Our mission is to serve our migrant brothers and sisters who labor in the fields
and farms of North Carolina from May through October.
Every Sunday during the summer months June, July, August and September St. Francis parishioners drive migrant farmworker to and from Mass at Our Lady of the Rosary parish in Louisburg, N.C. Once a month we also host a fiesta for the seasonal farm workers and their families.
VOLUNTEER TO DRIVE
Every Sunday, a caravan of St. Francis parishioners meet and drive together to several designated migrant farm camps and pick up migrant farm workers and take them to a 1pm Mass at Our Lady of Rosary. After Mass, we take the men to the store and back to the camps.
To sign-up for an upcoming 2022 Sunday – go this link.
All driver’s will need to complete this (Liability Insurance Driver’s Form)
Please write Migrant Ministry on the form and send via email to Mary Lou Holloway at email@example.com or put into an envelope for Migrant Ministry and deposit into the gold mailbox on the wall by the receptionists desk.
Time Commitment: Any or every Sunday afternoon from 11am to 3pm, June through September.
Who can participate: Anyone with a valid driver’s license, proof of insurance and extra seat in their car or anyone who can help provide and cook a meal and visit with the farm workers.
Gifts: Driving, hospitality, Spanish-speaking a plus but not necessary
For more information contact: Mary Lou Holloway at firstname.lastname@example.org
This is a family friendly ministry.
VOLUNTEER TO HELP WITH A MEAL
If you are interested in helping with one of the Fiesta meals, or donate items/food for the event,
Time Commitment: One to a few hours, depending on whether you donate, cook or serve food
Gifts: Cooking, donating food, serving food, hospitality, Spanish-speaking a plus.
For more information contact: Adriana Ruiz at email@example.com.
Up at 5:00am, dress in the dark and eat a small cold breakfast. Board the van to the fields at 5:45 unsure of where youi will be working that day. 6:00am – begin harvesting tobacco, fruits and/or vegetables, most days in full sun, 80 degrees. Pick as fast as you can, if you don’t you may not get a breat. 9:00am – take off the trash bag you wear to protect youirself from the pesticides and take a 10 minute water break. 12:00 pm – eat your lunch in the fields among the plants, with hands full of pesticides because there is no soap and water to wash. 4:00 pm – your second and final water break, this one for only 5 minutes. 7:00 pm – board the van back to your trailer, exhausted, to make dinner and lunch for the next day, to wash your clothes and take turns showering and calling your family who you will n ot see for months. 9:00 pm – go to bed hoping for a better night’s sleep so you can drag yourself out of bed tomorrow, for pay that on average is below minimum wage because most farm workers are exempt from the minimum wage laws in our country.
Such is a day in the life of a Migrant Farm Worker in the fields of North Carolina. Would we do that work?
Not if there was any way we could avoid it.
Will you join us as we attempt to ease their burdens just a bit? Our Migrant Ministry serves our migrant brothers simply by being present to them and showing them we care by providing some much needed supplies and by driving them to and from Mass at Our Lady of the Rosary Parish in Louisburg each Sunday from June-September. On certain Sundays we will offer a Fiesta of food and fun for them.
Families are welcome!
Meet Javier, a migrant farm worker from Mexico who has been coming to North Carolina for many years to pick our fruits and vegetables and harvest our Christmas trees. While he’s here he lives in a barren trailer he shares with six other men at the labor camp. He also shares bathrooms and showers (as do many of the workers) that are dirty, without privacy, hot in the summer and freezing in the colder fall and winter months; not an inviting scenario for washing off the toxic pesticides which they come in contact with in the fields.
But this isn’t Javier’s primary concern. What he often talks about is how desperately he misses his wife and children. He is here most of the year and cannot go back and forth to Mexico because he lacks the extra money needed. “I missed the first 9 months of my son’s life one year,” he said. “But I make these sacrifices so they can have a better life.”
Our families are fed, our tables filled, by hundreds of thousands of men and women like Javier, who are separated from their own families. Won’t you help us ease their burdens just a bit while they are here?
Our Migrant Ministry at St. Francis is a ministry of solidarity and encounter that affirms the inherent dignity of all farm workers. We serve our migrant brothers by providing much needed supplies and driving them to and from Mass at Our Lady of the Rosary parish in Louisburg each Sunday from June through September. One Sunday a month we also stay after mass for a fiesta of amazing home cooked food and lots of fun. During the fiestas we would like to provide other services to the farm workers, like hair cutting, massage, dental, medical, etc. If you have a specific skill and are willing to come and share it, please let us know.
Sign up here to drive, provide food and/or travel with other St. Francis parishioners and spend the afternoon offering hope and hospitality to those who hunger for a more dignified life. Thank you! Your kindness means so much to the men.
And no worries, you will be trained and there will always be an experienced driver leading the way each Sunday. If you have any questions, please contact Bruce Cartier at firstname.lastname@example.org or 919-900-0452.