Agency Spotlight Vol 47 No 3

Staff member from Catholic Charities of Buffalo reflects on serving during
the pandemic

Agency Photo: James Campbell

Down in the southeastern reaches of the area served by Catholic Charities of Buffalo rests a small food pantry staffed currently by myself and nine tremendous volunteers fulfilling God’s work of feeding the hungry, which is the first of the Corporal Works of Mercy.

Our ministry is both supported by and supportive of all who come to us. Every day that the food pantry is open there are shared feelings of concern, of laughter, of joy, and especially of comfort in knowing that we made a difference in the lives of all we served. 

I was thinking of a line of lyrics in a favorite song from years past. The Grateful Dead’s “Scarlet Begonias” reads, “Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right.” I see the light in my volunteers. I see the light in those most grateful for what we do each day.

One elderly couple visited our site early last week. The husband said to me as I was setting bags full of food items on the table outside for them, “I see the face of Jesus in you.” I smiled and gave a wave while turning to go back inside to help prepare bags of food for the next family. It didn’t really sink in until later what he had said to me. I thought about it and realized how lucky I am to be in a position to do God’s work on a little street corner in Wellsville, N.Y., for Catholic Charities.

My Catholic faith has always been important in my life. I have been blessed with a wonderful wife and two beautiful daughters, and I do my best to be a good spiritual leader for our household. I’ve been blessed to have a great supervisor and coworkers throughout the Parish Outreach and Advocacy Department. All of them have been most supportive in my tenure with Catholic Charities during the last seven-and-a-half years. I can only hope and pray that all of the people doing God’s work across Catholic Charities receive the same blessings I have and continue to receive them each and every day.”

For other testimonies from Catholic Charities of Buffalo staff, please see CCUSA’s storybank.