CRS Mini Grants

Each Lent, parishes, schools and campus ministries of the Diocese of St. Petersburg participate in Rice Bowl, the Catholic Relief Services (CRS) educational program of prayer, fasting, learning and giving. CRS Rice Bowl is Catholic Relief Services’ Lenten program for families and faith communities in the United States who want to put their faith into action. Through CRS Rice Bowl, participants are invited to hear stories about their brothers and sisters in need around the world, and devote their Lenten prayers, fasting and alms to change the lives of those who suffer in poverty.

Bring Lent to Life in your parish or family though CRS Rice Bowl. Now is the time to order CRS Rice Bowl materials. Visit:

Here are some helpful hints for making CRS Rice Bowl a success in your Parish:

  • Outreach to parishes to either inform of the campaign or to thank them for their participation
  • Blessing of the bowls at your parish
  • Host a CRS Rice Bowl Kick-Off Lunch event, invite your local schools and have a CRS Guest Speaker. Multiple Agencies of Archdiocese involved
  • Offering small, local grants with the monies collected.  Calling parishes to follow up on monies collected
  • At. St. John the Baptist in Madison, AL, there is a strong partnership between the parish and school leaders and communities in working to make the Rice bowl initiative a success.  I think collaboration and support among leaders and across contingent communities is a best practice.
  • Try out RB recipes
  • We send out a Thank You document in August or September with the total rice bowl amount we collected for the year, a list of the local beneficiaries as well as pictures/blurbs of global beneficiaries taken from the Stories of Hope.

Of the funds available for distribution from the CRS Rice Bowl collection, 75% is sent to CRS headquarters to fund projects that prevent hunger and poverty around the world.  The 25% retained by our Diocese is being made available for small grants of up to $1,000.00. Diocesan entities may apply for assistance in funding innovative hunger and poverty alleviation efforts, justice education or start-up for CRS projects.

2019 Grants Awarded

CRS Mini-Grants
The Office of Life, Justice and Advocacy is pleased to announce the recipients for the 2019 CRS Mini-Grants.

The recipients are:

St. Petersburg Catholic High School for Experiential Faith Formation

Sacred Heart Parish in Pinellas Park for Fresh Fruit for the Needy

Knights Women’s Center for Emergency Supplies

Foundation of Life Pregnancy Center in Tampa for Emergency Basic Needs Assistance

Foundation of Life Pregnancy Center in Hernando County for Emergency Basic Needs Assistance

Foundation of Life Pregnancy Center in Pasco County for Food Pantry

Foundation of Life Pregnancy Center in Pinellas County for Emergency Basic Needs Assistance

Mission Santa Maria for Tutoring Project

SVDP at Our Lady Queen of Peace Parish for Pack-a-Sack with James E. Marlow Elementary School

Our Lady of Fatima Parish Respect Life Ministry for Food Pantry Support Program

St. Justin Martyr Parish for Together, We Can!

St. Anthony Food Pantry at Resurrection Parish for Filing the Gap

St. Mary Our Lady of Grace Parish for Sew Much Hope Project

SVDP at St. Thomas Aquinas Parish for Pack-A-Sack with Gulf Middle School

SVDP at St. Michael the Archangel in Hudson for Pack-A-Sack with Moon Lake elementary School

SVDP at St. James Parish for Pack-A-Sack

Prince of Peace Parish for “Whatever you do for the  least…”

To learn more about CRS Rice Bowl and order materials for Lent 2020, visit

This video describes the purpose of CRS Rice Bowl and mentions that 25% of the funds collected remain in our diocese for local poverty and hunger alleviation. This video could be used when Rice Bowls are given out, playing it before Mass or Faith Formation or Youth Ministry.

A similar but shorter video en Espanol

The Good Samaritan Series:

These videos can be used across age groups. Middle school and up will get the most from the content but the elementary school age kids will still be able to see and hear some important messages.

The Stations of the Cross: These videos that can be used with any age group (about 1 minute each).

The What is Lent? Series:

These general reflections on Lent are probably best for high school age and above, possibly middle school.

If you want to share any history of the work of CRS, these web sites are helpful: and In particular, these are some videos celebrating the 75 years of service of CRS and sharing about what it looks like around the world.

Learn more about Catholic Relief Services at their website: 

Join Catholic Relief Services in prayer