The annual collection for the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) will be held at all Masses the weekend of Nov. 18-19, which coincides with the Church’s celebration of the first World Day of the Poor.

Seventy-five percent of the monies collected by CCHD in the Diocese of Trenton is sent to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ national office of CCHD, while the remaining 25 percent is retained and redistributed in three to five grants to Catholic social agencies in the Diocese that focus upon providing basic human needs.

In a letter addressed to the pastors of the Diocese earlier this year, Father John C. Garrett, diocesan director for CCHD and pastor of Resurrection Parish, Delran, wrote, “With the support of your parish, we continue to build the kingdom of God in our midst.”

In his statement establishing the World Day of the Poor on the Thirty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time, Pope Francis called for Christian communities to mark the occasion with “moments of encounter and friendship, solidarity and concrete assistance” with people living in poverty.

“Poverty challenges us daily in the United States, but it also presents an opportunity for true encounter with the suffering flesh of Christ. CCHD is a concrete sign of the Church’s solidarity with people living in poverty and its commitment to bringing hope and the joy of the Gospel to our sisters and brothers in need,” said Bishop David P. Talley of Alexandria, chair of the CCHD Subcommittee of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development.

Nearly 41 million people live in poverty in the United States, defined as an annual income of $24,600 for a family of four and $12,600 for a single person. This collection supports the work of groups that empower low-income people to participate in decisions that affect their lives and work to break the cycle of poverty in their own communities. Many of the projects supported by CCHD embody the corporal works of mercy, including the protection of worker rights, expanding access to healthcare and reforming the criminal justice system.

CCHD is the official domestic anti-poverty program of the U.S. Catholic bishops. This national collection is the primary source of funding for CCHD's community and economic development grants and education programs aimed at fostering a culture of life and hope in communities across the nation.