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Outreach

Whether it’s feeding the hungry, providing clothing to the needy, or greeting visitors, St. Thomas the Apostle is committed to serving our neighbors in our local community and across the world.

The Beacon

The Beacon is a homeless shelter sponsored by the Diocese of Texas and the John S. Dunn Foundation at Christ Church Cathedral.

We have a dedicated team of volunteers who go on the 1st Sunday of each month, and have done so since it opened, to greet clients, prepare meals, and do laundry for the people in need.

Contact: Nick & Gail Roe

Click to open the items below to learn more about The Beacon’s programs.

MISSION

The mission of The Beacon is to provide essential and next-step services to restore hope and help end homelessness in Houston and is comprised of four core service programs.

THE BEACON DAY CENTER

The Beacon Day Center provides hot meels, private shower and bathroom facilities, and laundry services to over 600 clients a day, Friday through Monday.

BRIGID'S HOPE

Brigid’s Hope at The Beacon offers transitional housing and supportive services geared toward reducing the number of women returning to the criminal justice system. This 12-month program for homeless, non-violent, female offenders provides each client with a mentor, independent living, and life skill training.

THE CATHEDRAL CLINIC

The clinic is a partnership with Healthcare for the Homeless – Houston. Through the clinic, we provide primary healthcare, psychiatric treatment, and mental health counseling.

THE CATHEDRAL JUSTICE PROJECT

The Cathedral Justice Project at The Beacon provides pro bono legal aid to the homeless community. Often unresolved legal issues stand in the way of accessing government benefits or finding employment.

Food Ingathering

Every week, we use our St. Thomas food bags to collect nonperishable food items, baby diapers and wipes, soap, and toothpaste that are then donated to Interfaith Caring Ministries in League City.

Please bring your filled bags, leave them at the “Feed the Hungry” barrel, and pick up an empty bag for the next week.

Contact: Larry Hunter

Greeters

Greeters are volunteers who possess the gift of hospitality.

They welcome visitors and members as they arrive for services and other events at St. Thomas.

They seek to serve Christ in all persons by welcoming and introducing newcomers to the opportunities in which they might want to serve.

Contact: MaryRuth Greenwell

Habitat For Humanity

Habitat for Humanity is a Christian, non-profit housing ministry that builds affordable houses for low income families to purchase on favorable terms.

St. Thomas parishioners have for many years volunteered their time and talent to help build these houses.

We usually offer two opportunities each year to participate in building or providing lunch for the workers – Mid April and May.

No particular skills or tools are required.

If you would like to volunteer, watch for announcements each Spring giving specific information.

You may also support Habitat with a contribution during the Advent Market.

Days for Girls

Our Friendswood Chapter of Days for Girls (DFG) meets approximately 6-times each year, rotating among several churches in the Bay Area. Volunteers from these and other area churches put together the kits and add donated new washcloths, new underwear, bars of hotel-size soap and double-zipper plastic freezer bags to hold individual kits, which are shipped to the next recipients of our efforts.

Contact: Carolyn Judy

Every Girl. Everywhere. Period.

Days for Girls was founded in 2008 by Celeste Mergens, following a trip to Kenya. While working with a family foundation there, she visited an orphanage and learned that, once the girls started their periods, they couldn’t go to school during that time, because they had no feminine hygiene supplies. They remained in their dormitories, sitting on pieces of cardboard. This meant they missed up to 7-days of school each month – or 1/3 of the school year – and, eventually, most dropped out.

Celeste understood poverty, having come from a background of extreme impoverishment, abuse and chaos. But unlike the girls in Kenya, she’d always had feminine hygiene products. Fortunately, she was able to rise above her circumstances, determined not to be defined by the conditions surrounding her.

Upon returning home from Kenya, Celeste and her team, through trial and error, developed washable, reusable pads to provide a girl with her own kit containing all she would need to continue her schooling with hygiene and dignity. By 2018, the DfG kits – now designed to last 3-years – have reached one million girls in over 100 countries – including here in the United States! The kits are put together by volunteers who make pads, shields, liners and bags to hold all the items the girls need to take care of their own hygiene.

Today Days for Girls empowers women and girls around the globe by providing sustainable feminine hygiene solutions and health education. In area where women have been taught that menstruation is a curse and a reminder that they are somehow less, DfG is helping them to remember that their bodies are their own, and they are worthy of health, opportunity and dignity.
Learn more about Days for Girls at their website daysforgirls.org.

St. Vincent's House

St. Vincent’s House (STV) is an urban mission of the Episcopal Diocese of Texas.

Located in Galveston, Texas, St. Vincent’s House provides essential services at a single location to the disadvantaged, under-served and working poor. These services enhance the physical mental and spiritual well-being of the population served.

Services include medical care (preventive and acute), free/subsidized pre-school, emergency assistance, food pantry, transportation, alternative high school (both diploma and GED), adult education, emergency shelter and more.

The STV mission is to HOPE people — providing the help to create HOPE.

STV is a favorite outreach ministry for St. Thomas. We support STV through the Advent Market, ECW funds, food donations, Advent party gifts and our time, talent and treasure.

Contact: Vicki Buxton

Helping Hands Ministry

The Helping Hands Ministry was initiated in the late ‘70s/early ‘80s by members of the Episcopal Church Women (all women of St. Thomas are members of the ECW) to provide short-term assistance to St. Thomas members. Assistance is varied and depends upon the needs of the parishioner(s). The level and duration of the assistance is based upon the severity of the illness/injury, anticipated recovery time, the support of family and friends, and the resources of the parishioner(s).

Short-term assistance generally is limited to 2-weeks and includes:

  • Meals – generally limited to 2 per week;
  • Medical transportation – generally limited to services within the Clear Lake area and provided when family or friends are unable to provide same, or financial resources prevent use of public transportation (i.e., taxis, Uber, etc.);
  • Minor laundry and/or light housekeeping;
  • Identification of community-based resources (food take-out and delivery services, taxis, Uber, etc.)
  • Clergy and LEV visits

Should additional assistance be needed, the Helping Hands chairperson and the rector will meet to discuss participation of the ECW.

Contact: Carolyn Judy