SALT LAKE CITY — Catholic Community Services of Utah recognized the Presiding Bishopric of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the former coach of the Utah Jazz and his wife, a community service center at the University of Utah and a 10-year-old girl for their humanitarian outreach efforts Oct. 24, 2013.
During the Humanitarian Awards Dinner, held in the Grand Ballroom of the Little America Hotel in downtown Salt Lake City, leaders of Catholic Community Services honored Bishop Gary E. Stevenson and his counselors in the LDS Church’s Presiding Bishopric, Bishop Gérald Caussé and Bishop Dean M. Davies; Frank and Barbara Layden, and 10-year-old “unsung hero” Armani McFarland. Also recognized as Partner of the Year was the University of Utah Lowell Bennion Community Services Center.
During the event, Bishop Stevenson expressed his “esteem and appreciation” for the Catholic Church and to Catholic Community Services for their community outreach and charity.
“It is said that in great affairs, men show themselves as they wish to be seen, and in small things, they show themselves as they are. We note the small things done each day by Catholic Community Services in soup kitchens, in rehabilitation centers or food banks, which tell us who you really are.”
He said the bishopric accepted the recognition with “institutional representation” of the LDS Church.
Bishop Causse, who could not attend the event because he is out of the country, spoke in a prerecorded message. He praised the humanitarian efforts of members of preceding LDS Church presiding bishoprics, who laid the foundation for the work currently being accomplished. “I would also like to express my deep admiration to Catholic Community Services for the services you render in the community,” he said.
Bishop Davies said “hunger, homelessness and inclement weather do not discriminate. They do not respect age, gender, race or religion, and they impact virtually every community, every street and perhaps even every family. That men and women of all faiths and persuasions come together to address these significant and worthy causes should not surprise us.”
During her remarks, Barbara Layden recalled growing up with a widowed mother who received help and support from the Catholic Church.
Frank Layden said that when tables are full, people who have much should “help those that might be less fortunate than ourselves.”
Quoting baseball champion Jackie Robinson, he said, "A life is only as important as the impact it has on other lives.”
Armani McFarland, the youngest award recipient, spoke about wanting to help others after she learned about the plight of hungry children. “Please, everyone, reach out and help someone,” she said.
University of Utah vice president Fred C. Esplin called it a privilege for the Lowell Bennion Community Services Center to partner with CCS.
Closing the event, Bishop John C. Wester of the Catholic Dioceses of Salt Lake City called the evening “a wonderful opportunity to acknowledge your goodness in our community and the wonderful ways in which you have touched all of our lives.”