Posts By: Robert Citelli

SFC St Vincent de Paul Is Great Resource for Local Families in Need

Regular Schedule

On the 1st, 2nd, & 3rd Tuesday of each month from 1:30 PM to 2:30 PM, our SVdP Ministry gives out bags of groceries to needy families in our community.
 
If you know anyone who is struggling to purchase groceries, please tell them to come to the parish office on the above mentioned Tuesdays.

How St Vincent de Paul Serves Those in Our Parish

Each quarter a collection will be taken up for our St. Vincent de Paul outreach program. The money collected is given directly over to the people who run this program particular to St. Frances Cabrini. Not every church in the Diocese of San Jose has an SVdP program where money is collected although each church has its own way of dealing with the needs of those in their parish community. Help is available to those in our local community because we have a comprehensive SVdP program.

Meet the SVdP Leaders

When Don Crooks, who ran a dedicated SVdP outreach program here at SFC for well over 25 years passed away in 2007, Ken and Joan (last name withheld upon request) stepped in and offered to do what it was Don did but in way that was better suited for the privacy needed to take on what is a research-intensive, always on call for those in need, ministry. Talking with a landlord or property management, working with PG&E or the water company, etc. is par for the course on any given day.

We would not have an outreach program here at SFC were it not for Ken and Joan. Mr. Crooks would go to homes or apts. to see what was going on with those in need of help. At that time there were St. Vincent de Paul stores where one with a voucher, could get a bed or couch or appliance.

The parish office starts with gathering and scanning information from those who are in need and have been referred to SFC. A phone call comes in, paperwork is scanned for a PG&E bill, help with rent, clothes needed for a child’s school year, a dental bill, a car repair; these can create a domino effect that will see one fall short in their ability to pay other bills. Nowadays, more often than not, people have lost their homes or a rental and find themselves with children in tow, living in shelters or in the family car. In some cases, SVdP will help with a motel room for a few nights, maybe a week to give respite to a family in crisis. Work is always being done behind the scenes to ensure people are helped to the best of the ability of a small but dedicated crew.

Special Thanks To Our Volunteers

Speaking of a dedication! SFC’s SVdP Ministry has a team of women who come in the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Tuesdays of each month and set up to give away bags of food. On occasion, we have the good fortune of fresh lemons from Shirley Corbari. Always a treat to give away fresh fruit! The living room in the parish center is a warm welcome to those coming through the garden gate where they are met with 2 or 3 of the following ladies: Carol Sakaguchi, Diana Gray, Dorothy Heimgartner, Mary Lanier, Yvonne O’Connell, Robbi Stroup, Jennifer Nickolas & Teresa Adams.

The faces of those we serve are more than names noted on a clipboard and they come where they know they will be met with a warm smile, kind conversation and a solid bag of food. We don’t always know to what extent our ministries go when it comes to serving those in need. Much time and effort is put forth to serve but the reward is great. Thank you, ladies, as you serve the homeless and working poor in our community! Thank you, Ken and Joan, for all you do to keep this important ministry alive and well!

Tamara Kok Update on Call for Help

We’ve received an update on Tamara’s condition. In case you missed it…

Dear Friends & Family,

After being diagnosed with breast cancer two years ago, Tamara Kok, wife and mother of five, continues to persevere on her journey to the fullness of health.  Through much prayer and discernment, she opted for alternative therapies that would strengthen her immune system to help her body fight the cancer, foregoing the scattershot and destructive approach of conventional chemo and radiation.  This has taken great courage and faith!  Many of us have walked this journey with Tamara and have watched her body and health transform.  She has remarked on occasion that she “has more energy now than before her first pregnancy!”  In short, the treatment approach has been effective, the tumors are shrinking, and some have disappeared completely!  However, the cancer is not completely gone, and further treatment is needed.  The Koks have incurred massive debt as insurance will not pay for “alternative” therapies (even though it costs less than conventional treatment!).  Please consider helping them by donating to this campaign.  Your support will help the Koks pay for Phase 2 of her current treatment and help her cross the finish line!

