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A Dream Come True on the Feast of St. Clare

By Mary Kate Griffin

A Dream Come True on the Feast of St. Clare

About 15 years ago, Claire Capelle Pizzuti woke up from a dream depicting the horrors of abortion. She was so disturbed that she told her mother they had to do something to help women. So Kim Capelle, Claire’s mom, and other family members worked to organize a fundraising walk for a local crisis pregnancy center.

Although crisis pregnancy centers in South Carolina are doing incredible work, there are few safety nets in place for pregnant women who find themselves without a place to live.

So Claire had another, better dream. This time she dreamt of a home for unwed mothers — a place to care for women and their babies and to help them grow.

After 11 years of searching, planning, preparing, being told no, finding God’s yes, St. Clare’s Home opened its doors on the feast of St. Clare of Assisi, Aug. 11.

This maternity home is located in Greenville County and provides housing and educational care to expectant women, and their already born children if needed. Moms who choose life and are in need of shelter and security will be educated on parenting, Catholic family planning and independent living skills all while being cared for and kept safe. The moms will also have an opportunity to further their education.

Women are considered for residence in St. Clare's Home regardless of race, religion or background. Two pregnant mothers were already in the home by its opening. One of the women had been living in a bug-infested trailer, an unsanitary environment for an expectant mother. She was able to find a safe and habitable place to live and have her baby.


“I’m so grateful to be here in this beautiful place where I can be with my baby,” she said. “Without this place, we’d be torn apart. My daughter is my sunshine.”


The home’s location and women’s names are not published so that they may remain protected. It is staffed by Sisters of St. Michael the Archangel Stella Mary and Theresa Adeboye. The sisters came all the way from Ado-Ekiti, Nigeria, to help serve women and their babies who seek refuge at the home. Sister Stella Mary is a registered nurse, and Sister Theresa is getting her masters in counseling.

“We see that there is a need for us in this home, to bring hope to the hopeless,” Sister Stella Mary said. “We are here to assist them, to enable them to live happily and to feel that they belong because they are created by God and He loves them.”

The sisters’ prayer for the ministry is that more women come to the home and are shown love and joy. Some of the mothers have no place else to go, due to abuse or lack of resources.

Sister Theresa said she hopes that more women will feel safe there. “I was sent here to use my skills and knowledge to help these young mothers, to be here for them and to show love, in any way I can.”

The very first week of its opening, one of the mothers gave birth to a beautiful baby boy.

Claire’s dream has come true.


Visit

stclareshomesc.org to learn more, donate or volunteer.


Mary Kate Griffin is a public relations student at the University of South Carolina who interned with the diocese this summer.