NEW HAVEN – Continuing a 45-year tradition, the Archdiocese of Hartford’s Office for Catholic Social Justice Ministry (OCSJM) will present awards for exceptional efforts in social justice ministry to Archbishop Henry J. Mansell, a local service agency and a parish community at its annual dinner Oct. 22 at the Aqua Turf Club in Plantsville.
The dinner and awards event brings together parish and agency representatives from across the Archdiocese of Hartford each year to recognize individuals and organizations who have made outstanding contributions to improve the lives of people.
This year, OCSJM will pay special tribute to Archbishop Mansell, under whose leadership numerous significant initiatives have been accomplished. Archbishop Mansell will receive the Most Reverend Joseph P. Donnelly Individual Award for his instrumental role in creating the Cathedral Green supportive and low-income housing project in Hartford. This project converted the former Cathedral School into 28 affordable family housing units that have easy access to programs and services to ensure that residents continue on a path of stability.
Building on the success of this effort, Archbishop Mansell is currently guiding a similar project in Waterbury, converting the former St. Francis Xavier School into affordable family housing units at Francis Xavier Plaza.
Apostle Immigrant Services (AIS) of New Haven will receive the Most Reverend Joseph P. Donnelly Organization Award for its outstanding service to the immigrant community of Greater New Haven.
Established in 2008 by the Apostles of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, based in Hamden, AIS is a nonprofit agency that provides a range of educational programs and legal immigration services. Its impact extends far beyond the over-400 clients served in its short history, improving the lives of family and community members and promoting greater understanding across cultural divides.
The Dr. Charlie Schlegel Award, established in 2011 in honor of Dr. Schlegel, a founding member of the Cooperative Parish Sharing (CPS) Committee, will be presented to St. Joseph Church in Winsted for its CPS-supported projects that address the needs of low-income and homebound elderly people in their community.
The parish’s Community Life Meal Delivery Project and the Elderly Luncheons Project provide over 700 hot meals annually, offering a source of both nutrition and community for many who lack support in those areas.
Guest speaker Jack Jezreel will offer reflections on the theme: “St. Francis, Pope Francis and a Vision for the 21st-Century Church.” A popular and passionate presenter, Mr. Jezreel is the founder and president of JustFaith Ministries, a conversion-based justice formation program that, since its creation in 1989, has touched the lives of over 30,000 people in over 1,500 communities.
Mr. Jezreel said he looks forward to reconnecting with people who have graduated from his JustFaith program in the archdiocese and to challenging those present to open their hearts and minds to the call for justice and healing in our world.
The event begins with a reception at 5 p.m.
Tickets are available by calling OCSJM at 203-777-7279 or visiting online at www.catholicsocialjustice.org.
Tickets cost $70, or $650 for a table of 10.
The dinner program booklet offers friends and supporters an opportunity to recognize and celebrate the award winners by purchasing an ad. That may be arranged by emailing Linda Roberto at firstname.lastname@example.org for more details. The deadline for ad submissions is Oct. 7.