Assistance to the Poor
St. Vincent de Paul Society
A monthly collection is taken up after all parish Masses on the third weekend of the month for the good works of St. Vincent de Paul Society. Members of this ministry interview local individuals and families requesting emergency assistance for food, shelter, clothing, medical care, counseling, transportation, etc. Members also meet once a month to coordinate the program and update training. More...
OLA Food Collection
Donations of non-perishable food are collected at the trailer parked on the north side of the church. These donations are delivered to the Beta Center in Pomona, one of three food pantries operated by Inland Valley Hope Partners (www.InlandValleyHopePartners.org). Acceptable donations include canned goods of all kinds, peanut butter, cereal, rice, beans, canned meats, baby food, personal hygiene items, and baby diapers. Please do not leave perishable items such as fruit. Hope Partners are supported by the Annual Walk for the Hungry in October. This year OLA's walkers raised over $3,500 for local hunger programs sponsored by Hope Partners. (See below.)
OLA Bread Table
Each weekend, surplus bread and baked goods donated by a local merchant are offered to parishioners for a freewill donation at a table in the auditorium. Funds collected at this table are donated to Inland Valley Hope Partners for local programs serving the hungry poor. A ministry at OLA known as "Bread Angels" consists of volunteers willing to pick up the surplus goods and deliver them to OLA or to other locations in the local area such as the Beta (Pomona) or SOVA (Ontario) food distribution centers. For more information, contact Deacon Bob Steighner by phone at (909) 626-3596, ext. 234 or by email.
Bags in Benches
Parishioners find grocery bags in the church pews, along with a list of food items needed by the local food pantry serving the poor. They are asked to return the following weekend with a bag full of non-perishable food donations such as canned fruits, vegetables and meats, rice, crackers, snacks, beans, noodles, pasta and pasta sauce, cookies and candy. (Please do not include opened packages, fresh fruits or vegetables, fresh meat or fresh bakery.) Uturn Teen Ministry coordinates this project. The next collection date is Feb. 12-13 after all parish Masses.
Homeless Outreach Programs
Monthly Community Meal
OLA provides all the food for the Claremont Community Meal hosted at Sumner School (1770 Sumner Ave.) on the last Sunday of the month. The meal is served between 3 and 4:30 p.m. to families at risk or homeless. OLA parishioners provide donated food items to Sumner School by 2:30 p.m. If you are able to help, select an item from the menu and prepare enough to serve 25 people. Please let Deacon John Tullius know what you would like to bring by calling (909) 576-6276 or emailing email@example.com. Menu: green salad and dressings; your choice of main entre; potatoes; vegetables; macaroni and cheese; or dessert. In addition to the meal, OLA also provides volunteers: Craft Coordinator (supplies to be provided by OLA); Sports Coordinator (organizes games for the older kids on the playground, ball are provided); and Transportation for pick-up and return (Foothill Blvd to Sumner School) for families without cars.
Monthly Shelter Meal
OLA provides a meal on the first Sunday of the month for residents of a local shelter for homeless families in transition. Our House is located in Pomona, north of the San Bernardino Freeway, and is the last remaining, year-round shelter for homeless families, in the entire Inland Valley. It is operated by Hope Partners, a consortium of local faith communities. If you are able to help, select an item from the menu and prepare enough to serve 25 people. Please let Deacon John Tullius know what you would like to bring by calling (909) 576-6276 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Menu: green salad and dressings; your choice of main entre; potatoes; vegetables; macaroni and cheese; or dessert. Please plan to arrive at the shelter by 5:30 p.m.
Early in January, the OLA community collects donations of new underwear and socks for the homeless. These donations are brought to the local Winter Shelter Program which serves about 200 homeless persons nightly during the coldest months. The collection is scheduled the weekend of Jan. 8-9, 2011 at OLA. Look for the bins on the patio and at entrances to the church. Please do not bring clothing or blankets.
Walk for the Hungry
Annual event slated Sunday, Oct. 9, is held at Chaffey High School in Ontario. This is the most important fundraiser for hunger programs sponsored by Inland Valley Hope Partners, the consortium of local faith communities. The event celebrated 38 years in 2011. OLA mobilizers the largest church group of walkers each year, including clergy, adults and teens. Hope Partners offers a wide range of services for the hungry poor in our community: three food assistance centers, a transitional shelter for homeless families, and counseling services for those seeking employment or other benefits. For information about the walk, contact Lorraine Takehara at (909) 944-1033. More...
