Cardinal Blase Cupich and Monsignor Michael Boland Bless and Dedicate Catholic Charities Peace Center and Garden in the Austin Community
Chicago, IL (May 23, 2018) – Cardinal Blase J. Cupich, Archbishop of Chicago, will join Monsignor Michael Boland, president of Catholic Charities, to bless and dedicate the new Father Augustus Tolton Peace Center, 5645 W. Corcoran Place, Chicago, on Thursday, May 24, 2018 at 2 p.m. The center is a social services resource and “peace hub” for violence prevention and trauma therapy programs.
“The Father Augustus Tolton Peace Center continues the legacy of its namesake who worked tirelessly for the poor and underserved to make his community stronger,” said Monsignor Michael Boland. “We welcome Austin residents to visit the center and receive the compassionate care, assistance and comfort they need and deserve.”
The 46,000 square-foot building and 51,000 square-foot site were gifts from the Austin Bank Corporation. Catholic Charities began offering programs at the center in December and has seen a steady increase in the number of clients and has expanded its services to meet their needs. The 17,000 square-foot Peace Garden, located adjacent to the center, is Catholic Charities’ gift to the Austin community and includes a moving sculpture by artist Timothy Schmalz entitled Thou Shall Not Kill that depicts Jesus weeping over a gunshot victim.
“We know that violence will not end in our society without a concerted effort to address its root causes,” said Cardinal Cupich. “At this center and throughout its network, Catholic Charities works to strengthen families, lift people out of poverty and help them develop life and employment skills. These ministries are our response to the Gospel call to show mercy and compassion to all we meet.”
Currently, more than 30,000 Austin residents are supported by Catholic Charities’ various services. The center will deepen and expand Catholic Charities’ impact in Austin with more services for youth, families and seniors with a focus on building peaceful communities. In addition to violence prevention and therapy programs, residents will benefit from dozens of additional services at the center, including financial assistance and counseling, public screening assistance, youth employment, pregnancy and parenting assistance, summer meals for children and elder care support.
For more information about the Father Augustus Tolton Peace Center, please visit www.catholiccharities.net.