Press Release

Annual CRS Rice Bowl program Kicks-off with Lent, Aids Local, Global Community

Diocese-Green-Bay-LogoGREEN BAY, Wis. (Feb. 4, 2016) -- This Lent marks the 41st anniversary of CRS Rice Bowl, the largest and longest-running Lenten program in the United States. Known for its characteristic "rice bowl," millions of Catholics have used this initiative to respond to the struggles of people around the world who cannot meet their basic needs. Through 41 years of Lenten prayer, fasting, and almsgiving, Catholics have contributed $250 million to change lives in impoverished and vulnerable communities.

Rice Bowl Changes Lives of the Poor

"Through the generous donations of people in the Diocese of Green Bay to CRS Rice Bowl, lives of the poor are being changed locally and throughout the world," said Eric Weydt, diocesan Catholic Social Justice Coordinator. "I think Pope Francis said it best when he remarked, 'These works remind us that faith finds expression in concrete everyday actions meant to help our neighbors in body and spirit: by feeding, visiting, comforting and instructing them.'"

Seventy-five percent of the CRS Rice Bowl donations go toward supporting programs in 93 countries overseas, while twenty-five percent remain in the diocese where they were given and are distributed through local grants. Religious (Catholic and non-Catholic) and secular organizations based in counties within the Diocese of Green Bay are encouraged to apply for these grants. CRS Rice Bowl funds projects that benefit immigrant or refugee populations in northeastern Wisconsin who are struggling to meet their basic material needs (such as food, shelter, healthcare, literacy and counseling services.)

Resources Available for All

The program has expanded over the years to provide individuals, families, educators, and churches with Lenten resources and activities for all ages. Through their website, active social media channels, and new CRS Rice Bowl phone app, they provide free downloads, printable activities, engaging videos, lesson plans, reflections, recipes and more, to encourage deeper prayer and greater learning about our brothers and sisters around the world. CRS Rice Bowl materials are available in English and Spanish in print, on the web and through the mobile app. To donate and to learn more about CRS Rice Bowl visit or download the app from the iTunes or Google Play stores.

Applications for CRS Rice Bowl grants will be accepted from February 10 to March 25, 2016. Grant criteria and application forms are available for download. You may also receive a hard copy by contacting Eric Weydt, Catholic Social Justice Coordinator, in the Department of Living Justice at (920) 272-8344 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .


Who We Are

The Catholic Diocese of Green Bay works to bring the Good News of Jesus Christ by helping people in need and by providing academic, leadership and spiritual formation opportunities to parish and school leaders. Established in 1868, the Diocese is composed of 324,000 Catholics in 16 counties: Brown, Calumet, Door, Florence, Forest, Kewaunee, Langlade, Manitowoc, Marinette, Menominee, Oconto, Outagamie, Shawano, Waupaca, Waushara and Winnebago.


Justine Lodl
Director of Communications
Phone: (920) 272-8213
E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Sarah Bradford
Communications Coordinator
Phone: (920) 272-8209
E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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