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 | Keishla Espinal

Bishop Parkes Leads a Prayer Service in Thanksgiving of Faithful Givers

“The reason you are here today is because you have done and continue to do good things for the Lord,” said Bishop Gregory Parkes, during the Mater Dei Giving Society Prayer Service on November 19, 2023, at the Cathedral of St. Jude the Apostle.

In 2020 Bishop Parkes launched the Mater Dei Giving Society in appreciation for those who have supported the Diocesan mission of Courageously Living the Gospel through charitable giving. Mater Dei means Mother of God in Latin and members follow the example of our Blessed Mother by putting their faith into action and supporting the good works of the local Church in Christ’s name.

During the prayer service, Bishop Parkes shared how participant’s donations are making an impact around the Diocese of St. Petersburg.

Maria Jurkovich, a parishioner of St. Paul Catholic Church, in St. Petersburg has been supporting the diocesan mission for over 20 years.

Jurkovich stated, “I donate because I know it is for a good cause. I believe it is better to give than to receive; that is my motto.”

Bishop Parkes reminded those in attendance of their important role in the success of diocesan ministries.

“All we do is possible because of you, and because of your commitment, and your love for this local Church, and for that, I say thank you. You can be proud to be a Catholic in the Diocese of St. Petersburg because of the good works that we are accomplishing here in the Lord's name.”

All in attendance received a special medal blessed by Bishop Parkes and had the opportunity to take a photo with the Bishop during the reception.

The Mater Dei Giving Society has four circles, listed below, that represent different levels of commitment.

  • Mater Spei (Mother of Hope) Circle recognizes those who have established a legacy gift for a parish, a mission, or a diocesan entity in their estate.

  • Mater Unitatis (Mother of Unity) Circle recognizes those who have given a significant gift this past year to one of the Diocesan entities.

  • Mater Ecclesia (Mother of the Church) Circle recognizes businesses and organizations that have given a significant gift in the past year to one of the Diocesan entities.

  • Mater Caritatas (Mother of Charity) Circle recognizes those who have given 10 years in a row to one or more of the Diocesan entities.

To view photos from the event, click here.