In Remembrance of Marjorie (MacDonald) Robinson

Please keep Holly Robinson and her family in your prayers on the passing of her mother-in-law, Marjorie R. (MacDonald) Robinson on March 5, in Ridgway, PA, after a lengthy illness.

For more information on her service, please click on the link below.

God Bless,

Harry Ohde

Volunteer President

Society of St. Vincent de Paul/ADC

International Women’s Day – Blessed Rosalie Rendu and The Daughters of Charity

In recognition of National Women’s Day, I would like to talk about Blessed Rosalie Rendu who was an empowering woman in her time and has continued on even today.

Blessed Rosalie Rendu was a Daughters of Charity who served the most impoverished areas of Paris. While in boarding school she came across a hospital where the Daughters of Charity cared for the sick. After discovering the Daughters of Charity and learning of their work, she believed this is what she was called to do. She gained experience caring for the sick working side-by-side with the Sisters. She was 17 years old when she joined the Daughters of Charity. At the age of 22 she made her vows to serve God and the poor. She remained there for 54 years.

She was involved in the training of the young sisters at the Daughters of Charity. She worked with those that were somewhat difficult or fragile. One day she shared advice to a Sister in crisis. Her advice was: “If you want someone to love you, you must be the first to love; and if you have nothing to give, give yourself.” The congregation of Sisters grew and they became a house of charity that had a clinic and school.

Over time, Sr. Rendu opened a free clinic, pharmacy, school, a child and maternal care center, young club for young workers and a home for the elderly without resources.  For young girls and needy mothers, she organized courses in sewing and embroidery. She soon had a network of charitable services.

Today, the Daughters of Charity serves many internationally. There are approximately 17,000 Daughters serving in 90 countries around the world. Little did she know that her influence and determination in helping in a charity capacity would expand internationally throughout the Society. 

God Bless,

Harry Ohde, Volunteer President – Society of St. Vincent de Paul/ADC

Lent. What we Give, What we Learn.

A Lenten Message from Harry Ohde, Volunteer President – SVdP Chicago/ADC

Someone outside of the Catholic faith, with limited knowledge, may have a pretty hard time understanding Lent.

We start with ashes on our forehead, we give up things for the duration of lent, things that we like to show a small sacrifice. We attend longer masses. From the outside world of being catholic, the run down may look like:

We have dirt on our head, we are not eating chocolate, and have chosen to increase the Catholic Calisthenics (stand, sit, kneel, sit, stand). Without knowledge, this may seem bizarre behavior in praise of God.

The truth of the matter, the ashes begin our Lenten journey to remind us from ashes we came and ashes we shall return. God in all his Glory and power created us from the earth, the earth he created. Symbolically He is letting us know that we will return to Him one day.

Giving Up – or is it gaining? Yes, many of us give up a favorite food, hobby, thing, to show a sacrifice to God, letting God know He is most important. What we gain from this “giving up” is far more fulfilling than any box of chocolates, or hobbies we love. I believe the giving up brings us closer to God as we peel away the layers of materialistic temptations and come face to face with the core of who we are and what we represent. We find a sacred place within our soul that allows us to listen better to God, listen better to ourselves, and helps us in becoming the best version of ourselves.

Catholic Calisthenics

During Mass we pray. We pray together as a community of God. It is not just the words; it is the songs that are prayer. It is also our actions. We kneel to bow to God, we stand to unite with him, we sit to listen closely to the words he left us. Jesus endured a persecution that ended in a slow painfilled death. In return we are asked to perform a few simple positions to demonstrate our dedication to God, our appreciation for the ability to physically move about, and a strict discipline of knowledge that praying means we are completely committed: mind, body, and soul.

This year for Lent, let us reflect on the Good. The Good things in life that God has blessed upon us. Things may not be perfect, but there is a lot of good. Let us reflect on the good in others. Let us be kind. Let us offer a smile to strangers, take a minute to talk to someone who may be lonely. Offer a meal to a neighbor who you know may need a little brightening to their day. Let these acts reflect that we are first and foremost our brother’s keeper. We live by what we were taught by Jesus.

When our Lenten journey brings us to Good Friday, let us attend services and reflect that during lent we took the opportunity to live as Jesus taught us. Let us have a deeper connection to God. Let us come face to face with the realization that Jesus, knowing his fate, took up His cross, carried it, suffered, and died. All of this for ONE reason and ONE reason only – Because no matter what, HE LOVES US! HE BELIEVES in US!  

