Sisters of Charity of Seton Hill announce end of collaborative ministry in Fayette County
After 18 years of service to persons living in poverty in Fayette County, PA, Rendu Services, Inc. will conclude its ministry in the county and the Diocese of Greensburg by the end of 2018. The announcement was made on May 7, 2018, by Sister Barbara Einloth, SC, who chairs the Rendu Services’ Members Board, comprised of Sisters from the three provinces of Catholic Sisters who staff and fund the organization. Rendu Services was established by the Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul in 2000. The ministry and its services expanded in 2007 with the collaboration of the Sisters of Charity of Seton Hill United States Province and the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth Western Province. The Sisters have become well-known and respected for their valued ministry, but the three congregations do not have the personnel to replace the current staff in the future. Research by the Members Board of Rendu Services, the Board of Directors, and the staff concluded it is not possible to continue the ministry without the presence of the Sisters and that the closure of services is inevitable.
Rendu Services, Inc. has been an entry point to an existing network of social services in an effort to reduce the economic and social inequality often experienced by those who struggle with inadequate education, unemployment, discrimination, and developmental disabilities. The ministry has provided services that include non-invasive health screenings and referrals, health education, a food pantry under the auspices of Fayette County Community Action Agency, and supportive services for families through the Human Services Council and the Fayette County Housing Authority. The ministry has empowered persons living in poverty by connecting and collaborating with many agencies and organization without replicating services.
Fayette County is one of the poorest counties in the United States. With utmost concern for those who will be most directly affected by the decision to close Rendu Services, the Sisters have shared the decision with Bishop Edward Malesic of the Diocese of Greensburg and have developed a timeline for the transition of services. Every effort will be made in the coming months to engage and nurture local leaders who might continue some of the services in the Vincentian spirit that emphasizes respectful engagement with all persons served.