Georgia Bulletin

The Newspaper of the Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta


Health Ministers Invited To Ecumenical Advent Day

Published November 16, 2006

The health ministries of All Saints Church, Dunwoody, and St. Luke’s Episcopal Church are sponsoring an ecumenical gathering on “Renewing Hope: An Advent Gathering for Health Ministry” on Wednesday, Dec. 6, from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The program, featuring speakers working in health ministry and social services, will be held at St. Luke’s, located at 435 Peachtree St., NE, Atlanta, and is open to all professionals, volunteers and others involved or interested in any aspect of health ministry.

Dolores Riccardi, R.N., director of All Saints’ health ministry program, said that the event will be an opportunity for people to come together in prayer and learn more about health ministry-related activities in churches, at Catholic Charities and at Saint Joseph’s Hospital, whether it be the counseling program at St. Luke’s or health fairs at parishes.

“We just want to have a spiritual renewal and networking opportunity and just to share” information, she said. “The purpose is to help identify people working in areas and share resources that might be available. We’re trying to open it up to anybody in the … greater Atlanta area.”

She noted that many people don’t even realize that Catholic Charities provides a wide variety of services, such as professional counseling, emergency assistance, and pregnancy, parenting and adoption support, to the entire community, not just to Catholics. “I’m trying to promote what Catholic Charities is doing in the community and how they can help.”

Some archdiocesan churches have health ministries that each operate independently, and the All Saints’ ministry, for example, offers programs including health education outreach and classes such as tai chi, yoga and exercising for those with arthritis.

The Advent program will begin with a gathering and continental breakfast from 9 to 9:30 a.m. followed by an opening Advent meditation by Rev. Gene H. Paradise, associate priest with senior pastoral care at St. Luke’s. From 9:45 to 10:45 a.m. Meg Moye, L.C.S.W, clinical director of St. Luke’s training and counseling center, will speak on “Renewing Hope through Support Groups.” Joe Galvin, administrator of service programs of Catholic Charities, and Beth Lever of the Center for Positive Aging will speak on “Renewing Hope Through Community Resources.” From 11:30 a.m. to noon there will be time for ecumenical prayer, followed by lunch and networking until 1 p.m. From 1 to 1:45 p.m. Riccardi and Joan Purdon, R.N., M.S.N., faith community nurse at St. Luke’s, will speak on “Renewing Hope as a Faith Community Nurse.” From 1:45 to 3 p.m. Sister Sally White, GNSH, M.Ed., M.P.S., of Saint Joseph’s Hospital, will speak on “Renewing Hope Within Ourselves During Advent.”

Pre-registration is required, and a $10 donation is requested. Contact Joan Purdon at St. Luke’s at (404) 873-7614 or or Dolores Riccardi at All Saints at (770) 393-3255 or