Fr. Chris' Article - November 10, 2019

Nov 8, 2019

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Those who attended one of the Masses last Sunday will recall Miss Shannon Mehaffey and her beautiful testimony of faith and her evangelical witness. For those who missed it, Shannon is a young woman originally from New Orleans who is currently working as a missionary. I invited her to speak at Masses (she was not able to attend the Saturday Mass) about the group she is a part of here in Evansville, the People of Praise. This group is small but widespread, and there are currently about 10 members here in the house in Evansville’s south side of various Christian faiths (majority Catholic). Their primary charism is to live out poverty amongst the materially and spiritually impoverished.

Shannon gave a beautiful and joyful testimony about their shared life of poverty and radical simplicity. I asked her to come and speak about their group and mission for two reasons. The first is that they have been here in Evansville for 10 years and I had no idea they even existed! The second is that when I met Shannon here in our adoration chapel over a year ago, I was completely impressed with her joy and the witness of her life, and I wanted people here at the parish to experience that and be inspired as well.

We did not do any sort of collection or make any appeal on behalf of the group, as that was not the intention of Shannon or myself. However, after each of her testimonies, several people came to me asking how they could help them to do their work of evangelizing the poor and often forgotten people who live on ‘the wrong side of the tracks.’ To that end, I wanted to let folks know that if you wished to help them in their mission and to make provision for them in their living arrangements and even transportation, we will accept, consolidate any contributions, and pass that on to them. If you choose to do this, please write checks to St. John parish, but notate in the memo line “People of Praise”, and we will place it in the appropriate account.

To be clear, they did not ask for or otherwise solicit any kind of assistance from us. Part of their charism is depending on Providence. But thank you to those who wish to be cooperators with Providence for them!

Praised be Jesus Christ,

-Fr. Chris

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