Opportunities to Serve

The opportunity of doing great things does not come very often, but at every moment, we can do little acts with great love. - St. Francis DeSales
As followers of Christ, we are each called through our Baptism to serve our sisters and brothers in our parish, our community, our country, and the world. Below are some of the ways in which OLGC reaches out and through which you can fulfill this baptismal call. We believe that God has given every person gifts for bringing about the Reign of God: our natural-born strengths and talents, the skills and abilities that we’ve developed over time, the desire to do something meaningful with our lives. As members of the Body of Christ, we need each other so that we, the Church, might be the difference in the world that God has called us to be.

It is our hope that every parishioner is given the opportunity to discover and develop his/her God-given gifts.

Service to the Parish

Bereavement Ministry (Funeral Luncheons)

Volunteers provide and serve a luncheon in DeSales Hall (or in the family’s home, if preferred) following a funeral. This is done gratis and gives the family of the deceased some peace of mind at a time of distress.

Contact: Merle Senyk 703.896.7402

Faith Formation Assistance

Sponsors are needed to share a little of their time and faith for those who are becoming Catholics.

Contact: Sr. Janice, 703.896.7418

Catechists and Assistants are needed for a variety of Faith Formation sessions. OLGC encourages catechists to obtain certification through the Diocese of Arlington. Financial support is available to help cover the cost of training.

Contact: Amy Winkler, 703.896.7414

Liturgical Ministries

Become involved in a variety of different ways visit the Liturgy & Worship page for more info.

Contact: Gerard, 703.896.7411

Pillars Program

Pillars Program is a program that reaches out to parishioners who are unable to come to church on a regular basis to make them feel more a part of our community. Some of these people are served by the Sick and Homebound Ministry, but otherwise contact with their fellow parishioners is limited. Many of them are pillars of OLGC, who helped to build the parish, going back to before we had a real school or church. The Pillars Program brings OLGC to them so they can continue to feel a part of our community.

Contact: Fr. John Dolan, OSFS

Seasoned Citizens Luncheon

OLGC School and CCF families generously prepare meals for the “Seasoned Citizen’s Luncheons”. Between 85-100 Seniors attend these afternoons of good food, friendship, and entertainment.

This is a way for the families of OLGC to thank parish seniors for their support of our school and facilities. In addition to preparing food, the children in the younger grades often perform during the luncheons. Their smiling faces and angelic voices bring such joy. The Girl Scout Troops of our Parish also prepare table decorations and take-home gifts. All the help with cooking and serving is greatly appreciated and certainly needed. Thank you for your generosity.

Contact:
Alison Galbraith to be added to food requests
Heidi Snyder to volunteer to work, 703.560.4954

Special Needs Ministry

Our Special Needs Ministry is seeking additional adult and high-school age volunteers for the Saturday morning respite program for children with special needs. Experience with children with disabilities is preferred, but not required.

Volunteer training sessions will be held October 5th and 19th from 7:00-8:30 pm in Classroom A.

Respite program dates are Saturday Nov 4, Apr 28, and May 19. A planning and material prep meeting will be held the Thursday evening before each respite date.

Contact: Amy Winkler 703.896.7414

Volunteering with Children

There are requirements for adult volunteers having "substantial contact with children".

Visit Volunteering with Children webpage for info.

Drives & Collections

Bake Sales

Recognizing and wanting to help alleviate the needs of those unfortunate among us, the Women of OLGC have a bake sale every November, donating all proceeds to the St. Vincent de Paul Society, who distributes the funds to where the need is greatest. We can in this way help to relieve the pain of hunger or to pay utilities. The need is great and all of the profits are used for this purpose.

Contact: Mary Pat Egan

Food Drives

First Sunday of the month food is collected for CHO.

Second Sunday of the month food is collected for Christ House.

Fourth Friday of the month food is collected for SOME.

In June a food drive for Britepaths is conducted.

Coat Drive

When the weather gets cooler, usually in September, the annual Coat Drive begins. Parishioners are asked to donate clean, gently used coats, gloves, and hats for the needy so that they can have a safe winter. All donations go to local distribution and care centers for those in need. Donations should be dropped off in the parish Administration Building. Watch for a notice in the Bulletin to know when the drive begins each Fall.

