Society of St. Vincent de Paul Omaha      October 2022 Newsletter

Supporting our neighbors in need through spirituality, friendship and service;

providing emergency food, clothing, financial and in-kind assistance, since 1868

"We must love our neighbor as being made in the image of God and as an object of his love."

- St. Vincent de Paul           

When we reflect on our being made in the image of God, we have to reconsider our offhand remark, “I’m only human.” And when we appreciate that we are all loved by God unconditionally, we are confronted by our own limitations for loving others. The same Spirit that inspired St. Vincent de Paul inspires our relationships today, both within the Society and with all of our neighbors, that we are truly loved because of who we truly are.  And we are called to share the infinite love that we receive with everyone else, who are truly loved because of who they truly are. In short, we are called to be Christ for all others and to see Christ in all others.

The wonder of the mystery of the Trinity is the wonder of God in relationship, and particularly God who deeply desires a relationship with each of us. That is why the goal of the Society is the spiritual growth of its members, and the last line of our mission statement is “…to build a more just world through personal relationships with and service to people in need.”

I hope, as you peruse our newsletter, you will see the foundation for such relationships in each article. I hope you will be open to explore how you can share - in your particular way - your relationship with us and with all of our neighbors. Enjoy!

           - Marty Smith, Executive Director




8:00am - 1:00pm

New location:

Omaha Home for Boys

4343 N 52nd St

Coat collection drives and volunteer sign ups start now!

Email below if you would like to volunteer, host a coat drive

or ask questions. 


A Tale of Two Kevins

Outgoing & Incoming SSVP Omaha Council Presidents,

Kevin Engelkamp and Kevin Grode!


The Society of St. Vincent de Paul Omaha would like to thank outgoing Council President, Kevin Engelkamp for his three years of servant leadership. Under his faithful guidance, Kevin Engelkamp brought to the presidency the breadth of knowledge he gained through his many years of service to the poor at his home parish of St. Peter Catholic Church’s SSVP conference. We are very grateful to “Team Engelkamp” (Kevin and his wife, Cindy) for their commitment of service to St. Vincent de Paul. Both plan to remain fully engaged in St. Peter’s SSVP conference’s outreach to those most in need.


INTRODUCING your new Society of St. Vincent de Paul Omaha Council President – Kevin Grode! Kevin Grode was elected by the SSVP Omaha Council on September 27th, with his new role beginning October 1st. Kevin Grode also brings to the SSVP Council presidency many years of involvement at Holy Name Catholic Church, where he and his wife, Mary, have been parishioners since 1990, and where their three children attended school. Prior to becoming involved with SSVP, Kevin was very active at Holy Name, including serving as school board president and a member of the Men’s Club. Recently retired after 35 years of federal government service, Kevin “highly recommends retirement to any and all who inquire.”


After becoming aware of SSVP’s mission of personal, spiritual growth by directly assisting our neighbors in need, Kevin became a Vincentian in 2015. Elected president of the Holy Name SSVP conference in 2017, Kevin is currently serving his last year as Holy Name conference president (two 3-year terms). Kevin was also a member of the SSVP Board of Directors from 2018-2020. Since retiring, Kevin has become a member of the SSVP Help Line Team and has taken the lead on updating the Help Line map. Kevin has become proficient with the various funding assistance mechanisms available to SSVP -- ServWare, Dollar Energy (MUD/OPPD) and MACCH (rent/utilities). He has also been very active – and hopes to become even more active – in fostering working relationships with community service organizations in the Omaha area, as part of an overall referral process.


Asked for his thoughts regarding his new role with SSVP, Kevin states: “I am both honored and humbled to be the next Omaha Council SSVP President. Kevin Engelkamp, the outgoing Council President, did a tremendous job these last three years in leading the Council and fulfilling the mission of SSVP. And I am confident that we can continue to make great progress in our efforts to help our neighbors in need, in the spirit of St. Vincent de Paul.”

