CR-opioid conference-640x480px
Medical and Counseling

Response to the Opioid Addiction Crisis

Learn how Catholic Charities is working closely with parishes to address the opioid crisis throughout the 21 counties and seven cities within the Diocese of Arlington.

Responding to the Opioid Crisis

At the urging of Bishop Michael Burbidge, Catholic Charities is leading the diocesan response to the opioid crisis. We held a summer workshop and a fall conference exploring the opioid epidemic. Following discussion with pastors we conducted a needs assessment of support services that are available throughout the Diocese. See this resource for available services.

Catholic Charities is working with parishes to provide a spiritual and supportive response to individuals and families struggling with opioid addiction, as well as spreading awareness about the crisis.

To address the epidemic, 25 members of Catholic Charities staff received additional training in dealing with opioid and other addictions from field experts who covered assessment, symptoms, and treatment of opioid addiction.  Clinicians from the following programs attended:

Family Services; Pregnancy and Adoption Support; Family Reunification; St Margaret of Cortona; and Christ House.

We provide counseling services at 17 parishes throughout the Diocese, as well as at Catholic Charities locations. Our clinicians refer patients to inpatient and detox services or provide critical clinical support to family members dealing with addiction. For more information about counseling see here.

Our clinical staff is also available to parishes and the community for general information sessions, talks and responses to frequently asked questions.

Catholic Charities is helping parishes organize parish resource committees with parishioners who are appointed by their pastors and are passionate social workers, addiction specialists, medical professionals, parents and others. These committees will assist both the community and parishioners whose families are struggling with this issue.  Committee members will be on the front line offering help, accompaniment, prayers and resources.

We will be holding quarterly meetings for parishioners and others to gather to share best practices, receive training and share information to create a diocesan support for best practices for addressing the opioid epidemic

Schedule of Prayer, Training and Networking for the Parish Resource Committees:

    1. April 29, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., St. John Neumann.
    2. August 7, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., location TBD
    3. November 6, 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. location TBD
    4. February 21, 2019, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., location TBD

We will expand our prayerful resources with parish prayer warrior teams committed to praying and supporting those suffering from this crisis.

For more information please contact Dr. Michael Horne at mhorne@ccda.net. 

To see videos from the Fall 2018 conference, please watch this playlist.

Listen to stories about addiction and how the Church is responding in this USCCB podcast featuring Bishop Burbidge, two young men struggling with addiction, and a mom who began a support program for families struggling with addiction.  

Podcast