In May, 2016, Mary’s Shelter became a Good Counsel home, and a wonderful renewal has taken place. The new moniker, “Good Counsel Mary’s Shelter Gulf Coast,” while quite a mouthful, best describes who we are and what we believe.
Over the past year, no pregnant woman in need, regardless of her personal circumstances, has been turned away. While this presents challenges, as our residents may suffer from abuse, mental illness, and drug addiction, it allows us to witness to those most in need. GCMSGC provides a loving home for all.
In the past year, GCMSGC has provided a home for 52 women, and 15 babies have been born to resident moms. All of our moms who do not have a high school diploma are enrolled in GED classes at Faulkner in Gulf Shores. They attend classes four days per week, and one of our resident moms has received her diploma. Three of our residents will take their “final exams” at the end of this month. In addition, we have residents in cosmetology school, phlebotomist training, and medical assistant school. One of our moms is working and going to school, has purchased a car, and we are assisting her in securing housing as she begins her transition.
In an effort to minister to the spiritual as well as physical needs, our resident moms are urged to attend a church of their choosing each Sunday. At present, we have two moms in RCIA classes with Fr. Jim Dane from St. Thomas By-the-Sea in Orange Beach. We have daily Bible study, and celebrate Mass monthly in our new chapel. On Monday nights, a volunteer comes in to teach our residents St. John Paul II’s “Theology of the Body.”
Currently, we have nine resident moms and ten children. We recently had a “baby boom,” and were blessed with the arrival of five babies in as many weeks.
Please continue to pray often for our moms and babies, and know that in our daily prayers at the home we are praying for you, our benefactors.