 
See https://www.gofundme.com/help-tamara-with-cancer-treatments
You may also contact the Kok’s directly (tvmtkok@msn.com) to make a donation. The Go Fund Me organization does take a small percentage (2.9%) of each donation and charges 30 cents per transaction. However, you ARE able to use a debit/credit card. Additionally, they ask for a “tip” which is optional. You can specify “other” and give in any amount you wish or not at all.
 
Their goal is to raise $30,000 by January 31, 2019. Please feel free to forward this email to others who may be able to provide support.
 
Thank you in advance for your continued prayers, and any help you can provide!

Please read on to learn more about Tamara’s story in her own words…

Tamara’s Journey

“I was first diagnosed with breast cancer in November 2016. At first, it was only found in my right breast and was just pre-cancer. However, an MRI revealed there was cancer in my left breast and lymph nodes, putting me between stage 2 and 3. At that time, the plan was for me to do 20 weeks of chemo, followed by a double mastectomy, breast reconstruction, and then radiation (which is very bad to do after breast reconstruction, but still they were going to have me do it.)

I did one round of chemo and lost all of my hair. However, I did not really get that sick or anything. It was just that during that time, my mother began challenging me about the chemo, and I promised her I would pray about it. Long story short, I felt the Lord was leading me to do alternative treatments. I contacted a friend who had taken her husband to Mexico, and she put me in contact with a very devout Catholic doctor in Tijuana. I did 3 weeks of treatments with her in early 2017.

When I got home, I set about getting my health back. I began exercising and watching my diet. I ate a raw food only diet for many weeks and then slowly added in egg and chicken. Eventually, I moved into a paleo diet and then a ketogenic diet. All in all, I lost over 70 pounds in a one year period.

In September of 2017, a follow up MRI showed that 2 tumors were totally gone, but a new spot had showed up, so I went back to Mexico for 3 more weeks of treatments. Throughout 2018, I have felt great. Although the tumors in my breast were not gone, we thought we were doing a good job of containing them. So, when we got a little extra money this spring, we bought an RV. God’s hand was in it though.

Thermographies showed that my right breast had increased vascularity, meaning the tumor could be growing. So, I contacted the Cancer Center for Healing in Irvine, CA, after Caprice Hardy sent me a podcast with the doctor there. I had heard of her already and had thought about going to see her back when I was first deciding about Mexico. I decided to contact the center. The doctor sent me for PET/CT scan, and it was found that it had metastasized to my bone. Nothing in my right breast though!

I first came to the center on 9-11, an ironic date to say the least. What drew me to the center is that they do a blood test called RGCC which tests the cancer cells in your blood against various chemo drugs and supplements to see what will be effective for your cancer. This test is only offered in Greece, and so my blood had to be overnighted to Greece! The doctor at the center then had me come back for some pre-treatments in late September, and we geared up for me to come back to the center in October for what was supposed to have been 3 weeks of treatments.

Since I was much worse off than what anyone expected, my 3 weeks of treatments has stretched into as much as 27 weeks. The first 15 weeks is phase 1 and consists of daily IVs of mistletoe and salicinium. Mistletoe helps combat the negative side effects of chemo, and salicinium blocks the cancer tumor’s production of nagalase, an enzyme it produces so it can hide from your immune system. Insulin Potentiated Therapy combined with low dose chemo is also part of this phase and should be administered once a week during this time. (I got so sick and have not been able to do it these last 2 weeks). Cancer cells love glucose and have about 9 times more insulin receptors on them so they can suck up glucose. The Insulin Potentiated Therapy drops your blood sugar very low. The cancer cells open up for the insulin, thinking they are going to get glucose, but instead they get the low dose chemo. This is why only a low dose is needed. The insulin makes it just as effective as full chemo.

So far, this has been quite effective for me. I am blessed in that my breast tumors are all palpable, so I can feel them shrinking! The terrible, almost excruciating, pain I was having in my left hip totally went away after the 3rd treatment!

