Following St. Joseph Parish's Mission Statement:
"… a welcoming family of believers who:
witness the gospel,
are committed to our Baptismal call to Discipleship in Jesus Christ,
and further the Kingdom through our ministry and worship".
St. Joseph Cares members work to serve the needy residents of Portage County and have logged hundreds of cases ranging from utility payments, payment of security deposits, payment of back rent to avoid eviction, the purchase of food, supplies, and medicines, car repairs, gasoline, etc. Most cases are referred to us from Catholic Charities, the Salvation Army, and Family & Community Services of Portage County, with payments made to landlords, utility companies, etc. and not the client. Since inception, they have collected and distributed over $90,000 with most of the donations coming from monthly parish collections.
Original formed as a St. Vincent de Paul Society, the changed it's name to St. Joseph Cares when regulations concerning being tax exempt arose (refer to history below).
Collections for their work are usually held the second full weekend of each month following each of the Masses. They meet on the first Tuesday of month at St. Joseph's Church and welcome new members to join them in their work. Monthly contributions are made to Portage County Catholic Charities and the the 4C's Food Cupboard (Crestwood Coalition for Community Care). In addition to providing helping those in need, the group is currently involved in several ministry activities including:
Adoption of several families at Christmas time, working to make their days special by providing gifts and food.
St. Joseph Cares also serves those who use the Phyllis Zumkehr Portage County Clothing Center on the second and fifth Tuesday of each month from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. A program of Family and Community Services, the Portage County Clothing Center provides gently used clothing as available to low income families and individuals at no charge and also reduces the waste stream by recycling used clothing. Donations of clothing in good condition (clean, folded right side out; put in bags, boxes or on hangers; labeled-men, women, children) are accepted at the Center (3377 St. Rt. 59, Ravenna, Ohio 44266) during hours of service: Monday-Friday 10:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m.; Tuesday Evenings 6:00-8:00 p.m.; 2nd Saturday of each month 10:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. clothes that are clean, folded and in manageable boxes. For more information, please call 330-296-0503.
On the third Wednesday evening of each month, they entertain the folks of the Arbors of Streetsboro (formerly Maplewood Care Center) with a Bingo Night. An hour and a half is spent with the residents, who get great pleasure form their attendance. Bingo gifts and refreshments are also supplied (donations appreciated!).
The group sends care packages to members of our parish who are serving in the military. If you have a son, daughter, or spouse who is currently serving and would appreciate this outreach, please forward their contact information to Angi Daczko. In addition, those who have lost a loved one or who are on our prayer intention list are sent a card from this group.
In 2016/2017 an effort to bring more awareness to the addiction epidemic was also taken on. Bulletin blurbs highlight area programs and events to address this problem.
Start Talking Portage
Start Talking Portage is a local group of public and private Portage County residents dedicated to the critical fight against drug addiction. The coalition partners include resources from county medical, health and rehabilitation, law enforcement, local clergy, and private citizens. The group sponsors awareness about this epidemic through meetings, drug prevention programs and presentations. Look for the flyer in the Narthex that highlights upcoming events in Portage and surrounding counties. Start Talking Portage meets on the fourth Thursday of each month at 6:00 p.m. at Christ Lutheran Church, S.R. 44 in Mantua. All are welcome. Please join them. Everyone is touched by this disease. Everyone has a voice. (Upcoming Event: Hidden in Plain Sight, Hiram Christian Church, Monday, April 24 @ 6:00 p.m.). Please visit www.mental-health-recovery.org to view/download their Addiction Resource Guide.
Joe Daczko (President), Jan Herman (Vice President), Deborah Mazanec (Secretary), Angi Daczko (Treasurer), Kathy Hogue, Rev. Edward Stafford (Pastor), Bill Cleary, Monica Fratus, Irene Welling.
Collections: Monica Fratus, Pat Myers, Patrick Myers, Pat Smith, Dolores Skupski, Marian Stemnock, Lyle & Lynda Tayerle
Bingo Volunteers: Mickee Hawkins, Bob & Marlene Hornyak, Jeanine Maczko, Irene Welling, Blanche Wetherholt
Clothing Center Volunteers: David Bultinck, Bob & Carol Hetzel, Pat Smith, Monica Fratus
The Saint Joseph Mantua (Ohio) Conference of the Saint Vincent de Paul Society was formed in September 1997.
Notified by the Diocese that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has determined that local SVDP conferences are not be exempt from paying taxes on donations unless each local conference is listed on the national SVDP registry. Our Diocese asked that we join the national council or stop using the SVDP name. The changes that joining would require were not ones that our members were willing to make.
After consultation with Father Garvey, it was agreed that the St. Joseph Mantua Conference of the St. Vincent DePaul Society will immediately change our name to St. Joseph Cares, continuing with the same mission: "… a welcoming family of believers who: witness the gospel, are committed to our Baptismal call to Discipleship in Jesus Christ, and further the Kingdom through our ministry and worship".