Diocesan News

LDCCW Collecting Diapers to Help Needy Mothers

(SNR) -Women who are experiencing unplanned, crisis pregnancies face many challenges. Now the Lincoln Diocese Council of Catholic Women (LDCCW) is trying to solve one of them: paying for diapers.

"If you figure a child will use six diapers a day, times 365 days a year," said Kay Wessel, LDCCW service commission chairperson, "a child will use 2,190 diapers a year."

For a pregnant woman or new mother who may have been left with little or no support from her partner, family and friends, that’s a daunting figure.

This month, the LDCCW has organized a diocesan-wide diaper drive. The ladies hope to collect enough diapers from every parish in the diocese to fill a 16-foot semi-trailer.

"We’ve estimated the trailer will hold over 50,000 diapers," Mrs. Wessel said.

That’s about enough to provide one year’s worth of diapers for 22 infants. Of course, nobody in the LDCCW would object if the donations surpassed the semi-trailer’s capacity.

"What greater display of pro-life [convictions] is there than helping provide the young mother with assistance and support of her decision to give life to her child?" Mrs. Wessel reasoned.

She noted that simple things like providing for everyday needs could enable a woman who feels pressured into abortion to choose life instead.

"Our diaper assistance may give her support in making a decision not to abort her unborn baby," said Mrs. Wessel.

Since the first week of October, the ladies of the LDCCW have set up diaper collection points in every parish in the diocese. Everyone is invited to participate – simply pick up a few packs of disposable diapers and bring them to the collection site before heading into Mass.

At the end of the month, LDCCW volunteers from each deanery will collect the diapers from each parish and store them in one location. Then, Mrs. Wessel and her husband (who is a volunteer truck driver for Catholic Social Services) will travel to the 13 deaneries across southern Nebraska to pick up the donations and transport them back to Lincoln.

The diapers will be distributed by Catholic Social Services and various crisis pregnancy centers that are supported by the LDCCW.

Halfway through the drive, Mrs. Wessel said that the donations are coming in. "My individual conversations with some of the parishes have indicated donations ranging from 100 diapers to 2,000 diapers."

Enthusiasm for the diaper drive is widespread and growing.

Mrs. Wessel noted that the young women of Theta Phi Alpha, the new Catholic women’s sorority at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, are helping with the Lincoln deanery’s collections as one of their service projects.

"This is a great opportunity for everyone in the diocese to participate in a project many can relate to," she urged. "Take an active part in making the diaper drive a huge success."

For those who do not have the means to purchase diapers or to make cash donations to the drive, Mrs. Wessel said there are still ways to help.

"Pray for an end to abortion," she suggested. "Volunteer at local pro-life organizations and Catholic Social Services."

She and other members of the LDCCW hope that the diaper drive will become another annual event. It’s the first promotion organized by the LDCCW with a set time period. Other efforts, such as collecting used eyeglasses (lenses and frames) and hearing aids to assist those in need, happen throughout the year.

The LDCCW is a spiritual organization that enriches the lives of Catholic women in the Diocese of Lincoln. Its membership seeks to fulfill the Gospel mandate by becoming involved in their parishes and towns in humanitarian, religious, pastoral and educational endeavors.

The work of the LDCCW directly affects the local parish and each family, but their influence also reaches to the state and national legislatures. LDCCW members provide monetary, material and spiritual support of various causes, including three crisis pregnancy centers, religious awards for girls, the Adopt-a-Priest program, devotion to the Divine Mercy, and many others.

To find out more about becoming an active participant in the LDCCW, contact the president of a local parish Altar Society.


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