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Catholic Charities Celebrates 100 Years-Key Dates and Milestones of the 1930s & 1940s

Posted on August 08, 2021 in: Milestones

Catholic Charities Celebrates 100 Years-Key Dates and Milestones of the 1930s & 1940s

Our History Continues . . .



The Great Depression and World War II presented new challenges and District Offices were established in Middletown and Norwich. New London District board members were instrumental in establishing the Council of Social Agencies, which evolved into the Community Chest and now the United Way. In New London, services included St. Vincent’s Kitchen that operated from Dec.1933, to May 1934. During that time 8,988 meals were served to destitute men.



World War II caused the disruption of family life. The Bureau was called upon many times to assist servicemen stationed temporarily in the community and to local residents faced with the problems of family separation. After the war, the Bureau continued to work for the preservation of the family and the welfare of children by providing services to unwed mothers, arranging adoptions, and providing foster care.


Mrs. Winifred F. McGuire 

(1882- 1947)

   Winifred Foran McGuire was a member of the Crowley Club and Past President of the Connecticut Council of Catholic Women. She helped organize and was a member of the Board of Directors of the Diocesan Bureau of Social Service (Catholic Charities). She lived in New London most of her life, attending St. Mary’s School. She and her husband, Atty. Frank L. McGuire, were parents of five children and fifteen grandchildren.  (Atty. James C. McGuire of New London, her grandson, contributed valuable historical information and a photograph of his grandmother for this writing. The photo was taken in New London in 1943 of Mrs. McGuire with her grandchildren, Susan, Elizabeth, and Frank (Atty. McGuire’s siblings). Atty. McGuire is a Trustee of the Ray & Pauline Sullivan Foundation, a prominent contributor to Catholic Charities.)


By Jacqueline Keller

Retired Diocesan Director of Communications and Board Member of Norwich Diocesan Catholic Charities.

We want this to be as complete and accurate a record as possible so please send additions, corrections, and any photos you would like to share to Communications@NorwichDiocese.net by March 30, 2022.

Catholic Charities
Diocese of Norwich

331 Main Street
Norwich, CT 06360