Catholic Charities HIV/AIDS Task Force For The Archdiocese of Chicago Mission Statement
Empowered by the tradition of the Catholic Church and the teachings of Jesus Christ, the HIV/AIDS Task Force is committed to providing leadership and direction in the ministry to persons infected with and affected by HIV/AIDS.
We strive to fulfill this mission through activities which:
- Insure compassionate, competent service to all persons affected by HIV/AIDS;
- Manifest our solidarity with those who are affected;
- Increase and sustain awareness of the pandemic;
- Help to reduce the spread of the disease through education;
- Call upon all Catholic parishes, social service agencies, health care and educational institutions to provide an environment of hope, healing, and compassion for all who are affected by HIV/AIDS.
Convened in 1986 by the late Joseph Cardinal Bernardin, the Task Force continues to be vital to the core of the HIV/AIDS Ministry. Since first formed, the Task Force and its membership have evolved as has the face of the pandemic, and the members continue their commitment to providing leadership and direction in the ministry to persons infected with and affected by HIV/AIDS.
Some of the efforts and activities of the Task Force include:
- Development, production and distribution of an HIV/AIDS education and outreach DVD, The HIV/AIDS Pandemic and the Christian Response*, sent to all parishes in the Archdiocese; *both the English and Spanish versions are available on the Catholic Charities web site;
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- Collaboration with the Archdiocesan Office of Catholic Schools on the HIV/AIDS Curriculum Guide K-12 and the recent integrated Health/HIV/AIDS Curricula;
- Offering free and confidential, on site HIV/AIDS counseling and screening at our Catholic Charities health fairs;
- Offering HIV/AIDS education/outreach presentations to varied groups;
- Developing and disseminating current educational literature consistent with Catholic social teaching.
- Participation in World AIDS Day events and celebrations;
- Participation in the annual AFC AIDS Walk/Run;
- Speaker’s Bureau:
1. Medical Issues: Paul O’Keefe, M.D.
2. Medical Issues and Latina Medical Issues: Patricia Herrera, M.D.
3. Pastoral Care Issues: Ray Sousa, MPS, NACC
4. Persons Living with HIV/AIDS: Alexian Brothers AIDS Ministry
PLEASE CALL 312-948-6500 for information regarding the above resources.
The current members of the Task Force, who represent a variety of advocacies include:
- Peggy A. Arizzi, LCSW, Catholic Charities
- Antonio Ponce, Deacon, Our Lady of Charity
- Cheryl Potts, Executive Director, Alexian Brothers AIDS Ministry
- Rita Kattner, D-Min., Archdiocesan Office for Councils/CRHP
- Dan Lunney, MTS, BCC, (Advisor), Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center
- Maureen Murphy, LCSW, Catholic Charities
- Donna Oborski, BSN, RN, FNC, Advocate Health Care Parish Nurse Ministry
- Paul O’Keefe, M.D., Loyola University Health Systems
- Rev. Thomas Pelton, Psy.D., Maternity BVM Parish, Chicago
- Ray Sousa, MPS, NACC, Access Community Health Network
- LaTeasha Ward, MPA, Archdiocesan Office for Catholic Schools
- Patricia M. Drott, MS, BSN, RN, Catholic Charities