The gift of a safe home is a life-transforming blessing for a child like Fátima Fernández.

guatemala

An Advent Outreach for Your Parish

Cross Catholic Outreach is offering a meaningful Advent outreach to U.S. parishes this year. The program includes free educational resources and will allow your parishioners to bless the poor by providing safe homes for 159 families living in the Diocese of Santa Rosa de Lima and the Diocese of Suchitepéquez-Retalhuleu, Guatemala. We offer special Advent reflections, activities and more to help families in your community learn about global poverty and take action to share Christ’s mercy.

During Advent 2021, Catholic parishes and groups across the U.S. helped raise funds to build 107 homes in Guatemala! As we begin a new liturgical year, we invite you to share this blessed gift with even more families in need. This is the perfect opportunity for your parish community to engage with the Corporal Works of Mercy, activate compassion toward the poor, and transform lives with the hope and peace of Advent.

Empower your parish to transform lives with safe housing! A gift of $8,434 will build a home for one family — but any amount you raise will be an incredible blessing!

Subsistence farmers in Santa Rosa are dependent on rain for their crops — but rain also turns their flimsy houses into muddy, moldy messes.

Guatemala’s Housing Crisis

Rural Families Long for Peace and Safety

Nearly 60% of Guatemala’s population lives in poverty, with one in four people earning less than $3.20 a day (CIA World Factbook, The World Bank). More than half of the nation’s people live in rural areas, which often lack access to basic infrastructure such as safe housing. Under these circumstances, the poorest families can only afford to build small, insecure, mud-floor shelters. Their fragile dwellings leave them vulnerable to bad weather, vermin and intruders, and children and the elderly frequently fall ill due to damp and drafty conditions.

By raising funds to build safe homes, your parish will bless families with greater security, improved health and a tangible reminder of God’s love.

Meet Our Ministry Partners

Building a Foundation of Faith

Under the leadership of their respective bishops, Caritas organizations in the Diocese of Santa Rosa de Lima and the Diocese of Suchitepéquez-Retalhuleu are working closely with Cross Catholic Outreach to strengthen local families by delivering humanitarian aid and supporting integral human development.

Caritas Santa Rosa de Lima

Cross Catholic Outreach has partnered with Caritas Santa Rosa de Lima since 2014. To date, we have helped support its material and spiritual ministry through programs for faith formation, food, education, agriculture and housing, impacting thousands of families.

Appointed in 2021, Bishop José Cayetano Parra Novo (third from left) has already taken an active role in the compassionate work of Caritas. Here, His Excellency inaugurates the diocese’s first Catholic school.

Caritas Suchitepéquez-Retalhuleu

Cross Catholic Outreach has partnered with Caritas Suchitepéquez-Retalhuleu since 2018. We’ve helped provide food relief, agricultural support, academic scholarships and a community water system to strengthen local families. This will be our first housing project in the diocese!

His Excellency Pablo Vizcaíno Prado reviews construction plans for the Diocese of Suchitepéquez-Retalhuleu. He has been bishop of the diocese since its inception.

The Homes You’ll Provide

It only takes $8,434 to build one house!

The goal of this year’s Advent outreach is to bless 159 families (1,113 individuals) with the gift of safe housing. It only takes $8,434 to build a simple, sturdy home for a family in need. Each house will feature:

  • A 338 sq. ft. floor plan with three rooms.
  • Concrete walls and flooring.
  • A galvanized steel roof.
  • A secure metal door and shuttered windows.
  • A water storage tank.
  • A sanitary latrine to promote hygiene and dignity.
  • A clean-burning stove to protect lung health.

Cristina’s Plea for Safety

Cristina Yanes is pleading that God will keep her children safe. Her stick-and-thatch home cannot keep out the rain — much less pests and intruders.

“I am afraid of someone coming and doing something to me and my children,” Cristina shared.

Answer the prayers of mothers like Cristina by providing strong homes.

Cristina and her daughter, Mariela, stand outside their home.

Free Advent Resources

Join Us

Join us in living out the Corporal Works of Mercy by building safe new homes for those in great need. Your parish’s gift will answer the prayers of 159 families in Guatemala!

Contact Us to Transform Lives This Advent

To get started with this Advent outreach, download the free resources above or contact us for more information. God bless you for sharing Christ’s light!

Milvia Usleni Escobar and her daughter, Eugenia, used to live in a dilapidated shelter built from rusty sheet metal. Today, they have a safe home because of friends like you!

Proceeds from this campaign will be used to cover any expenditures incurred through June 30, 2023, the close of our ministry’s fiscal year. In the event that more funds are raised than needed to fully fund the project, the excess funds, if any, will be used to meet the most urgent needs of the ministry.