The Sixth Annual Breakfast with Friends on May 27 raised more than $100,000 to support L’Arche St. Louis’ mission of operating an inclusive community for adults with intellectual disabilities in the St. Louis area. Access the event webpage at larchestlouis.org/breakfast to view the program and more information about the speakers and sponsors.
More than 100 runners and walkers of all ages hit the trail or the treadmill to defeat hunger for Sts. Joachim and Ann Care Service last month. The second annual de-FEET Hunger Virtual 5K raised more than $3,200 to help feed local families in need. “More families than ever are struggling to provide the most basic needs for their families, including shelter and food. We are seeing families who have never had to ask for help before,” said Pam Struckhoff, executive director at Sts. Joachim and Ann Care Service. Sts. Joachim and Ann Care Service Food Pantry remained open twice a week and adapted to a drive-thru service during the COVID-19 crisis. Starting June 17, the Care Service Client Choice Food Pantry will re-open its doors to allow families to shop for the foods that work best for their families. The faith-based social service organization is the largest comprehensive social support agency serving St. Charles, Lincoln, and Warren counties.
National Merit Scholarship Corporation recently announced more than 3,100 winners of National Merit Scholarships financed by U.S. colleges and universities, including 10 from Catholic high schools in the archdiocese. Officials of each sponsor college selected their scholarship winners from among the Finalists in the 2021 National Merit Scholarship Program who plan to attend their institution. These awards provide between $500 and $2,000 annually for up to four years of undergraduate study at the institution financing the scholarship. The winners include Kathryn M. Theissen, Bridget A. Noonan and Emily K. Gurle of Cor Jesu Academy; Amelia H. Schneider of St. Joseph Academy; Lucas S. Missey, Thomas H. Matyiko, James E. Morefield and Alexander D. Thro of St. Louis University High School; Kyle W. Johnson of Chaminade College Preparatory School; and Ryan C. Mitchell of Saint Louis Priory School.
Appeals court strikes down abortion law
A panel of judges with the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has stopped Missouri from enforcing a sweeping law that bans abortions at several gestations, starting on or after eight weeks of pregnancy. HB 126, known as the “Missouri Stands for the Unborn Act,” would place further restrictions on abortions in the state, including a ban on abortions after eight weeks of pregnancy. The law also has a ban on abortions at later gestations, if the eight-week ban is struck down by the courts.
Other provisions include a “trigger ban” that would ban all abortions in Missouri if Roe vs. Wade is overturned; a ban on abortions for reasons including Down syndrome, race or gender; a requirement for a second custodial parent to be notified when a minor is seeking an abortion, with certain exceptions; and a recognition that God is the author of life and that Missouri is a “sanctuary of life” that protects pregnant women and unborn children.
A three-judge panel on the appeals court heard arguments in September over the law, which was passed in 2019. Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt said he will ask the U.S. Supreme Court to review Missouri’s abortion law after the latest ruling.
“My son Stephen has shown me the inherent beauty and dignity in all life, especially those with special needs,” said Schmitt, whose son has rare genetic condition, autism and epilepsy. “While we’re disappointed in the 8th Circuit’s decision, their decision does provide an avenue for this case to be heard by the Supreme Court, and we plan to seek review in the Supreme Court. I have never and will never stop fighting to ensure that all life is protected.”
Biking for Babies
This July, more than 50 college students and young adults plan to cycle a combined 2,700 miles for the babies, women and families served by 42 pregnancy resource centers. Groups will leave from Green Bay, Wisconsin; Columbus, Ohio; Natchez, Mississippi; and Holly, Colorado, and converge in St. Louis five days later, July 17. Biking for Babies aims to raise $225,000 for the pregnancy resource centers, which would surpass the million-dollar mark contributed in 12 years. The young adults on the ride train for months, learning about their local pregnancy resource centers and sharing the details of the centers’ mission: to provide free support and resources to the women and families who are experiencing an unplanned, difficult, or at-risk pregnancy. For information or to support the ride, visit www.bikingforbabies.com, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.