Catholic Transcript Magazine of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Hartford Connecticut

As we celebrate the 175th Anniversary of the Archdiocese, we look back… on July 20, 1971 when parishioners settled on a site for the new St. Thomas the Apostle Church, Oxford.
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pg4-malta-night-musicHARTFORD – Malta House of Care will sponsor a new fund-raising event at a new venue in October. “A Little Night Music Under the Stars” will be held from 6-8 p.m. Oct. 28 at Infinity Music Hall and Bistro, 32 Front St.

“We have created and successfully grown a signature fund-raiser, ‘Celebrating Wonder Women,’ but we wanted to bring the message of our mission before broader audiences and more men,” said Barbara “Bobbie” Bartucca, executive director of the Malta House of Care Foundation Inc. “We believe that ‘A Little Night Music’ will do that.”

Tickets to “A Little Night Music” are $100, which includes a $50 tax-deductible donation. Proceeds will support the Malta House of Care mobile medical clinic, a source of free primary health care to financially struggling adults in Greater Hartford.

The music will be performed by students of the Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts, including a jazz chorus of 20 and a jazz trio.

The event will feature hors d’oeuvres and pasta stations, cocktails, desserts from a Waterbury bakery and a silent auction.

Half of all American adults are at economic risk in terms of their levels of literacy, education and health care, Ms. Bartucca said in a press release. She said that despite the Affordable Care Act, 13.4 percent of Americans under the age of 65 lack health insurance.

“A few of our patients had not been qualified to receive Medicaid, [but] because of the new regulations, now are able to qualify for that, though we’ve seen maybe a 10 percent decrease initially over the last eight months,” she said in a phone interview. “But now, we’ve had over 350 new patients come, so clearly there are still people, and we’re still getting new patients every day,” she added.

Estimates vary widely, but more than 150,000 Connecticut residents still lack health insurance, she said.

“These hardworking individuals weigh monthly premiums, deductibles, and co-pays against low wages, wage stagnation and the high cost of living: absence of affordable housing, utilities (one in five Connecticut households cannot pay heating/cooling bills), transportation, child care and food,” the press release said.

Ms. Bartucca told the Transcript, “We’re looking to expand the number of people who are aware of what we do, so this is an event for both men and women. You know, we have a women’s event each year [‘Celebrating Wonder Women’], but that’s only for women, so we wanted something that would reach out to a whole different constituency. This is a couples event, so we’re going to have men involved.”

The Malta House of Care mobile medical clinic is open for 20 hours every week, rotating around  four sites in Hartford neighborhoods: 49 Winthrop St. (Clay Arsenal, Mondays); 134 Farmington Ave. (Asylum Hill, Tuesdays); 160 Main St. (downtown, Wednesdays); and 10 Campfield Ave. (South End, Barry Square, Thursdays). More than 30,000 free patient visits have been provided since the clinic opened in 2006. This primary care is made possible by volunteer health professionals and by donations from individuals, foundations and corporations.

Information is available at www.maltahouseofcare.org or 860-548-1593.

alertAt the Spring Assembly of the U.S. bishops, Cardinal Joseph Tobin suggested that a delegation ofbishops go to the border to see for themselves what was happening to newly arrived immigrants, families and children. On July 1 and 2, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, president of the U.S. bishops conference, and five other bishops conducted a pastoral visit to the diocese of Brownsville, Texas. Stops included Mass at the Shrine of Our Lady of San Juan del Valle with the community, a visit to anHHS/OBR Shelter and Mass for the families there, a visit to the Customs and Border Patrol processing center in McAllen, TX, and a press conference at the end of their visit. Catholic News Service accompanied the bishops on their border trip. 

  1. Backgrounder and analysis of the bishops’ trip to the border: Cardinal DiNardo told CNS, “You cannot look at immigration as an abstraction when you meet” the people behind the issue.
  2. At final press conference, Cardinal Daniel Dinardo said the church was willing to be part of any conversation to find humane solutions because even a policy of detaining families together in facilities caused “concern.”
  3. Bishops serve soup to immigrant families at a center run by Catholic Charities and listen to their stories. Scranton Bishop Joseph Bambera said he found hope in hearing the people in the room talk about what’s ahead. They didn’t speak of making money but of finding safety for their children, he said, driven by “the most basic instinct to protect your family.”
  4. At an opening Mass he Basilica of Our Lady of San Juan del Valle-National Shrine near McAllen, Texas, Bishop Daniel Flores of Brownsville told Massgoers, “The bishops are visiting here so they can stop and look and talk to people and understand, especially the suffering of many who are amongst us,”

A delegation of U.S. bishops goes on a fact-finding mission at the U.S.-Mexican border to learn more about Central American immigration detention.

Following their visit to an immigrant detention center, U.S. bishops said they are even more determined to call on Congress for comprehensive immigration reform.