Phase 2 is dendritic cell therapy. This is a immunotherapy to be done only after your tumors are gone or nearly gone. Dendritic cells are what stimulate your lymph nodes to make super T lymphocytes. These are cancer-killing cells. This phase is meant to prevent any recurrence of cancer. Once again, my blood will be shipped off, this time to Germany, to culture my own dendritic cells and literally make about a trillion of them to be put back into my body through IV.

None of this is covered by insurance. The insurance company only sees “alternative” and refuses to pay, even though much of it, like the chemo drugs, are conventional. The irony is that although expensive, it is still cheaper for the insurance company than conventional treatments. Right now, phase one is costing us about $11,000/week. Phase 2 should not be so expensive, but it all depends on how well my body responds. We are humbly asking you to help us pay for phase 2. Right now, we are just accruing massive debt. We also have to pay for me to have a place to stay. Remember that RV? I am living in it, and we found a very nice RV park on a cove of the bay at Newport Beach. I am very blessed to have a place I can call “home” during this time. Vincent still works in San Diego during the week, so he now stays with me and drives down to San Diego while he is here. It really helps to get to see him each week.

Providentially, our daughter, Tian, graduated from college in September. She is home running the place. I could not have come here for these treatments if she were not home to help. I am so blessed to have such a capable daughter!

Any help you could give us would be most appreciated. I will certainly offer up my sufferings as a prayer for each of you who help us. From the bottom of hearts, thank you!!!!”

Tamara & Vincent Kok

MCO Celebrates Virgen de Guadalupe

 The Mexican Catholic Organization celebrated the Feast of the Virgen de Guadalupe over the weekend and the Morgan Hill Guadalupe Dancers participated in the Saturday Service. See https://youtu.be/9FJdjd85DTI

Special Thanks to Pam Hood for supplying the video and pictures. See MCO Virgen de Guadalupe December 2018
 
More information on the evening’s celebration and additional video can be found on Pam’s blog at http://twinklefingers.profhood.com/
 
For more information on MCO see https://sfcabrini.org/mco/
 
Follow SFC on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/sfcsjca/

Quan Kok Selected for the Saints in the City Santa Teresa Award

Congratulations to Quan Kok on his selection for the Saints in the City Santa Teresa Award. It is given to one youth from each parish who has carried the torch of discipleship with fearless faith, enduring hope and bountiful charity.

Quan has been an altar server since the age of 9 years, and is now our number one Altar Server at St. Frances Cabrini. He is the assistant trainer for Fr. Michael with the altar servers and has been our Master of Ceremonies for Easter Vigil and other major liturgical celebrations. Every Sunday you can find him playing the piano at the 9:30 AM Family Mass. Quan is a senior in a Home Schooling High School and was elected Treasurer of its student council.

The Saints in the City Banquet is an opportunity for all of the leaders of the Diocese of San Jose to honor our youth who have carried the torch of discipleship with fearless faith, enduring hope and bountiful charity.

Each parish and high school selects one youth as their 2018 honoree. We recognize each of these young heroes and honor their commitment to the Great Commission and their eager response to the New Evangelization.

 

     

Alpha 2018 Wrap Up

The 3rd annual Alpha Course has now come to its completion. It was another successful year and our guests have either formed a relationship with Christ or renewed their relationship with Him. They have also discovered the wonders of the Holy Spirit.

Alpha would not be able to be a success without the help of our Cabrini community. Thank you to the Ladies League, the SFC’s FILAM and Assyrian groups, Blue Rock BBQ, Raquel Carranza, and Maile Figone for preparing delicious meals for our team and guests. Thank you to all our Alpha team members (Raquel Mendoza, Sam
Nicholas, Jennifer and Erin Donnelly, Darin, Jenny, and
Linda McGinnes, and Stacey Montes) for being dedicated
disciples of Christ and helping to spread the Good News.
Please contact Alicia Morales alicia_morales@comcast.net
or call 408-857-0523 if you are interested in participating
next year.

You can also learn more about Alpha on the SFC Website athttps://sfcabrini.org/alpha/