Contact: Joseph Paquette

Diaper Collections

Diaper Drives are held periodically at OLGC to help poor families who have babies and toddlers. Diapers are expensive and cannot be purchased with most government sponsored food vouchers. The diapers we collect are given to local charities that distribute them to families who struggle to afford diapers. Some drives even accept open packages of diapers. Watch the Bulletin to find out when OLGC is collecting diapers.

Contact: Merle Senyk 703.896.7402

Giving Tree

Each Advent Season a Christmas tree is placed in the Narthex with tags on it. The tags are from 15 different needy organizations: Genesis Health Care (pediatric & geriatrics), retired priest and nuns, OLGC sick and homebound, Alternative House, HOPE, homeless, CHO, social concerns, Latino needs, Birthright, St. Vincent de Paul, contributions for food cards, Fairfax unwed mothers.

Please choose 1 or more tags, purchase the item and return them to the Narthex by Dec 18th when we will prepare the distribution.

We ask you to please continue donations for food cards and the orphans at Iliff using the envelopes on the tree. Other monetary donations are always welcome; please deposit them in the box by the tree or the collection basket or the Admin. Building, specifying what charity you wish to help. You make us proud to be working with you again.

We only hope and pray that your generosity will again reflect the outstanding community spirit of OLGC.

Contact: Mike & Mary Pat Egan, 703.938.0567

Medical Brigade

OLGC helps the Virginia Medical Brigade collect medical supplies that doctors take on mission trips to Central America. Donations are needed of wheelchairs, walkers, canes, crutches, braces, white bed linens (twin size flat only – not fitted), new or slightly used sneakers, and unopened, over the counter medications. Watch the Bulletin to find out when items are being collected.

Contact: Merle Senyk 703.896.7402

Christmas in July

Christmas in July Baby clothes and items are collected for crisis pregnancy centers and local moms in need. A tree with tags identifying specific needs is set up in the Narthex the last two weekends in June. Parishioners take a tag and bring the items to OLGC. These Items are distributed at the Donut Social the first Sunday of July.

Contact: Betsy Argauer, 703.255.3744

Stamp Drive

Please collect canceled postage stamps. Commemorative and foreign stamps, and those with high value are highly desirable. The most important thing to remember is that a 1/4" border of paper must remain around the stamps, otherwise they will be discarded. Every year many are thrown away because the margins of the stamps were damaged due to trimming too closely.

Your donations will be sent to the Sisters of the Holy Cross in Notre Dame, Indiana where they are processed by volunteers and sold. The profits are used by the Sisters to minister to the underserved people of the United States as well as in various locations around the world.

Also desirable are abandoned stamp albums and collections, unused stamps and other philatelic items such as First Day Covers, Souvenir Programs, etc.

Please deposit your items in the designated basket just inside the entrance to the Administration Office. Thank you so much for lighting your candle to brighten the world for the poor among us!

Contact: Marge Van Lierde 703.790.5460

Service to the Community

Adopt-A-Family

Adopt-a-Family is a parish Christmas program that provides presents to needy families, including recent refugee families, referred from OLGC, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, Catholic Charities, Vienna public schools, and others. Individuals, families, and groups from OLGC parish and school adopt these families and purchase the gifts. Each year over 60 families receive gifts through the OLGC Adopt-a-Family program.

Volunteer Opportunities: Volunteers are needed every December to adopt families and purchase gifts from their wish lists. Volunteers are also needed to help with the logistics of moving gifts from the Church to storage and then to the counselors or family contacts who will deliver the gifts to the families.

Contact: Fran Davenport 703.242.7440 or Karen Booze 703.919.9653

Blood Drive

We arrange for the INOVA Bloodmobile to come to OLGC several times a year so that parishioners can donate blood conveniently before or after Sunday morning Masses. Our participation entitles any OLGC parishioner to receive blood.

Contact: Merle Senyk 703.896.7402

Britepaths (formerly Our Daily Bread)

Britepaths is a volunteer-based organization focused on easing the plight of low-income residents in Fairfax County. They work to identify and address the unmet fundamental needs of area residents and empowers the community to help people maintain self-sufficiency.

In June a food drive for Britepaths is conducted. Volunteers assist with the collection, sorting, bagging, and delivery of groceries.

Contact: Jane Heishman or Peggy Loudin

Catholic Charities

Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Arlington seeks to implement the Church’s mission of social justice in ways that strengthen individuals, families, and communities. It does this by providing services and resources to all in need, convening the Catholic community to fulfill our mission of social justice, and advocating for social justice.

