What is the Blessed Margaret of Castello Home for Crisis Pregnancies?
The Blessed Margaret of Castello Home for Crisis Pregnancies, founded in 1986, is the longest continually active crisis pregnancy home in the Delaware Valley. It is a residential home for pregnant women, offering support, guidance, and physical security in a loving atmosphere, throughout a woman’s pregnancy.
The Home offers love and support in a stable environment. Free of charge, residents receive everything needed to deliver the baby, and to begin a new, independent life with baby.
What are the services the Home can provide?
• Pregnancy counseling and classes
• Infant care and parenting skills training
• Nutrition and life skills classes
• Pregnancy tests
• Family intervention
• Housing referrals
• Adoption information and referrals
• Maternity and baby clothes
• Relationship counseling referrals
• Addiction counseling referrals
Do I have to pay for these services?
No. All services are provided free of charge, thanks to donations from generous and loving supporters.
Does the Home provide for the resident’s daily needs?
Yes. We provide food, and a secure and comfortable place to sleep and enjoy the companionship of other women, who are also preparing for motherhood.
Do you tell my family and friends that I am staying there?
No. We respect your confidentiality.
What about after I give birth? Then what?
To help prepare you for your new life, the Home networks with other institutions which provide GED classes, employment training and educational certificate programs. The Home also offers opportunities to care for the body with physical fitness, and to care for the soul with spiritual nurturing. We help provide resources with the goal of finding stable housing for you and your child.
Are all babies placed for adoption?
No. Less than 1% of our residents choose adoption. In order to help each resident make this individual and personal decision about her child’s future, the Home provides referrals to adoption counseling professionals.
What happens when a resident does not give her baby up for adoption, but chooses to raise the baby herself?
When a resident leaves, the Home provides everything she needs to get started such as formula, baby food, furniture, and clothing. If necessary, the Blessed Margaret Home will advocate for and support each resident as she secures housing.
What if I don’t feel ready to have a baby?
To help you prepare, each resident has access to classes on single parenting, infant and toddler health- care issues, breastfeeding, STDs, chastity, and abstinence. Referrals are made to professionals who can guide you in the areas of childbirth and labor, address special medical needs, and counsel on building healthy relationships.
Will you still help me after I give birth?
Former residents continue to return to the Home as needed, and will find assistance with mentoring, and have access to the pantry for infant food, clothing, and furniture.
Are any services available for the baby’s father?
The same services are available to birth fathers who are involved in the pregnancy and the early life of the baby.
How is a resident accepted into The Blessed Margaret Home?
Women are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis, after meeting with staff. If our services are not appropriate, we will refer you to an agency best suited to meet your needs. Call us at 215.245-8039 to schedule a visit.
Do I have to be Catholic or Christian to be a resident?
No. The Blessed Margaret Home loves, accepts, and cares for young women regardless of race, religion, creed, or national origin.
How can I help The Blessed Margaret Home with its ministry?
• Remember us in your prayers
• Sponsor a fund-raising event at your home, school, restaurant or parish
• Ask your employer about their gift-matching program
• Refer us to new funding sources
• Make monetary donations
• Make bequests by will or life insurance policy
• Make contributions in memory of a loved one
• Donate new baby clothing or furniture
• Use our United Way Donor Choice number (#08986)
• Volunteer your time
For more information about how to get involved in any of these ways, please call us at 215.245-8039.
Who was Blessed Margaret of Castello?
Margaret of Castello (1287-1320) is considered the patron of the unwanted. She was born dreadfully deformed; a dwarf, totally blind, suffering from severe scoliosis and so lame she could hardly walk. When she was only six years old, Margaret’s father had her walled up in a small cell attached to a forest church.
As seventeen, Margaret’s parents, seeking a miraculous cure, took her on a pilgrimage to the medieval Italian city of Castello. When the miracle failed to occur, she was abandoned by her parents.
Margaret became a beggar and was befriended by other beggars. She eventually became a Dominican and dedicated herself to visiting the imprisoned and to comforting the sick and dying. She was always compassionate, sensitive and understanding to others and brought peace wherever she went.
Margaret is interred under the main altar of the Church of Saint Dominic, Citta-di-Castello, Italy. Two hundred years after her death, on June 9, 1558, her body was exhumed and although never embalmed, was perfectly preserved. Margaret’s body is still incorrupt some 600 years after her death.
THE BLESSED MARGARET OF CASTELLO HOME
FOR CRISIS PREGNANCIES
P.O. BOX 361
BENSALEM, PA 19020