On the Frontlines, Three Catholic Sisters Turn Despair Into Hope

The COVID-19 pandemic claimed nearly 40 million jobs at its peak. As it continues to obliterate whole sectors of the American job market, the pain felt by now-unemployed, undocumented workers is being compounded. Jobs cleaning houses, factory work, and taking care of children have been decimated by local and state regulations to stop the spread of the disease. Now, these workers are not only finding themselves out of jobs, but also ineligible for unemployment assistance or federal stimulus checks.

With this in mind, Sisters Basilia Torres Uribe, Brigida Camarena Chavez and Rosa Maria Martinez — all Missionaries of Charity of Mary Immaculate at Satanta Parish — knew the $1,000 grants they each received from the Sisters on the Frontlines initiative would provide a much-welcome respite to many families in need.

Turning despair into hope

The convergence of the health and economic hardships brought on by the pandemic was felt all across Satanta Parish in the southwest corner of Kansas.

The Sisters knew it was imperative to quickly mobilize and aid these and as many other families as possible with their combined gifts.

…their debt has increased; their resources have been depleted and the bills just keep coming.”

– Sr. Brigida Camarena Chavez

Not alone, not forgotten

The Sisters recalled the joy each recipient expressed on their visits. They were grateful for the financial assistance, but even more for being remembered and cared for as a valued part of the Catholic community. At a time when isolation can be truly overwhelming, especially for those most in need, the Sisters remind us that charity and mercy come in many forms, and we are all called to serve in this mission. 

“Laura,” a widow, was recently laid off from her job and is caring for six family members who contracted COVID-19.

“Dora,” a newly unemployed mother, is recuperating from a recent bout with cancer and struggling to keep up with rent, utility and medical bills.

And “Maria” is a hospitalized parishioner isolated from her family who were unable to return from Mexico to be with her.

 I’m very grateful for the donations that have caused so much joy to all who have benefitted, and to me, as I have been able to be that link of your mercy and charity.” 

Sr. Brigida Camarena Chavez
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