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February E-Newsletter

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Dear Friends,

Happy February! February is a month full of celebrations – Ground Hog Day, Lunar New Year, President’s Day, Black History Month, Valentine’s Day, Lent and  “Random Acts of Kindness Day.” This day resonated with me.

At Bread and Life, we celebrate every day as a gift and each person who walks through our doors is a reminder of the blessings of life. In the very work we do, we perform Random Acts of Kindness every day.

For many years we were blessed to have Dr. Jerry Ross, PhD., Dean Emeritus of the School of Education at St. John’s University on our board. Jerry was a dedicated educator, and progressive thinker who posed the most interesting questions and always gave us food for thought. He was an accomplished musician and touched the lives of thousands of students in his storied career. His life was filled with Random Acts of Kindness. We at Bread and Life were honored to have him on our board and blessed to call him friend. Jerry’s death leaves an empty seat at our board table and one that is irreplaceable. Jerry lived life to the fullest and he is a reminder to us of what it means to live each day to its fullest, to do right, to challenge the wrongs and  by our little acts make a difference wherever we can. He reminded us that kindness and compassion go a long way in a world that is torn apart by violence and hate. He reminded us that a simple act of kindness whether known or unknown can make a powerful difference for someone who is struggling.

Despite government cuts of more than $800,000, Bread and Life continues to meet the needs of our guests from diapers for newborns, to ID cards, to translation services, health care and of course food. No one ever leaves Bread and Life empty-handed. We will remain faithful to our mission of feeding the body, mind and spirit and continue to do it in the Vincentian tradition. We will continue to welcome all with open arms and be of service to those in need.

A friend of mine sent me a Valentine’s Day card with this prayer inside. It reminded me of Jerry and how he lived his life-purposefully, intentionally and by choice – that my choices matter – that those around me matter – and that the choices I make are motivating me to be a better person.

Today I choose:

To live by choice-not by chance

To be motivated-not complacent

To be of service-not an onlooker

To excel -not compete

To have self-esteem-not self-pity

To listen to the divine’s inner whisperings!

I think this prayer exemplifies how Jerry lived and the many  Random Acts of Kindness he performed in his life to make the world a better place. I hope that each of you feels the powerful impact of a random act of kindness and in turn you do the same for someone else.

With gratitude,

Sr. Caroline Tweedy, RSM

Executive Director


We are committing to raising funds for 40,000 meals during the 40 days of Lent. Won’t you join us? Your support in any amount will make a significant

difference in the lives of those who are hungry among us.

As Lent begins let’s focus on the positive in our lives.

Let’s be gentle and patient with one another. Let’s try to enjoy

what we have, and let’s give back to our neighbors in need.

Jerrold Ross, Ph.D., 88, passed away peacefully at Calvary Hospital on February 1, 2024

Bread and Life is humbled and honored to call Jerry a great friend and wise board member for many years. As chair of the program committee, Jerry took an active interest in how best to meet the needs of our guests. He was keenly interested in their welfare and always looked for ways to enhance their lives through our programs. Jerry could be counted upon to be up to speed with local city, state, and federal issues that would benefit Bread and Life. Often he would call with a new resource or opportunity for program staff to consider. His wisdom, guidance and commitment to those most in need will continue to point the way for Bread and Life well into the future.

Mother Cabrini

awards $1 million in grants to St. John’s Bread & Life!

In Brooklyn, 63 programs are receiving more than $23 million to meet immediate community and health needs, including: $1 million for St. John’s Bread & Life’s emergency food center and mobile marketplace expansion in Brooklyn!


Donate Now!
or text HUNGER to 44321

For volunteering, contact:

Renelle Merstil at [email protected]

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This entry was posted on Monday, March 11th, 2024 at 11:19 am. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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