The Works of Mercy Trust

recommended Nov2015


This past spring, the Bishop Joseph Ott Works of Mercy Trust Fund Board of Trustees issued grants to area non-profits whose staff and volunteers faithfully address needs in the Baton Rouge community with unique effectiveness and dedication, and Bishop Robert Muench personally presented the organizations their well-deserved grants. CommUnity Hands of Livingston Parish is one of the ministries the board is very pleased to support.

A nonprofit cooperative of nearly twenty Catholic and Protestant churches in Livingston Parish, CommUnity Hands “offers emergency assistance to those in need,” in particular with “utilities, food, medicine, housing and transportation.” An all-volunteer organization, CommUnity Hands assists forty families or more each month, a number that has grown steadily since the group first began ministry less than five years ago. Volunteers from participating churches work together to “meet the physical needs of people throughout Livingston Parish.” The experienced CommUnity Hands volunteer staff devotes extensive training to process applications with great care and to ensure donated resources address the needs of those who need help the most. Please call (225) 667-9015 to make your donation or to invest your time.




Recommended Resources
for Reflection and Study

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for additional recommendations.

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A Call to a Resource-full People

From the Stewardship Today Archives,
November 2006

By definition, a cornucopia is a symbol of considerable blessing, a cone-shaped container overflowing with the fruits of abundant harvest. Such a centerpiece often adorns the grand display of blessing found within a typical American Thanksgiving dining room. There is much to be thankful for, including the resources used to create meals of which much of the world can only dream. God has allowed us to produce and harness much of the globe’s natural resources, yet we tend to consume a great deal, as well. As noted in a recent study, “for many resources we are the world’s largest consumers.” We take the greatest share of corn and coffee, just as we do the largest share of oil and natural more


From St. Clement I, first century pope and martyr:

“We must take to heart from what stuff we were created, who we were, and what kind of creatures we were when we entered the world, as if from a tomb and from utter darkness. Having prepared for us bountifully before we were born, He who fashioned us and created us brought us into His world. Since, then, we owe all this to Him, we ought to give Him thanks for everything.”


Televised Mass

Catholic Life Television broadcasts the Tuesday Midday Mass, live from St. Joseph Cathedral at 12 Noon, and rebroadcasts the service at 6 PM. Visit for a variety of daily Catholic programming.

Diocesan News Page



local Nov2015

Following decades of almost unprecedented growth, St. John the Baptist Catholic Church has broken ground on new facilities at their well-established Zachary, Louisiana location near the northern edge of East Baton Rouge civil parish. “Continuing the Legacy of Faith,” the building plan includes a new church complete with seating for more than 800, reconciliation rooms, a spacious narthex ideal for gathering before and after Mass, Liturgical Ministry spaces, plus a covered drop off and improved church parking. In addition, as noted in the congregation’s informative program brochure, the parish “will also construct a 40-seat Adoration Chapel connected to the church by a beautifully landscaped cloister.”

A “Legacy of Faith” is an apt description for a Catholic Church family whose heritage stretches all the way back to the late 1700s. Area families gathered for Catholic worship and education for a century before the city of Zachary was incorporated in 1889. For generations now, St. John the Baptist has ministered to friends and neighbors in a city named one of “the Best Towns to Raise a Family in America.” The faithful who call St. John the Baptist home have contributed a great deal to ensure that promise. For additional information concerning St. John the Baptist of Zachary, and the mission work of Our Lady of the Assumption in Clinton, please take a moment and visit the website:



“Come, let us sing joyfully to the Lord; cry out to the rock of our salvation. Let us come before him with a song of praise, joyfully sing out our psalms. For the Lord is the great God, the great king over all gods, whose hand holds the depths of the earth; who owns the tops of the mountains. The sea and dry land belong to God, who made them, formed them by hand. Enter, let us bow down in worship; let us kneel before the Lord who made us. For he is our God, we are the people he shepherds, the sheep in his hands.”

(Psalm 95:1-7a; New American Bible, Revised Edition)


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Planned Giving

Have You Heard of Gift Planning?

You know there are many ways to support the ministries of the Diocese of Baton Rouge. Here’s one you may not know much about: With a little forethought, you can include a gift within your estate plan that supports our mission and provides you with tax benefits in return. Such gifts are known as “planned gifts” and they often provide you with two additional benefits:

  1. 1.Your gift is generally deferred until after your lifetime, so your current income isn’t affected.
  2. 2.With many planned gifts, you have the right to change your mind at any time throughout your lifetime, if

Many assume planned gifts are only for the wealthy. Far from the truth, planned gifts are for anyone with an estate. Might that include you? Well, if you have any belongings, then you have an estate. A gift in your will or revocable living trust is the most popular type of planned gift. This option is flexible and can be structured in a number of ways. It may be in your interest to find out.

