St. Luke’s Mission of Mercy Buffalo NY

St. Luke’s vision is centered on God’s call to evangelize. We seek to bring the love and mercy of God to those who feel abandoned by God. Jesus still suffers and thirsts in those in need, and in serving them, we serve Him.

We pursue this vision by:

  • Putting into action the works of mercy
  • Meeting the basic needs of the least of our brothers and sisters
  • Centering our lives on Jesus present in the Eucharist
  • Preaching with our lives the Good News of Jesus Christ

St. Luke’s is run completely by volunteers, the majority of them lay people. Not one person who works at St. Luke’s receives any salary or monetary compensation at all. We are a completely volunteer organization.

St. Luke’s is run, first and foremost, by God. It is He who provides all that we need, and He is responsible for anything good that comes out of the Mission. We are forever grateful for His great love and mercy!

The Co-Directors of St. Luke’s are Norm Paolini and Amy Betros, who are also the Co-Founders. They have been together in the ministry of serving God’s Poor for over 15 years.

There are 15 lay Missionaries at St. Luke’s. Most of these men and women live at or around the Mission and spend all of their time devoted to carrying out the corporal and spiritual works of mercy. These people commit themselves, a year at a time to living among and serving God’s poor. They take 5 simple promises of:

  • Poverty
  • Chastity
  • Obedience
  • Charity
  • Mercy

The Missionaries strive to fulfill the following spiritual requirements:

  • Daily Mass
  • Daily Eucharistic Adoration (1 hour)
  • Daily reciting of Divine Office (Morning and Evening Prayer)
  • Daily Rosary
  • Daily Divine Mercy Chaplet
  • Reading Sacred Scripture
  • Reading the Diary of St. Faustina and other spiritual writings
  • Confession at least once a month
  • Spiritual Direction once a month
  • Performing the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy

While most of the Missionaries are single men and women, God has also called two married couples to this ministry, including one couple with 9 children.

Response to Love Center Buffalo NY

When St. Adalbert’s parish school was closed in 1985, our community was gripped with grief, frustration, and a deep fear for the future. In their anxiety, many of our people sought an answer through prayer. It became abundantly clear that the choices were not ours; that He was giving us direction! We responded. Twenty-four hours after the school closing, June 26, 1985, the Response To Love Center was born.  Here, the focus is the holistic treatment of poverty: loving care of the economically deprived, the spiritually poor, the emotionally battered, the isolated, the wounded and the broken.

The mission is to build up the kingdom of God here on earth through touching peoples’ lives, helping people to grow, teaching people to love, and leading them, in turn, to respond in love to others. We show people the path to self-sufficiency by providing them a variety of compassionate programs. Clearly, the way before us here is to follow in the footsteps of Jesus.  Under the leadership of Sr. Mary Johnice Rzadkiewicz and a host of volunteers the building was transformed into a community outreach center: a center of love and acceptance for all who enter. Here, our Thrift Shop clothes the naked; our Kitchen feeds the hungry; our Chapel comforts our frail elderly in spiritual warmth; and our Food Bank and Pantry stretch our families’ thin budgets.  Through work and prayer, through listening to the voice of God Who directs us, and through that direction by responding to Love and with Love, we are stepping out in faith.

Kawelle from Buffalo to Kenya

The East African country of Kenya received independence from the British in 1963, and has since faced numerous struggles in most sectors of its governance. During the elections of 2007/2008, numerous ethnic clashes took place and forced many to seek refuge in other parts of the country by setting up IDP camps (internally displaced people) as refugees within their own country. A rural area of Maai Mahiu became the safe haven for those escaping persecution to set up tents and establish a new home. Soon after, Habitat for Humanity built small stone homes for the people within the camps that serve as basic shelter. The strength of the community continued to shine as they all contributed what little money they had to purchasing the land from the government and naming it the Village of Vumilia (meaning patience and resilience). However, Vumilia, Maai Mahiu is still faced with numerous struggles.

