The Anawim Community



Founding of the Anawim Community

The Anawim CommunityThe Anawim Community, a Catholic religious community established in 1982, grew out the Young People Who Care, Inc. mission that was established in 1976 by Sr. Therese Dush, a Sister of Mercy of the Erie Diocese. (For more information about Young People Who Care, Inc. go to From the mission program of Young People Who Care, many young people came to experience the joys of living lives rooted in prayer and service of others. Some of the long term volunteers living with Sr. Therese and ministering to the needs of the poor began to feel called to making this life a permanent commitment. Bishop Murphy, the Bishop of the Diocese of Erie, made a pastoral visit and saw the unique spirit and charism lived by Sr. Therese and the volunteers. He The Anawim Communityrecommended that Sr. Therese pursue the founding of a new religious community for the Diocese of Erie because he saw what a unique gift this community was to the Church and the people of God. The The Anawim CommunityAnawim Community (Anawim means “the poor ones of God” or the “little ones”) received temporary approbation of the Catholic Church in 1982. It received its final approbation in1994 under Bishop Donald Trautman. Its members make private vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience, and seek to live out the message of the Gospel through living the Beatitudes and making themselves available to the needs of the poor. The members of the Anawim Community are responsible for the ministries of Young People Who Care. The Anawim Community’s story is one of love for the poor and trust in God to provide for the needs of the Community and its ministries.


Historical Context of “The Anawim”


Scripture makes a number of references to the Anawim. The word actually means the REMNANT, a fragmented people of the Exile, the specially favored in the period of great unfaithfulness. They are those who remained faithful to Him through all the hazards of the Exile, the poverty, the oppression, the mockery, insult and humiliation, even the attacks to life itself. Through all this the Anawim, God's faithful ones, were assured the hope of a day of vindication.

The prophet Amos was the first to speak of the Anawim. His times, like ours, were characterized by the deceits of materialism, sensuality and of hollow exterior worship. Amos called the people to repentance and a change of heart. He promised through the power of Yahweh there would be a remnant of Joseph who would stay faithful (5:15).

Mary and Joseph, of the New Testament, are ideal representatives of the remnant people. Both Matthew and Luke portray them as the truest Anawim witnesses to the Gospel. Their lives reflect total faithfulness and dependence upon God through what the world regards as the impossible, the hopeless, the futile. Their absolute trust in the power of God mysteriously brought forth Jesus. Their example assures us the same hope for today.


Anawim Community - PO Box 129 - Frenchville, PA 16836 - 814.263.4518 -