In November 2005, the Fifty-Five and Up Ministry was established at Our Lady of Grace Church by a former Parochial Vicar and assisted by a parishioner. Their vision for the ministry was to get dedicated parishioners aged 55 and older to use their talents for the benefit of the church community.
Many of our activities are based on practicing the Spiritual and Corporal Works of Mercy, the tenets of our faith. In addition, we engage guest speakers to address topics we believe would be of interest to our members.
Here is a brief list of some of our works:
For the Homebound, Sick, Hospitalized, Bereaved: we visit, send get well and sympathy cards, and make telephone calls as part of our caring concern for our members and also non-members.
Choir: A “New Life Choir” was formed to sing at funerals; bringing much comfort to bereaved families.
Health Fair: For the past four years we have held fairs in which various health practitioners have participated in informing and updating seniors of current services available in health care. Both members and the community at large attend this event.
Fashion Show: After the devastating hurricane in Haiti, a fashion show was organized in 2010 to raise funds. The fashion show is now an annual event. The proceeds for the past five years have benefited the people in Haiti, providing prosthesis, assisting the needy, helping in the erection of a soup kitchen to provide meals, and a grant for school supplies for children. Catholic Charities of Central Florida Southern Regional Office and Our Lady of Grace church have also been recipients of our fund raisers.
Heritage Festival: A group from this ministry undertakes a funnel cake booth at the annual Heritage Festival of the parish.
We are thankful to our members who have dedicated their time and talent to the growth and strength of this ministry.
Meetings are held on the third Thursday of the month to share our rich heritage and diversity, and also a meal in fellowship. The ministerial year commences in September and culminates in May with a Gala event. Apart from the monthly meetings, retreats and day trips to various sites of interest are arranged.