If you wish to be in touch with Kevin Grode, he can be reached via email at

Kevin Engelkamp

Kevin Grode

Feast of St. Vincent de Paul – September 27th!


The Omaha Council hosted two events in celebration of the feast day of our patron, St. Vincent de Paul. On Tuesday morning, September 27th, the Most Reverend Archbishop George Lucas met and prayed with SSVP staff and volunteer Vincentians in our Holy Family Chapel. The group then proceeded to the front lawn, where Archbishop Lucas offered a special blessing on the Society and those who serve. Later that same afternoon, SSVP Chaplain, Msgr. James Gilg, celebrated mass for staff, Vincentians and other guests – with nearly 50 in attendance. With absolutely perfect weather that day, both events helped remind all in attendance of the important, sanctified nature of the work of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul.



Saturday Oct 22nd @ 10:00 AM

Our Garen Angel team who care for the Pantry Garden need help Need help putting the gardens to bed for the winter

Tasks include raking, digging, moving and pulling-up plants

Sign up today!



Current Pantry needs include:

large diapers (sizes 4, 5, and 6)

hygiene products

toilet paper

sauces (e.g. ketchup, mustard, salad dressing, etc.)

baking mix

canned fruit

Drop off donations on Monday and Wednesday mornings at the Pantry 2101 Leavenworth St.


Northwest Store:


5505 N. 90th St

Mon-Sat 9a-6p



Downtown Store:

2101 Leavenworth St

Mon-Sat: 9a-6p 


Papillion Store:

807 Tara Pl

Mon-Sat 9a-6p


West Center Store:

12301 W Center Road

Mon-Sat 9a-8p

Sun 12p-5p


Check out our website for more information on volunteering, donating, and more!

Visit our Website


It was a perfect fall day October 1 for the Churchyard Harvest Festival at Holy Family, bringing friends, neighbors, food and music to the Churchyard Garden and under the spread of trees on our grounds.

Thanks to the folks at Omaha Mobile Stage, a yard full of kids, families and those living or staying in the neighborhood were entertained by Mister K’s Clubhouse, the Hartford/Focht band and Danny Leger and Easter Rising. Yes, there was dancing.

Dave Egan and his family and friends donated and cooked dinner for more than 300 people, free of charge. Fragrant smoke filled the air as they grilled hamburgers, hot dogs and brats, and our SSVP volunteers plated those meats and baked beans, mac ’n’ cheese and sodas.

Holy Family Community Center’s mission is to provide help and friendship for those who are homeless and to connect members of our community through the arts, food and service. The Churchyard Harvest Festival is a wonderful opportunity for us to do that.

Thank you so much to everyone who helped make this happen!

See More Photos

As you may know, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul Omaha is instrumental in helping families and individuals from right here in our community stay in their homes. All across the city, volunteer Vincentians meet one-on-one with their neighbors in need. In many ways, the ministerial relationships that are created between Vincentians and their neighbors facing financial hardship truly help in the prevention of homelessness in our community.


What you may not realize, though, is the extent to which the Society, here in Omaha, also provides direct services to those who are currently experiencing homelessness.

In 2018, when Archbishop Lucas asked the Society of St. Vincent de Paul Omaha to continue providing the homeless outreach ministries here at the Holy Family Community Center (after the parish had closed), the SSVP board of directors, without fanfare, replied with a unanimous “yes”. And with that approval, serving the homeless of our Omaha community became a special work of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul. So, Mondays through Fridays, SSVP staff and volunteers provide clothing to the homeless via our “Closet Door” and serve hundreds of sack lunches to homeless and low-income members of our community, via our Sack Lunch Program.


One of the people who has truly benefitted from our organization’s services to the homeless is Robert B. Robert (pictured) is currently staying in the homeless shelter at the Siena Francis House, just down the street from our Holy Family Community Center. Roberts’s story is both heart-breaking and heart-warming, and is intimately intertwined with the Society and the special work that happens here at 1715 Izard Street.

