A Cardinal’s Christmas: Cherished Holiday Tradition with Catholic Charities

Family at A Cardinal's Christmas

The Girotto Family at A Cardinal’s Christmas.

His Eminence Daniel Cardinal DiNardo gathered children around him to hear the Christmas story of the three kings who visited the Virgin Mother and baby Lord Jesus, told at the tenth annual A Cardinal’s Christmas on December 8 at River Oaks Country Club.

The festive fundraiser supported the crucial work of Catholic Charities, the social services arm of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston. The event concluded a yearlong observance of the organization’s 75th anniversary.

“We’re grateful to Cardinal DiNardo for making this event a priority each year during the holiday season,” said Cynthia N. Colbert, MSW, president and CEO of Catholic Charities.  “The Cardinal’s message to the children about the true meaning of Christmas helps them be mindful of Christ’s teachings about caring for others.”

A highlight of the luncheon came when guests were introduced to Tesa, a client of Catholic Charities’ Women Veteran Services program. Tesa shared the story of how she moved beyond challenging circumstances.  A five-year Navy veteran, Tesa served on the nuclear carrier U.S.S. Dwight D. Eisenhower.

Family enjoyed A Cardinal's Christmas.

Families enjoying A Cardinal’s Christmas together.

After returning to civilian life, she suffered an injury and as a result lost her job and then her home. In desperation, Tesa and her teenage son lived in her car until she found help through Catholic Charities.  After the Women Veteran Services program helped her with housing and other support, Tesa was able to return to school at Texas Southern University. She is working on her master’s degree and plans a career as a rehabilitation counselor.

The annual A Cardinal’s Christmas fundraiser supports programs such as pregnancy and parenting services, basic needs support for families in need, and affordable counseling services to families and children. These initiatives support the agency’s overall vision of helping people in need achieve self-sufficiency and live with dignity.

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