Sarah Hanley

“Take care of your spiritual life, your relationship with God, because this is the backbone of everything we do and everything we are.” -Pope Francis

At the start of every new year, we are filled with hope and the promise of new beginnings. Many of us look forward to embarking on new journeys and bringing about positive changes in our lives. To fulfill this promise, we often make New Year’s resolutions such as eating healthier, exercising more, and spending more time with our loved ones. However, instead of solely focusing on personal goals, we should also consider living out the Corporal Works of Mercy in the New Year. By caring for others and striving to see Christ in those we meet, we can further become our best selves while serving God.

When we reflect on our baptismal promise, incorporating the Corporal Works of Mercy into our resolutions should come with ease. When we live a virtuous life, we strive to be closer to Jesus, not only in words but also in prayer and action. We offer comfort, kindness, and service to others, and we spread hope.

The words of Pope Francis referenced above serve as a powerful reminder to prioritize our spiritual well-being and our connection with God, the father of humanity. Our spiritual life forms the bedrock of our existence and shapes our actions. The role of charity in our spiritual lives can take many forms ranging from small acts of kindness like a friendly smile to a stranger to contributions to charitable organizations and foundations like The Catholic Foundation of Greater Philadelphia (CFGP). By embracing charitable practices, we can show others the love of God while positively impacting the world around us and fostering a sense of compassion and generosity in our communities.

At CFGP, we are a community foundation driven by a deep commitment to philanthropy and the teachings of Jesus Christ. Our foundation is built on strong principles of faith and service. We pride ourselves on our ability to meet the unique needs of both donors and Catholic institutions. With our charitable fund management and development consulting services, we aim to make strategic investments that will secure the future of our faith.

As we embark on a fresh year, it’s the perfect opportunity to think about the positive and spiritual changes we can make. From healthier food choices to prioritizing exercise and quality time with loved ones, to sharing our time, abilities, and resources, we can make a difference in the lives of those around us.  And, by living in accordance with the teachings of the gospels, we can embody the light of Christ and make a positive impact on the world.

May this New Year bring you blessings of health and happiness. To learn more about CFGP, please visit


Sarah O. Hanley is the President and Chief Executive Officer of The Catholic Foundation of Greater Philadelphia