Click Here to Read More of Robert's Story

Our Sack Lunch Program and Closet Door Ministries are in need of the following items to share with our neighbors in need. We would be grateful if you would consider donating any of the following:

Sack Lunch Program

Salties" (potato chips & other types of chips, pretzels, etc to include in sack lunches)

Closet Door

Men's Jeans (esp. sizes 30-36)

Men’s &Women’s Shoes (esp. sizes men’s sizes 10 to 13)

Women's & Men's Hoodies


Please feel free to drop off any donations to our Holy Family Community Center - 1715 Izard Street - from 10:30 am - 1 pm, Mondays-Fridays (and ask for Jeff)!


Donate to Holy Family Today 

AVP Workshops

The Omaha Alternatives to Violence Project (AVP) is offering a

Making Friends with Conflict workshop

at Holy Family Community Center, 1715 Izard, Omaha.

Participants will discover their personal style for dealing with conflict and learn about how it affects their daily life. We'll achieve this with a mini-quiz, exploring conflict styles, and small and large group discussions. At the end of the workshop, participants will have an opportunity to continue discovering new methods of how to change lives through future AVP non-violence workshops.

Workshop dates (choose 1):

Oct 8  2:30 - 4:30

Oct 16  2:30 - 4:30

Participation is limited to 30. Registration/questions:

The Creighton University Department of Fine & Performing Arts and Creighton Dance Company present:


“It Happened in New York”

Saturday, October 22, 2022 at 3:00pm and 7:00pm

Sunday, October 23, 2022 at 3:00 pm

Holy Family Community Center Chapel

Creighton Dance Company’s FALL DANCE 2022 will be a lively mix of Ballet, Modern, Jazz and Theatre Dance Pieces featuring choreography by Creighton Dance Department’s faculty and students.

The concert will pay homage to New York City and two of its pieces will feature live accompaniment by Omaha musicians Derek Dreier (Percussion) and Katie Wychulis (Harp).

Parking will be available at Creighton Lot #99.

Questions: Patrick Roddy (Dance Program Director) 402-280-3047

Creighton Dance RSVP

tbd dance collective

Making Space Dance Festival

Friday, Nov 4, Sat Nov 5, Sun Nov 6

7:30pm each night

Holy Family Community Center Chapel

Now in its fifth year, Making Space is a biennial performance festival, produced by tbd. dance collective, featuring a curation of choreographic works created by local, regional, and national movement artists. Often changing venues, choreographic guidelines, and structure, the purpose of this festival is to provide a platform for movement artists to present new work, explore the process of developing choreography, create connections among artists locally and cross-regionally, and offer educational workshops to foster a collective celebration of dance within our community.

tbd info and RSVP

Anastasis Theatre Co:

More Than a Number 

Saturday October 29

7:00-9:00 pm

Holy Family Community Center Chapel

Originally written and performed by a group of men at the Nebraska State Penitentiary, More Than a Number shatters misconceptions and reveals the common thread of our humanity. Sharing glimpses of life before prison, at crucial moments of choice, from life inside, and their hopes for the future, the play creates a tapestry of lived experience.

Anastasis will tour More Than a Number to partner sites throughout Omaha and Lincoln featuring a cast of men affected by incarceration and professional actors. Each performance will be followed by a community conversation that centers the voices of those most impacted by the Nebraska Correctional system. Each audience will also be invited to join us at our Forum on Criminal Justice Reform on November 10th.

Society of St. Vincent de Paul Omaha at
Holy Family Community Center
1715 Izard St. Omaha, NE 68102
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Please contact SSVP Development Director, Tim Sully, to discuss a variety of charitable donation options, including  monthly giving, donating stocks or mutual funds, the IRA Charitable Rollover, as well as planned giving / estate planning possibilities at!