an apartment building on skid row to hand gifts to families in need during the Dec. 19 Adopt-A-Family outreach in downtown Los Angeles.
Photo 2 – More than 1,500 volunteers visited 503 families in need in downtown Los Angeles to hand Christmas gifts donated by corporations, Catholic schools, families and individuals, through Adopt-A-Family, an outreach program of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.
Photo 3 – Archbishop José H. Gomez visited the home of the Naranjo family in South Central Los Angeles on Dec. 19 during the Adopt-A-Family outreach to families in need in downtown Los Angeles and skid row. Here the Archbishop hands a gift to Martha Naranjo, 10, the oldest of three children raised by a single mother.