Turkey and all the trimmings are served for anyone who is alone or without family to help celebrate Thanksgiving. Since this is an OLA family meal, there will be no cost to guests. All that is asked is that guests provide their names so that sufficient food may be prepared. The dinner is hosted at noon in the auditorium by a dedicated cadre of volunteers – you could be one of them! Cooks are invited to prepare turkey or side dishes. Bill and Judith Mussatto are available at 626-3777 to answer questions or accept offers of help. Or visit the information table on the patio during the month of November.
Distribution of family names and information takes place on the patio after all Masses several weekends before Christmas. The names of local families are provided by Uncommon Good, OLA’s St. Vincent de Paul Society, and the San Gabriel Valley Regional Center. Donors have the option of providing gift cards for a family shopping trip, wrapping gifts/food and bringing them to the Uncommon Good office, or delivering the gifts/food in person. Single donations of toys or gift cards are also accepted. For more information, contact Kathleen Noonan at (909) 399-0563. Read the guidelines for sponsors...
Alternative Gift Christmas Market
This proud OLA tradition celebrates its Silver Jubilee in 2010. Here's the Christ-centered alternative to mall madness... Shoppers are invited to look carefully at a “shopping list” of items needed by the poor around the world and in our own backyard. They mark their choices and receive a beautiful Christmas card for each "gift" to present to relatives and friends. It’s easy! Representatives from local, national and international programs are on hand to answer questions and tell you how your gift will make a difference in the lives of real people. An “after-market” for late shoppers is available on the first Sunday of December between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m. on the patio. Additional forms are available at the parish office or on the Welcome Cart through Dec. 20. Or click here to view or print a copy. Read more about this important OLA tradition.
Angel Tree Program
The Sunday before Thanksgiving, Angel Tree distributes the names of children whose incarcerated parent cannot send a Christmas gift to them. Donors return wrapped presents to the patio in mid-December and they are distributed to families. For details, contact Julie McInnis-Barron at (909) 596-0617.
Other Outreach Programs
Fair Trade Sales
Chocolate products will be added next Sunday to coffee certified as “fair trade” for sale on the patio the second and fourth Sundays. Regular and decaffeinated coffee in ground and whole bean form are $9 per one-pound bag. Higher Grounds Trading Company, our supplier, promises some of the fullest-flavored, smoothest coffees and chocolate the world has to offer. They are produced by fair trade cooperatives that utilize environmentally sustainable, organic farming methods. These cooperatives guarantee farmers a living wage that enables them to care for their families and improve their communities. Democratic principles within the cooperatives also give women a voice in decision-making. More...
OLA for LIfe
This group is dedicated to the protection of human life from conception to natural death, according to the teachings of the Catholic Church. It sponsors an information table on the pation the last Sunday of the month with current news about local and national issues, programs, and events. OLA for LIfe supportst local pregnancy counseling centers in a variety of ways, and works with other pro-life ministries in the community. More...
Pax Christi of the Pomona Valley (Peace and Justice)
This is a community of peace-builders who pray, discern and act upon Catholic social justice teachings. The OLA chapter is affiliated with regional, national and international Pax Christi organizations (www.paxchristiUSA.org). San Gabriel Region Bishop Gabino Zavala is President of Pax Christi USA, and former OLA associate pastor, Fr. Chris Ponnet, is a regional director in Southern California. OLA's chapter was founded by George Gould in the 1970's. It is open to anyone with a heart for peace and justice issues, whether youth, teen, or adult. The group sponsors several annual events: the Hiroshima-Nagasaki Peace Vigil around the anniversary of the atomic bomb attack in August; an interfaith prayer service after Christmas (usually near the Feast of the Holy Innocents; a celebration of Cesar Chavez Day in April co-sponsored with Pomona Habla and the Latino Roundtable; and an information table in Memorial Park on July 4 shared with the Peace and Justice Committee of the Pomona Valley. For information,email email@example.com.
Sew N Sews
This group of women gathers informally on Tuesdays from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. in the convent to work on indivdual yarn projects that become blankets, hats, etc., to be donated to local charities: House of Ruth, David and Margaret Home, LeRoy Haynes Home, St. Vincent de Paul society, and Uncommon Good. BAby blankets are donated to the Pregnancy Counseling Center in Ontario. The group accepts donations of yarn. To date, 72 baby blankets and 750 crocheted afghans have been made and donated. For more information, contact the parish office at (909) 626-3596.
