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Ministry responds to growing poverty among women

The Gabriel Project of Catholic Charities and the Office of Hispanic Ministry joined forces to open the fifth Gabriel House in the archdiocese, at Centro San Juan Diego, the archdiocese’s Hispanic Institute for Family and Pastoral Care.

The new house, which responds to the material, emotional and spiritual needs of pregnant women and families, opened May 13 and was blessed by Archbishop Samuel Aquila May 29.

“The greatest poverty is the poverty that is growing among women today, especially single mothers,” Archbishop Aquila said in comments prior to the blessing. “It’s important for us to reach out to them.”

The house at Centro will bring the charity of the Church to the fastest growing portion of the flock in northern Colorado, the archbishop continued.

“As Luis (Soto, executive director of Centro) noted over 50 percent of the faithful of the archdiocese are Hispanic,” Archbishop Aquila said. “So it is a way to really carry out the mission of Christ, to really serve others, and follow the commandments that he has given to us.”

It is located in a key geographic location, at Centro’s headquarters at 2830 Lawrence St.

“It puts us right in the downtown area where we can really be of assistance to people,” explained Mimi Eckstein, executive director of the Gabriel Project. “Right across the street is the Margery Reed Mayo Day Nursery.”

The child care center of Catholic Charities cares for children from 6 weeks to 5 years old.

Centro’s Gabriel House, located in a converted second-floor classroom, is open 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. The other four houses, located in Denver, Aurora, Lakewood and Boulder, combined to serve nearly 6,000 parents in 2013. For more information visit www.gabrielhousedenver.org or call Eckstein at 303-742-0828.

The ministry continues to expand, with plans to establish its sixth house, the first outside the Denver-metro area, in Fort Collins in September. There will be an information meeting 6:30-7:30 p.m. June 11 at St. Joseph Church at 300 W. Mountain Ave. in Fort Collins.

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