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From Fossils to Tuxes & Gowns, Gala Glimpses Past & Inspires Future

Posted on April 11, 2018 by Alice Kenny  |  Share

Catholic Charities Centennial + 1

Mixing high society with deep commitment, 650 of New York’s movers and shakers decked out in tuxes and gowns snapped selfies with T-Rex fossils, dined on filet mignon, and raised more than two million dollars to support the work of Catholic Charities NY  at our 2018 gala held last night at the New York Museum of Natural History.  

NBC 4 Reporter Lynda Baquero welcomed guests beneath a nine-ton life-size model of a blue whale as FDNY Fire Fighter William Arce entertained with his signature barratone “God Bless America.”

But what made the evening stand out was inspiration shared by some of our generous heroes

Gregory Braca, TD Bank President/CEO and corecipient of the night’s “Deus Caritas Est” award, spoke about his adoption through the New York Foundling, a Catholic Charities affiliate.  He described how he began his banking career as a teller.  And he spoke about working his way up to achieving the American dream thanks to nurturing he received back when few others noticed him.

Fellow awardee Baseball Commissioner Robert Manfred then took the stage, describing one of Catholic Charities key supporters, NY Baseball hero Rusty Staub, who, until his death last week, helped Catholic Charities serve those others forget.

Cardinal Dolan took over where Mr. Manfred left off, telling the audience, “Imagine the questions God will ask Rusty: ‘Rusty, when I was hungry did you  feed me; when I was thirsty, did you give me drink; when you saw me as a stranger did you invite me in?’” 

Then Catholic Charities NY Executive Director Msgr. Kevin Sullivan summed up the meaning behind the event during his final remarks, pausing so the crowd could hear him as they stood and cheered.

“As Catholic Charities begins our next century, we cannot ignore the threats that the current environment of harsh rhetoric and rash policies from multiple places pose for us,” he told the audience.

“Well aware of the adversity, Catholic Charities will not shrink from the demanding duty of harnessing the innate goodness within each of us so that together we might foster a society that is both just and compassionate. 

“We will engage all sectors of our society: business and government, native born Americans and immigrants, those with more resources and those with much less, reds and blues; black, brown and white, young and old.  

The nights’ gala, he added was called “Centennial + 1” to call attention to Catholic Charities’ focus on the future.

Catholic Charities is doubling down in our second century to being a valued partner for the sake of our neighbors in need, non-Catholics and Catholics alike,” he told the packed house.  And based on the evenings’ cheers, support, and real-life examples of lives transformed, Catholic Charities is well on its way.

Find yourself and friends in our special Centennial +1 Gala facebook album

Join us at the Cardinal’s Golf Open and our other Signature Events to support Catholic Charities 101-year legacy of service.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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