OLGC supports Catholic Charities financially through an annual second collection at Masses, and provides office space for Catholic Charities social workers who provide counseling here at OLGC. Also, individual parishioners volunteer with several of Catholic Charities’ programs, and the Women’s Club assists with programs too (see Christ House).

Visit Catholic Charities for info.

Christ House

Christ House is run by Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Arlington. Christ House provides food to the hungry, shelter to the homeless, and clothing to those in need. It helps individuals recognize their abilities, develop self-sufficiency, and maintain their self-respect. Christ House offers limited assistance to individuals needing help to pay their rent, utility bills, prescription bills, and other expenses. Food is collected at OLGC and delivered on the second Sunday of the month.

A team of volunteers provide dinner once a month to Christ House. Please join us in this ministry.

Contact: Patty Orfini

Committee for Helping Others (CHO)

CHO was organized in 1969 by a group of concerned churches and individuals to provide simple, loving charity to those in need of goods and services they are unable to provide for themselves or obtain from government social services organizations. Membership in CHO is open to all churches, synagogues, civic and service organizations, as well as concerned citizens in the community. CHO provides the following to people in need who live in Vienna, Oakton, Dunn Loring, and Merrifield:

  • Emergency financial assistance
  • Emergency food aid through the CHO food closet
  • Clothing though the CHO clothes closet
  • Furniture through the CHO furniture closet

OLGC and our parishioners support CHO in many ways, including:

  • First Sunday of the month food collection for the CHO food closet
  • June food drive to help stock the CHO food closet during summer months
  • October collection to buy food cards for CHO to distribute to families for Christmas dinner
  • Twice a year OLGC parishioners help pickup and deliver donated furniture to the CHO furniture closet

Volunteer Opportunities: Volunteers are always needed to donate food and to help deliver donations to CHO. Watch the Bulletin for announcements of other needs.

Contact Merle Senyk 703.896.7402 with questions about OLGC’s support of CHO, or visit CHO website for info or call 703.281.7614.

Knight of Columbus

The Knights of Columbus is the world's largest Catholic fraternal service organization dedicated to providing charitable services, promoting Catholic education and Catholic public policy positions, and actively defending Catholicism in various nations. Members from OLGC and St. Mark parishes are part of the Santa Maria Council #4654 located in the heart of Vienna, VA.

Meetings are held on the second Thursday of every month at 8:30 pm.

Contact: Grand Knight or visit Santa Maria Council website for info.

The Lamb Center

The Lamb Center is a daytime drop-in center for the poor and homeless in central Fairfax County and Fairfax City. It provides counseling, breakfast and lunch, hot showers, laundry, AA meetings, and more. The Lamb Center’s mission is to serve the poor and homeless, transform lives, and share God’s love.

OLGC and our parishioners support The Lamb Center in many ways, including:

  • The Women’s Club provides a hot breakfast the second Monday of every month
  • The Women’s Club coordinates the donation of underclothes and other items
  • Sr. Janice provides spiritual counseling at The Lamb Center

Volunteer Opportunities: Volunteers are needed to prepare or purchase breakfast items for the monthly hot breakfast. Watch the Bulletin for announcements of other needs.

Contact: Debbie Gougen Ellis on how to help through OLGC or visit The Lamb Center website for info.

OLGC School Outreach Projects

The School participates in many service activities.

Visit School Webpage for info.

Our Lady's Rosary Makers

Our Lady's Rosary Makers has been active for the past 38 years. We meet in the St. Joseph Center the first Monday of every month (except on holidays when the parish is closed). Members make chain and cord rosaries by hand, which are then distributed to parish members as needed and to several missions around the world. We thank the Women of OLGC who pays for our supplies and mailings. All are welcome to help.

Contact: Dolly DesJardins

Prayer Shawl Ministry

Since 2012, OLGC’s Prayer Shawl Ministry has welcomed everyone interested in knitting or crocheting for those who are ill, elderly, or in need. We also knit and crochet for Catholic Charities’ Prison Ministry. We meet on most Thursday’s from 9:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. in the St. Joseph Center. We do not generally meet on holidays or during the summer.

Please join us if you would like to be a part of our ministry. Those who are interested in learning to knit or crochet are also welcome. And, we are happy to accept donations of yarn and supplies.

