Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Alexandria Presented with 2019 Good Shepherd Housing Philanthropy Award

Nov 15, 2019

Tuesday, November 12, 2019
Amber Roseboom
Director of Media Relations
Catholic Diocese of Arlington

Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Alexandria Presented
with 2019 Good Shepherd Housing Philanthropy Award

Parish Recognized for Efforts to Provide Permanent Housing Solutions
and Wrap-Around Services to Marginalized Along Route 1 Corridor

ARLINGTON, Va. – On Saturday, November 9, Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Alexandria, Va., was presented with the 2019 Good Shepherd Housing Philanthropy Award for its support of Good Shepherd Housing and Family Services (GSH). Good Shepherd Catholic Church has partnered with GSH since its inception over 40 years ago to offer permanent housing and emergency assistance to those in need along the Route 1 corridor.

“Our partnership with Good Shepherd Housing is a way in which we live out our Catholic faith and identity in the Mount Vernon area, directly impacting the lives of those in need in our community,” said Father Thomas Ferguson, Pastor of Good Shepherd Catholic Church, Member of the GSH Community Leadership Council and Vicar General of the Catholic Diocese of Arlington. “Practically speaking, it means some of our neighbors go to bed with a roof over their heads and are able to give their children a stable environment within which they can thrive.”

GSH is a 45-year-old provider of critical affordable housing services in northern Virginia, which has provided permanent housing solutions to thousands of struggling individuals and families through the support of donors and community volunteers. Parishioners of Good Shepherd Catholic Church founded the organization to support the marginalized throughout the community. GSH is now an independent 501(c)3 organization and a member of the Combined Federal Campaign.

Good Shepherd Catholic Church supports GSH in the following ways:

• Quarterly wrap-around service grants of $4,000, totaling $16,000 annually, to offer emergency assistance to families in GSH housing. The grants are provided with the stipulation that GSH finds matching funds.
• An annual backpack drive for residents of GSH housing. This year, parishioners donated 45 of the 90 backpacks GSH provided.
• A myriad of ongoing services, including annual support of GSH’s fundraising gala, volunteers as needed, and support from the local Knights of Columbus Mount Vernon Council #5998.
• This year, Good Shepherd Parish committed an additional $60,000, over a three-year period, to GSH’s capital campaign aimed at expanding the number of units they offer beyond the current 105.

“The Good Shepherd Housing Board of Directors has recognized and acknowledged Good Shepherd Catholic Church’s impactful and steadfast philanthropic and volunteer support of GSH and its affordable housing mission,” said Alexis Feeney Tallman, Chair, GSH Board of Directors. “Your support over the years exemplifies the spirit of community service, altruism and commitment to helping others represented by the Good Shepherd Philanthropy Award (Organization).”

In addition to its support of GSH, Good Shepherd Catholic Church also provides aid to those in need through ongoing emergency assistance and the Shepherd’s Gate Program. Shepherd’s Gate is an annual grant program the parish founded and administers that supports nonprofit organizations that reflect the parish mission to serve people in need, to do justice where inequity exists, to stand for human dignity, and to promote peace. Recipients of these grants include The Car Ministry, Culmore Clinic, New Hope Housing, and OAR of Arlington, Alexandria and Falls Church. GSH was a longtime recipient of the Shepherd’s Gate grant. The parish expanded its support of GSH by creating the quarterly, dedicated grant to provide ongoing assistance to families in need.

For more information on Good Shepherd Catholic Church, visit here.

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The Catholic Diocese of Arlington was established on August 13, 1974, and is home to 71 parishes and more than 460,000 Catholics. There are currently 276 priests serving in the Diocese and 45 seminarians discerning a priestly vocation. The Diocese has 37 parish (K-8) schools, four diocesan high schools, four independent Catholic schools and five free-standing (not connected with a parish school) pre-schools, serving more than 17,000 students.
The Diocese includes the seven cities of Alexandria, Fairfax, Falls Church, Fredericksburg, Manassas, Manassas Park, and Winchester and the 21 counties of Arlington, Clarke, Culpeper, Fairfax, Fauquier, Frederick, King George, Lancaster, Loudoun, Madison, Northumberland, Orange, Page, Prince William, Rappahannock, Richmond, Shenandoah, Spotsylvania, Stafford, Warren and Westmoreland.