Chris and Julie Lawler have two children, one who was adopted privately, and another who was adopted through Catholic Charities. Ever since they were introduced to the agency, they’ve done a deep dive in giving back.

“After we adopted our son we felt that we were committed to Catholic Charities for life,” Chris said. “So whatever it is that we end up doing – whether volunteering at a fundraiser, sitting on the board or serving meals at the 721 location – we do it because we have been so blessed to have our family.”

Whatever it is that we end up doing – we do it because we have been so blessed to have our family.
— Chris Lawler

Chris, who serves as a judge in Markham, supports many programs and events throughout the year and serves as chairman of the Child, Youth and Family Services Committee.

“We provide so many services for young students and people who don’t have the resources for early childhood education programs, which do such great work to make sure children and
young parents have a place to send their children. There’s a great need out there, and if you open up your eyes, you see that Catholic Charities helps people everywhere, all over the city and suburbs,” he said.

The Lawlers also participate in Catholic Charities Celebration of Giving Christmas Toy Shower and host a holiday party at their home every year to support Casa Catalina.
Chris said they’ve discovered many of their friends want to help but don’t know how or don’t feel comfortable.

For their home party in support of Casa Catalina, he and Julie ask Sister Joellen Tumas, the Director of Casa Catalina, what’s needed and then send out a wish list to their friends. “Every year we try to donate 50 turkeys, 50 hams, clothes, money, diapers – whatever is needed,” Chris said. “We host the party, make the ask, then load up our cars and drop off the donations. We’re trying to make Catholic Charities known and recruit as many people as we can. I let people know Catholic Charities is and has always been a full-service arm of the Church, and a provider of so many unique services to so many needy families.”