Category: Orlando

Kairos gives hope, faith to inmates

ORLANDO | The first time Father Leo Hodges, pastor of St. Andrew Parish in Orlando, stepped into a prison he was in college. He accompanied his parents on a “prayer and share” at Union Correctional Institution located in Raiford in the northern reaches of the state. It was just the beginning of Kairos, an ecumenical… Read more »

Knights of Columbus shine brightly in Florida

ORLANDO | The Florida State Knights of Columbus Convention was held May 25-27 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel and Conference Center in Orlando. In attendance were over 1,000 Knights and their families from across Florida and the Bahamas, along with six bishops and 12 priests. The theme, “Let Your Light Shine,” comes from the Gospel… Read more »

2018 Grads: Service and sports top student’s high school memories

LAKELAND | During her time in high school, Kourtney Jones played dozens of games of volleyball, basketball and softball, took classes including some for college credit and volunteered many hours with Special Olympics. But what the recent graduate of Santa Fe will most remember about her experience at the Lakeland high school is how much… Read more »

Family finds unexpected graces

ORLANDO | In 2013, Andrew’s family was fairly typical and not especially devout. They participated in the celebration of Mass every Sunday and their eldest was in faith formation at an early age. Then Andrew was diagnosed with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma, “a tumor located inside the brainstem that is a lot like a spider… Read more »

Transitional deacons prepare for ordination

ORLANDO | Bishop John Noonan will ordain Deacons Matthew Hawkins and Blake Britton to the order of priesthood May 26, 10 a.m., at St. James Cathedral in Orlando. Here the two men share their vocation stories and their journey to the priesthood. Deacon Hawkins was born in Miami, but considers himself an Orlando native. His… Read more »

Priest participates in meeting of Missionaries of Mercy

ORLANDO | Whether traveling, working with students at Bishop Moore Catholic High School or spending time out in the community, Franciscan Father Anthony Aarons is always ready to hear confessions. Ever since participating in an international meeting of the Missionaries of Mercy with Pope Francis April 7-11, Father Aarons has committed to bring a purple… Read more »

Orlando diocesan women’s council celebrates 50 years

ORLANDO | The Orlando Diocesan Council of Catholic Women has been a part of the diocese since its inception. The theme of this year’s annual convention in Ocala was “50 Years of Merciful Discipleship.” Founding members gathered alongside new ones April 28-30, with a goal of mentoring future leaders, deepening spiritual growth and serving the… Read more »

Students view life as a refugee

ORLANDO | For a third year, Catholic Charities of Central Florida’s Refugee Resettlement Program partnered with the social work department at the University of Central Florida to offer a hands-on experience demonstrating difficulties faced by refugees. The refugee simulation April 17 offered a glimpse into life as a refugee. In the first station, the participant… Read more »

Volunteers embark on ‘unexpected’ adventures

ORLANDO | LaShanna Tyson said, “yes” to a missionary adventure at the age of 45. While some full-time volunteer organizations welcome young adults into their ranks, Catholic Volunteers in Florida offers opportunities for people of all ages, and not just young adults. Now 47, Tyson is the oldest volunteer serving with Catholic Volunteers in Florida…. Read more »

Family embarks on journey to independence

ORLANDO | Shanaya Mims is what Catholic Charities of Central Florida caseworker Abigail Crocket describes as “a dream client.” Despite the curveballs life has thrown at Mims, her resilience has been rewarded and things are looking up for the first time in a long while. Mims came to Catholic Charities through a referral from the… Read more »