Contact: Elizabeth Wonder

Respect Life Ministries

The Pro-Life Committee is responsible for parish activities and involvement in Diocesan events, such as the National March for Life, the Life Chain, reviewing and recommending current pro-life literature to the parish, and other area events that affect our parish and community.

Pro-Life Speaker the Women of OLGC and Pro-Life Committee sponsor a pro-life speaker. There is a talk followed by questions and answers. Topics have included end-of-life issues, abortion, legislative decisions, and sonograms as a life-saving tool. This is usually in January.

March for Life We organize a bus to go to the March for Life. Sign-up in the Narthex the 2 weekends before the March, which is typically on or near the date of January 22nd.

Mother's Day Roses and Father's Day Bookmarks Donations are requested to raise money to benefit a Pro-Life cause.

Christmas in July Baby clothes and items are collected for crisis pregnancy centers and local moms in need. A tree with tags identifying specific needs is set up in the Narthex the last two weekends in June. Parishioners take a tag and bring the items to OLGC. These Items are distributed at the Donut Social the first Sunday of July.

Respect Life Sunday and Life Chain takes place in over 1,500 communities across North America. Life Chain may be the simplest pro-life witness ever conceived, and one of the most popular. Participants congregate for 90 minutes at busy intersections holding pro-life signs and praying, forming a veritable chain of life in solemn witness for the preborn individuals lost to abortion every day of the year. Life Chain takes place on the first Sunday in October in Falls Church at Broad and Washington from 2-3:30 pm. It is a peaceful, prayerful witness to being pro-life.

Contact: Betsy Argauer, 703.255.3744

40 Days for Life A peaceful, prayerful vigil is kept for 40 days across the country outside of abortion mills. There is usually one in the Spring and one in the Fall. OLGC tries to commit to one of the 40 days to sign up parishioners to take a one-hour slot to pray. Contact: 40daysfallschurch@gmail.com

Society of St. Vincent de Paul

OLGC’s Conference of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul has been a part of our parish community since 1998 and is part of the Arlington Diocese Council of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul. Our mission is to grow spiritually and in fellowship while providing person-to-person assistance to neighbors in need. Volunteers, called Vincentians, help the needy by providing financial and material assistance, referrals to government and community organizations, and meeting with and listening to those who come to us in need.

Volunteer Opportunities: SVdP meets the first and third Wednesday of every month at 7:30 p.m. in the lower level of DeSales Hall. Most of our volunteers are caseworkers who spend one day a month answering the calls that come into our helpline. These Vincentians are responsible for taking care of the cases that arise from those calls. Many of the cases are resolved the same day or within a couple of days, but others take longer. You do not need experience to be a helpline volunteer. Training and a mentor are provided. We also need resource volunteers such as Spanish speakers, lawyers with experience in areas such as immigration and family law, financial advisors, etc. Finally, we are always in need of monetary donations so that we can continue to do the work we do.

Contact: Laurie Trainer 703.734.9656 or visit SVdP webpage for info.

So Others Might Eat (SOME)

SOME, Inc. provides direct services to help the poor and destitute of Washington, DC.

OLGC provides food for one breakfast 300 to 500 people. On the fourth Friday of the month the food is collected and the next day it is delivered to SOME. Volunteers are needed to transport the donated food from Vienna to DC.

Contact: Anna Somers

Youth WorkCamps

The Junior High WorkCamp is part of our Confirmation preparation at OLGC that engages our 7th and 8th graders in forms of service, whether at local senior parishioners homes or at nearby charitable organizations, and also in retreat segments to help them grow in their understanding of the importance of their faith and in the sacraments. Our Jr. High students assist the community in the summer during two different weeks of service.

Adult volunteers are always needed to assist in leading and driving the teams.

Contact: Derek Rogers, Director of Youth Ministry, 703.896.7409

The High School WorkCamp is a weeklong service opportunity for teens to travel on the east coast to help others in need. Home repair is a big part of this excursion but spending time with the residents and sharing the Gospel is at the center of this service. Generally, this mission trip is a non-denominational camp and our Catholic students learn that with every Christian tradition, there is the heart to love and to serve our fellow brother and sister.

Contact: Derek Rogers, Director of Youth Ministry, 703.896.7409, visit Youth Ministry webpage for more info.

Outreach Events

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Youth Room
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Youth Room
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Youth Room