For More Information

No matter which planned gift you choose, it is reassuring to know your donation will allow you to extend your ministry influence well into the future.

For additional information concerning Diocese of Baton Rouge Planned Giving options, please visit the “Plan My Legacy” page through the Office of Stewardship website:


Catholic Diocese of Baton Rouge

The US Conference of Catholic Bishops

The Vatican Website

Diocese of Baton Rouge Office of Stewardship

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Please Support the Bishop’s Annual Appeal

         and Thirty Years of Vital Ministry


main oct2015

 Click Here to Watch Video

Stewardship: A Louisiana Legacy

Glorify God & Serve Others:
The Thirtieth Anniversary BAA

Bishop Robert W. Muench’s message, from the anniversary brochure:

In 1985, beloved Bishop Stanley Ott initiated the Bishop’s Annual Appeal, an essential and far-reaching endeavor that has funded dozens of ministry efforts, has met the needs of thousands of your neighbors, and has spread the love of Jesus Christ throughout the region. In 2011, we celebrated the fiftieth anniversary year of our diocese’s founding, and this year we honor the birth of this invaluable appeal.

You have the opportunity to show God’s grace to others today, and your generous participation is as essential as ever. In this anniversary year, please choose to give, helping to shape the future of our diocese for generations to come. Please Glorify God and Serve Others with us, as we celebrate thirty years of vital ministry and continue the Lord’s work through the BAA.

The Stewardship of Prayer

prayer Nov2015Author of a Sure Path

Like explorers equipped with neither a compass nor a map, we seem at times to travel amid dense cultural timber, hampered by limbs that overshadow our steps and limit certainty and safety. We long for an open clearing, a sense that light will break through. Perhaps we’ve simply forgotten the source of our comfort and peace, the Great Guide of the heavens. The Psalmist David knew, and his words—recorded as Psalm 25—acknowledge a timeless reality, one just as real in our day. “Make known to me your ways, Lord; teach me your paths. Guide me in your truth and teach me. Good and upright is the Lord, who shows sinners the way, guides the humble rightly, and teaches the humble the way. All the paths of the Lord are faithful toward those who honor the covenant demands. The counsel of the Lord belongs to the faithful; the covenant instructs them.” more


The Great Float of 2002
... read more

The Stewardship of Ministry

ministry Nov2015Justice for All

In volume one of his prize-winning history of the American Civil Rights movement, Taylor Branch quoted Dr. Martin Luther King’s Letter from a Birmingham Jail. In turn, Dr. King had quoted from St. Thomas Aquinas. “An unjust law is a human law that is not rooted in eternal and natural law.” Questions of justice and injustice form the heart of the piece and the focus of the truism, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” The circumstances that generated the letter, its publication, and numerous responses to it, were only a few of the weighty events that helped define 1963 as an unforgettable year in American history. Debates regarding justice were clearly anything but new. . . .read more


A Creation for the Creator ... read more

The Stewardship of Finance

finance Nov2015Could We Give It All?


When offerings are taken, children regularly contribute their pennies. Because of their youth, we never assess the size of their gifts. Instead, we celebrate their participation in so important an element of worship. But, how would we respond if an adult did the same thing—to offer two small coins, for example? How might we react then? Unlike the Lord, we are unable to know the true attitude of anyone’s heart, any more than we can accurately appraise the balance in someone else’s checkbook. Nonetheless, large public gifts tend to capture our attention, even as meager offerings cause us to avert our gaze.. . .read more


God Will Not Let You Go Hungry ... read more


“Whatever our bodies may be doing, we should at the same time continually lift up our minds to God, which is the most acceptable form of prayer. For no matter which way we turn our steps, as long as our minds are turned to God, we clearly are not turned away from Him who is present everywhere.”                         

(St. Thomas More, 1478-1535, English Statesman and Catholic Martyr)


 “God feeds the birds, and daily food is provided to the sparrows; and to creatures that have no sense of divine things, there is no lack of drink or food. Do you think that to a Christian—to a servant of the Lord—to someone given to good works—to someone who is dear to the Lord—anything will be lacking? Do you imagine that the one who feeds Christ is not himself fed by Christ, or that earthly things will be lacking to those to whom heavenly and divine things are given?”


(St. Cyprian of Carthage, c. 200-258, North African Bishop and Martyr)


Stewardship Today is a monthly devotional newsletter designed to assist Catholics everywhere in developing a greater understanding of the role of stewardship in everyday life.
All we are, and all we possess, are gifts from God for our use and for the blessing of others. Through wise stewardship, we invest our time, our talents and our treasures to the glory of God.

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