Human Development

Special Programs


This committee provides snacks and meals at church functions. A few of the functions are:  funeral luncheons for the bereaved, soup suppers before Stations of the Cross during Lent, weekly coffee hour and refreshments during retreats and/or church functions.

Holiday Baskets
At Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter we ask our parishioners to contribute food that will provide a complete festive meal. The baskets are then distributed to families in need from our Liverpool area. We also provide baskets for some families in the City of Syracuse as designated by agencies that offer assistance. Approximately 150-200 baskets are prepared each holiday season. Volunteers are always needed to help fill these baskets.

Oxford Inn
Since 1985 parishioners have prepared sandwiches for Oxford Inn, a night shelter for men in Syracuse. Sandwiches are made in the Parish Center kitchen every third Wednesday of the month.

Clothing & School Supplies
For a number of years, we have asked for donations of school supplies. The supplies are distributed to Food Pantry participants in late summer and early fall. Parishioners are also asked to donate good, used clothing during the month of September. In October, we have a clothing give-a-way. Clients from our food pantry as well as those from near-by pantries are invited to ‘shop’ at no charge.

Reverse Collections
Each year on the Feast of Epiphany, in cooperation with the Liturgy Planning Committee, we ask parishioners to help us support Jail Ministry, Dorothy Day House, Oxford Inn, Sarah House, and the Samaritan Center by bringing specific items (i.e., baby clothes, cleaning supplies) to our weekend liturgies. Help is always needed in collecting and distributing the items.

Crop Walk
In October, parishioners are invited to participate through sponsorship in a walk at Onondaga Park that benefits local, national and world organizations that serve the hungry. St. Joseph the Worker also receives a cash donation to our food pantry, and credit at the Food Bank to purchase food.

Operation Christmas Child
Members of the Hunger Committee, some of the religious education classes and the parish at large donate items and prepare ‘Christmas Boxes’ for children in third-world countries. They are ‘shoe-boxes’ containing little gifts that could be useful for children in a specific age group and a specific gender.

As part of our ongoing effort to reach out to those in need, members of the Hunger Committee come together to prepare and serve a meal at the Samaritan Center, an interfaith program that feeds the homeless and needy men, women and children of Syracuse. It operates every day of the year and provides a hot meal to an average of 150 guests per day. On the weekends, churches volunteer to take over this task. St. Joseph the Worker provides, a meal about three times a year.


The Tutoring Center is open for winter session, Tues. & Thurs. from 3pm-5pm in the Parish Center at SJW. Students or their parents are asked to call ahead for an appointment. Both children and adults are welcome for free tutoring, and students are asked to bring their own work. This has been a great service to elementary and middle school students needing extra help in math, reading, writing, homework, or study skills. Adults from BOCES and immigrants learning English also use the tutoring service to get the skills they need to get ahead. Please call Kelley @ 440-4119 or email, if you are interested in this rewarding service, even if you are only available one day a week. Thank you!
The Bereavement Committee of St. Joseph the Worker began in 1993 to respond to parish families experiencing grief due to the loss of a loved one.Members of our staff, along with the Pastor, assist the family in planning the funeral Mass. The committee provides a luncheon in the Parish Center after the Liturgy.  Volunteers coordinate food donations and serve as host and hostesses at the luncheon.
Committee members follow up with the families after the funeral and send a greeting card on the first anniversary of their loved ones death.If you are interested in joining the Bereavement Committee or learning more about any aspect of this ministry, please call the rectory at 457-6060.