Catholic and Mormon churches partner to refurbish Straight and Narrow facility | Paterson Times

Catholic and Mormon churches partner to refurbish Straight and Narrow facility


Nearly 100 volunteers from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints partnered with the Catholic Charities to refurbish the Straight and Narrow residential facility on Straight Street.

Volunteers came from both Paterson and Morristown on Saturday, September 19 to paint resident bedrooms, bathrooms, and a five-story stairwell.

“Our clients will live in more comfortable and aesthetically pleasing surroundings because of this act of love,” Joe Duffy, President of Catholic Charities, said. “Latter-day Saints and Catholics share a common value – love of fellow men and women. We welcome the expression of that love in service days such as today.”

Duffy said his organization proudly serves people of all faiths and no faiths. Straight and Narrow is the oldest community-based treatment center in the United States. It has been serving those who are addicted to drugs and alcohol for 61 years.

“We are always looking for ways to bridge faiths, reach out, and serve our communities,” Ron Ahrens, Director of Public Affairs for the New York Metropolitan area for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS), said. “We want to express our thanks to all the volunteers and especially Joe Duffy and his work to help those in need—we are honored to partner with Catholic Charities.”

  • e.g.g.

    Wonderful. LDS need to do more of these activities.

    When I went on my mission I was called as a Welfare Missionary, during President Kimball. The Welfare Missionaries was Pres. Kimball's baby. I was not a proselytizing missionary. My mission president would not allow the Welfare Missionaries do what we were sent out to do. It was bitterly disappointing. My companions were not interested in learning about it. Welfare Missionary work was all about service…..To members and non members alike. My mission was not a good experience, no matter how hard I tried. In my mission there was a great need for Welfare Missionaries. I felt my mission president disobeyed the Prophet. We could have done so much good, in many ways.

    I don't know when the church moved away from Welfare Missionaries and service. I do know that service only recently is becoming the new thing……..again….after an absence of thirty-five years.

  • M.M.

    I also served as a Welfare Missionary under President Kimball. In the MTC, we were trained to help local leaders implement the Welfare Program of the church. This was put into practice in many different ways through the Mission Presidents throughout the world. I am grateful that my mission president allowed us to serve in this capacity. I believe that is why Welfare Missionaries are no longer called as such–because we were successful in helping to establish this divine program. Today we still call Service Missionaries — we cannot begin to recognize the good they do, quietly and obediently, in the far flung corners of the globe!