God Bless,

Harry Ohde – Volunteer President SVdP Chicago/ADC

THANK YOU Lorraine … We wish you the best!

We are sad to announce the resignation of Lorraine Parisi, our Director of Thrift Store/Warehouse Operations effective, March 11, 2022. Lorraine began her time with SVdP as a volunteer and has worked her way up to her current position.

She has been instrumental in developing our website and social media accounts as well as being someone everyone could count on when they had a problem or question and needed an answer. Her kindness and her faith is exemplified tenfold through her daily work at SVdP. Lorraine will be missed by many and will be a hard pair of shoes to fill.

We are beyond appreciative of all the hard work Lorraine has done over the past several years, and we wish her nothing but the best. If you wish to drop her an email, you can reach her at

In Remembrance of Norman Rakowski, Former President and Longtime SVdP Member

Please keep the family of Norm Rakowski in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time. Norm was a proud active parishioner of Sacred Heart Church, Palos Hills, and former President and longtime member of St. Vincent de Paul. Visitation is today, Monday, February 21, from 3:00 – 8:00 p.m. at Hills Funeral Home, Ltd., 10201 S. Roberts Rd., Palos Hills, IL 60465. Funeral Tuesday, prayers beginning 9:30 a.m. from the funeral home to Sacred Heart Church, 8245 W. 111th St., Palos Hills, for Mass at 10:00 a.m. Interment Resurrection Cemetery, Justice, IL.

CLICK HERE for Obituary

Lent: 40 Days-40 Items

Instead of giving up something for Lent, the 40 Days-40 Items Challenge is a way of giving back.

Each day of Lent, remove one item from your home, which you don’t use or wear anymore, and place it in a bag. At the end donate these items to one of our SVdP Thrift Stores in Orland Park at 7010 W 159th Street or Libertyville, 168 Peterson Road.

Your donated items will be shared with our friends in need!

Registration Now Open: Lenten Day of Reflection

This is a great opportunity for both spiritual growth and friendship with your fellow Vincentians. This is an in-person event that will be presented on April 2 and repeated on April 9. The event will begin with registration at 8:00 am and end about 4:00 pm.

Included in the day will be Mass, talks on Vincentian Spirituality, group discussions, lunch, time for personal reflection, and access to beautiful grounds. There is no cost to you. The Archdiocesan Council of Chicago is funding the events.

Because this is an in-person event, proof of vaccination will be required and masks must be worn at all times.

For more information or to register for either day, please contact Mike Syslo at (602) 625-1078 or via email at The following information will be required: Name, address, phone, email address, District and Conference name. In addition, Mike will need to know if you have any dietary restrictions.

Attention Deacons: If you plan to attend either day and would like to participate in the Mass at 8:30 with Fr. Gerry Kelly, please let Mike know.

Please Pray for Alan Schoen

Former District IV President and Conference President of St. Benedict

Alan Schoen, a former District IV President and a Conference President of St. Benedict passed away on February 4, 2022. Alan was an active member in the conference, food pantry and at the central office. He was part of the Ozanam Orientation formatters. Served as insurance advisor to the Central Office. He was very supportive of the Friends of the Poor event building the unlock the key game. On the day of the FOP event, he was also present at the event selling tickets for the game making sure all tickets were sold.He was part of many committees such as the 5K and FOP event and others.

Please keep Alan and his family in your prayers.

For service information, please CLICK HERE.

SVdP Donation Events – 2022

Many Donation Events are already scheduled for 2022 with more to come. Donated items are provided to families in need throughout Chicago and Cook and Lake County areas.

We ask that you donate with dignity!
Broken, ripped, and stained items cannot be provided to those in need or sold in our store.

What items can we accept as donations?  Everything except mattresses, pianos, and organs.

CLICK HERE to see if there’s a Donation Event coming up near you!

Catholic Social Ministry Gathering 2022

This year, we will pray, learn, and advocate together on our Catholic vision for the post-pandemic world and call to bring justice to the margins.

This year’s virtual gathering will include:

·    Inspiring leading voices in Church and society.
·    Workshops with policy experts and grassroots community leaders.
·    Resources from dozens of Catholic social ministry organizations.
·    And much more!

For more information, CLICK HERE.
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