The largest, and perhaps most important, has been the lack of quality and affordable education for Vumilia, as well as Kenyans in general. This in turn has caused many to only complete the equivalent of an eighth grade education. Although Kenya instituted a free public education through government subsidies, the enrollment rose to larger than what the Kenyan government could afford, thus causing schools to charge large fees to make up for the gap. Less than half of Kenyans can afford the school fees beyond eighth grade, causing the enrollment for secondary school to be less than 50% in Kenya. However, even those who attend secondary school oftentimes earn diplomas for jobs the Kenyan economy cannot or does not support, thus causing even the under 50% of educated Kenyans to be unemployed and living in slums. This is where Kawelle’s story begins.

Our Story

Kawelle has decided to take initiative and create sustainable change by educating Kenyan youth in an up-and-coming trade in Kenya that the country’s economy can support. We work with local leaders and youth in Vumilia, Maai Mahiu and built/operate an IT center and school that focuses on the education of basic computer skills, advanced curriculum in web design, and encompasses an internet cafe for the entire community to utilize the tools of the world-wide-web. The IT center provides a trade Vumilia believes has created change within their community, and can be attended by all, including those who cannot attend secondary school due to fees or unacceptable grades. The center is now totally self-sustaining, 100% solar powered, and the first building in Vumilia with electricity. We have taken on the responsibility of producing knowledgeable youth who can work sustainable jobs and trades that succeed in the Kenyan economy and the world alike.

Let Them LOL from Buffalo to Sierra Leone

Many people in the world today experience moments of unjust suffering only because they lack the resources to “let them” embrace a better future. When we learned that nearly 1 billion people in our world don’t have access to clean drinking water and that everyday 4,000 children die from water related disease, we knew we had to do something. An idea emerged in the hearts of the “Let them Laugh Out Loud” creators to help bring hope to the burdened and suffering.

Laughter. Laughter is often the overflow of joy in someone’s heart. One of our founders has a unique laugh. It makes others smile and laugh when they hear it. They decided to use what they have, by putting this laugh on a ringtone. People could download the ringtone, charging their phone $3, all of that going to bring clean water to those without it. The idea was that it is more than a ring tone. It’s a voice.
 Every time your phone goes off, the ring tone is a reminder of the needs of others and that you can do something to bring hope into someone’s life who’s suffering. It’s an opportunity for you to tell the story to others as well, so they can get involved too.

Let them LOL was created in October 2009. Within the first 6 weeks, we had funds for our first clean water well in Sierra Leone, West Africa. Within a year, there were funds for 12. We have seen people in our community become inspired and empowered. They have come together in a grassroots effort to provide clean water to one of the poorest communities in the world.

As of October 2014, 75 wells are completed, bringing clean water to tens of thousands of people.

In March 2012, we opened a home for orphaned and impoverished children. 20 children are living in the home, and we are constructing additional home to care for more at risk children. We also have just finished construction of a primary school, and future plans include sustainable farming and a medical clinic.

A community here for a community there.

We are a grassroots organization. Schools, families, churches and individuals have all united together to bring hope through clean water.  Visit the fundraising tab in the menu for ideas on how to start your own campaign! You can also go to the volunteering tab to find ways to get involved hands on. To get the original ringtone, visit iTunes search “letthemlol” on the store, download and set as your ringtone.


Why Sierra Leone?
 A destructive eleven-year rebel conflict ruined much of the country’s infrastructure and continues to have
devastating effects on people’s lives. The country is ranked at the bottom of the United Nation’s Index of Developing Countries and has one of the highest under 5 mortality rates in the world. The life expectancy is 42 years old and 1 in 50 women die in child birth. In 2014 a devastating Ebola outbreak spread to Sierra Leone. And yet, despite living in extreme poverty, Sierra Leone is a beautiful country filled with resilient, beautiful people. We chose to focus on one region, in one of the poorest country in the world. Our hope is that over time, we will be able to see a lasting impact of real, sustainable change.

Harvest House South Buffalo NY


              Let us not grow weary of doing good.  If we do not relax our efforts,

 in due time  we shall reap our harvest.  Galatians 6: 9

There are four main ministries that make up Harvest House Ministries of Buffalo, NY…

ASK THE LAWYER – On Wednesday mornings a volunteer lawyer is at the ministry center to lend his advice to members of the community. He offers free legal advice on Wednesday mornings, 8:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. He has an office located in New Hope Education Center. Regrettably, no appointments are made.  Clients are seen on a first come, first served basis.