Catholic Charities announces 2018 award winners

The Catholic Charities selection committee has awarded the 2018 Bishop John J. McRaith Providing Help, Creating Hope Award certificates to the following individuals and groups who have demonstrated charity in their work and deeds. The award is named after Bishop John J. McRaith who served the diocese from 1981-2009 and who passed away in 2017.

The 2018 recipients are:

Dawson Springs, Eddyville and Princeton – Blessed Trinity Council, Knights of Columbus

This council raised $1,000 for the local food bank, sponsored “40 Days for Lent” and donated 2,080 pounds of food. They also donated nearly $10,000 for an ultrasound machine for New Hope Pregnancy Center.  They also purchased coats for school children. In total, this small council raised over $37,000 for charity in 2017.

Eddyville – Dixie Utter, St. Mark Parish

Dixie is a director of H.O.P.E. food bank and served as volunteer for five years prior.  She serves on the board of Nonnie’s Place, a shelter for homeless and battered women. She also volunteers at Nonnie’s Attic, a resale store which helps fund the shelter. Dixie also serves as president of the Pennyrile Area Homemakers Association and is a member of the Eddyville Women’s Club.

Henderson – Michael Coomes, Holy Name of Jesus Parish

Michael works in the food pantry, raises food for the poor in the parish garden, and works with St. Vincent de Paul picking up and delivering furniture to the poor. He frequently performs other works of charity without notice.

Morganfield – Beta Club, John Paul II Catholic School

These young students prepare goodies, make cards and deliver them to homebound.  They spend time with the recipients and do activities such as working puzzles, singing or playing cards during their visits. They have also cooked meals, cleaned homes, visited nursing homes, and each they also year give their time working the “Mouse in the House” event for preschool children. This group acts to provide spiritual and social support to those in need.

Morganfield – Bill Collins, St. Ann Parish

Bill picks up food in Evansville from the food bank twice a month using his personal vehicle and trailer. He is actively involved with St. Vincent de Paul.

Murray – Mike Basile, St. Leo Parish

Mike chairs the Social Justice committee in his parish. He coordinates parishioners to assist at the local soup kitchen, Soup for the Soul. He inspires others to see Christ in the poor and homeless.

Owensboro – Jail Ministry Team, Immaculate Parish

This group visits the Daviess County Detention Center to take Holy Communion to prisoners and provide spiritual seeds and encouragement.

Owensboro – Laurie Hicks, St. Stephen Cathedral Parish

Laurie has served as the board chair for St. Benedict’s Emergency Shelter for Men for the past two years.  She also coordinates all the St. Stephen monthly volunteers at the shelter. Laurie also initiated the Ghost Out Program that reminds teens just prior to prom about the dangers of drinking and driving

Owensboro – Rita Moorman, Blessed Sacrament Chapel

Rita serves as director of the Owensboro Housing Authority Board and serves on the board for Owensboro Affordable Housing Board. She is a Eucharistic minister and helps in parish and community events.

Owensboro – Debbie Murphy, St. Pius X Parish

Debbie has been the parish president of the St. Vincent de Paul and is passionate about her calling to be the “face of Christ” for those in need. She also provides outreach to the Burmese community and transports them for medical and dental appointments.

Owensboro – St. Benedict’s Shelter Team, SS. Joseph and Paul Parish

Once a month, this team prepares and serves a meal to 60+ homeless men at the shelter. The team also acts as a companion to many at the shelter and provide spiritual and emotional support to the residents throughout the year.

Owensboro – Tony Powers, Precious Blood Parish

This individual is president of the St. Vincent de Paul at the parish. He helped rebuild a parishioner’s house that was destroyed by fire and solicited help from many others to assist the parishioner.

Owensboro – Dan and Sandra Thomas, Blessed Mother Parish

The Thomas’ are actively involved with St. Vincent de Paul. They also participate in construction and maintenance projects.

Providence – Sharon Mathias, Holy Cross Parish

This individual collects and delivers food to the pantry, provides materials for lap robes for residents of nursing homes, and sends gift boxes overseas at Christmas.