Catholic Charities West Virginia (CCWVa) will host its 11th Annual Shining a Light on Hope Gala in a virtual format this year. The Gala will broadcast on Tuesday, March 16 at 7:00 p.m. on WTRF-7 in Wheeling and on CCWVa’s website at: www.CatholicCharitiesWV.org/Gala2021.
“This is a unique chance for our whole community to peek behind the scenes and learn more about how we serve this region. And we’re continuing our tradition of recognizing leaders in the community who demonstrate true Charity in Action with a special award,” said Beth Zarate, CCWVa President and Chief Executive Officer.
CCWVa offers a network of services supporting infants to seniors. The agency collaborates with individuals and community partners to support people who need food, hospitality, utility bill assistance, child care assistance, home care services and much more.
“This year the pandemic hit our clients especially hard. Our awardees stepped up in a profound way, helping us provide almost triple the assistance in comparison to the prior year,” said Zarate.
The recipients of the 2021 Charity in Action Award are David Rose (Wheeling), Bernard Twigg (Glen Dale), and St. Vincent de Paul Parish School (Wheeling).
David Rose has volunteered with Catholic Charities Neighborhood Center for over 14 years. He works in the kitchen, coordinates food drives, and welcomes people to the day shelter warming room in the winter.
Since March 2020 when the pandemic hit, David has tirelessly dedicated his time to serving the most vulnerable. He is at the Catholic Charities Neighborhood Center five days each week, helping prepare about 300 meals each day. Neighbors who are homebound and experiencing homelessness benefit daily from his compassionate service.
“David personifies charity in action. His service to those in need illustrates his commitment to Catholic Charities’ mission,” said Trish Whitelatch, Assistant Neighborhood Center Coordinator.
Bernard Twigg’s service to the Catholic Church and his community has been recognized even by Pope Francis: in 2018, he received the Benemeriti Medal, which means “well merited.”
Catholic Charities West Virginia joins the Pope in honoring Bernie for his dedication to their mission. His service on the CCWVa Board of Directors is marked by enthusiasm, and demonstrates his commitment to living out his values.
“Bernie treats others with dignity and respect, and he is a man of honor and integrity,” said Bryan Minor, Director of Administrative Services for the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston, who nominated Bernie for this award.
St. Vincent de Paul Parish School
The faculty, staff and students of St. Vincent de Paul Parish School have been serving neighbors at the Catholic Charities Neighborhood Center since the mid-1990s. Eighth grade students in particular cook and serve meals, and lead the school community in supporting the food pantry with periodic food drives.
Christine Anghie, Assistant Principal, coordinates the partnership between the school and Catholic Charities. A primary goal for the school is to teach students that service to others is their primary mission as Catholics.
“We’re blessed to have Saint Vincent School as a community partner to help us serve our neighbors,” said Trish Whitelatch, Assistant Neighborhood Center Coordinator.
“We are grateful for and inspired by many partners who walk this journey with us, and we’re honored to recognize these dedicated people,” said Zarate.
Proceeds from the Gala support CCWVa’s programs and services in 17 counties in northern West Virginia. As part of the Gala, CCWVa will host a virtual auction. The auction will be available at bidpal.net/CCWVa from March 14-21, closing at 9:00 p.m. on March 21.
The Gala is presented through the generosity of lead sponsor, the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston; and major sponsor, WVU Medicine.
More details about the event are available at: www.CatholicCharitiesWV.org/Gala2021.