One-on-One Christian Care
As representatives of the OLA faith community, our Bereavement Ministers provide spiritual, emotional, and practical assistance to grieving individuals and families. If you experience the death of a loved one, please contact the parish office as soon as possible to begin making arrangements. A Bereavement Minister will contact you to answer immediate questions and to set a time to meet with you to address additional concerns and to make selections for the funeral rite. More about this ministry...
Pastoral Care Ministry to the Sick and Homebound
The mission of the Pastoral Care Ministry is to bring the spiritual community of Our Lady of the Assumption to those who are unable to physically join us. We are sent forth guided by the Holy Spirit to make the Good News present and alive to our brothers and sisters through Word and Sacrament, hospitality, prayer for healing, and service. More...
Singles in Transition
OLA's Stephen Ministry equips lay volunteers to provide confidential, one-on-one Christian care to individuals who are experiencing difficulties in their life. These situations might include loss of a loved one, divorce or separation, illness, spiritual crisis, loss of a job or relocation, family problems, aging or caring for an aging family member, loneliness, hospitalization, or financial stress. Stephen Ministry is there to help. More...
Basic JustFaith Formation Program
JustFaith is an extended justice education process that meets weekly for 30 weeks, employing books, videos, guest speakers, discussion, prayer, retreats and hands-on experiences. Participants also discover the joy of becoming community and sharing a journey of faith and compassion that is both life-giving and challenging. The program begins Thursday, Sept. 15. Register now through Deacon John Tullius by e-mail or at (909) 576-6276. More...
This JustFaith program is an extension of the basic course, presenting a spiritual deepening process that invites small groups of adult Christians to explore the intersection between contemplative presence and social action, as it is lived out in their own lives. Participants practice "the undivided life" of Christian discipleship—engaging in contemplation while immersing themselves in the heart of our fragmented world. The program begins Tuesday, Oct. 25 and Wednesday, Oct. 26. Register now through Deacon John Tullius by e-mail or at (909) 576-6276. More...
This is a small, OLA faith communiuty that is sent forth through the Gospel to create an awareness of Catholic social justice teachings. In solidarity with the poor and vulnerable, it responds to their material and spiritual needs. Members develop awareness through small groups where they pray, learn, share, and inform. They act by responding to the needs of others and by working for change where they see injustice.
Uncommon Good (Clinic to College Mentoring Program)
Uncommon Good is a nonprofit organization housed at OLA that serves the poor, offering programs in education, health, and the environment. These include Clinic to College, Adopt an Angel, Teen Green and Green Jobs, and the Pomona Valley Urban Agriculture Initiative. Its director is Nancy Mintie, a long-time OLA parishioner. More...
Walk for the Hungry
Annual event slated Sunday, Oct. 9, is held at Chaffey High School in Ontario. This is the most important fundraiser for hunger programs sponsored by Inland Valley Hope Partners, the consortium of local faith communities. The event will celebrate 38 years in 2011. OLA mobilizers the largest church group of walkers each year, including clergy, adults and teens. Hope Partners offers a wide range of services for the hungry poor in our community: three food assistance centers, a transitional shelter for homeless families, and counseling services for those seeking employment or other benefits. For information about the walk, contact Lorraine Takehara at (909) 944-1033.
Croix des Bouquets, Haiti
This outreach to the poor in Haiti has been associated with OLA since 1992 through the Tilus Family. Its focus is on providing tuition assistance to combat illiteracy through its Adopt-A-Tuition Program. A fundraising bake sale at OLA is planned Sunday, Oct. 2, to raise money to transport a bus to Haiti. More...
Ciudad de los Niños de Salamanca, Mexico
Our Spanish-Speaking Community spearheads the parish support of this orphanage in Mexico. Ciudad de los Niños has sent its choir, band, and mariachis to entertain at fundraising concerts, while OLA provides a little rest and recreation for these hard-working musicians. It's a win-win relationship that has brought joy to both commnunities. More...
Jeff C. Domond Foundation, Haiti
This non-profit organization serving the poor in Haiti is the particular mission of parishioner Joe Domond who established it in memory of his son, a Damien High School graduate. A major fundraiser is slated Saturday, Nov. 12, 2011, to raise money for its medical mission, school, and water projects. More...
Village Network Africa (Tanzania)
Village Network Africa (ViNA) is a nonprofit organization committed to fighting rural village poverty in Africa. It focuses on collaborative relationships with village communities, government agencies, and partner organizations to develop sustainable solutions for improved health, nutrition, infrastructure, education, economic and social conditions. More...