Christ Child Society chapters in diocese mark 15 years of serving families in need

Pictured assembling a layette Nov. 15 for a needy family with a newborn are Christ Child of Central Illinois members, from left, Shari Paris of the Pontiac Circle, Pam Tomlianovich of the Peoria Circle; and Judy Weber, also of the Pontiac Circle. (The Catholic Post/Tom Dermody)

The two chapters of the Christ Child Society in the Diocese of Peoria are marking 15 years of helping to provide a good start to families in need who have welcomed newborn babies.

Members of the Christ Child Society of the Quad Cities celebrated 15 years as a chartered chapter with an open house on Nov. 9 at the Butterfield Center in Moline. (Provided photo)

The Christ Child Society of Central Illinois and the Christ Child Society the Quad Cities were recognized with 15-year certificates at the organization’s national conference on Sept. 29. Leaders of the two chapters celebrated the milestone this month with local volunteers at gatherings in Moline and Peoria.

Organization members assemble and distribute layettes containing supplies a newborn would need during the first weeks of life, including receiving blankets, hats, and other items handmade by members with love.

The Christ Child Society came to the Diocese of Peoria in 2005 through a request Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC, made to members of the Bishop’s Commission on Women in the Church and in Society. The organization had active members in the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend, Indiana, where he had served as auxiliary bishop before coming to central Illinois in 2002.

Both the Christ Child Society of Central Illinois and the Christ Child Society of the Quad Cities were chartered in October 2008.

The Quad Cities chapter provides layettes to four birth centers in the Genesis and Unity Point health systems. The large layette, valued at $100, includes onesies, one piece footed pajamas, socks, bibs, a sleep sack, diapers, wipes, a toddler board book, and more. Education on sleep safety and soothing a crying baby is also included.

Beth Miller, left, president of the Christ Child Society of Central Illinois, presented the certificate recognizing the chapter’s 15 years of service during the organization’s quarterly meeting Nov. 15 at the Family Resources Center in Peoria. Pictured are past presidents of the chapter, continuing from left, Kay Gray, Ingrid Ruscheinski, Carol Romanowski, Judy Hayes (holding the certificate), Kathy Stomberg, Father John Verrier (spiritual advisor) and Therese Peck. (The Catholic Post/Tom Dermody)

A mini layette set, valued at $30, is given to each new mother who has a positive pregnancy test at Women’s Choice Center. Members also support the Rock Island County Head Start Literacy Program and  offer handwritten cards offering prayers and condolences as well as other resources to mothers who deliver a child stillborn or through miscarriage.

The Christ Child Society of Illinois supplies layettes to 13 hospitals and clinics in the Diocese of Peoria. To date, the group has given out 210 layettes in 2023. In addition, this year the chapter undertook a special service project to support the Ronald McDonald House of Central Illinois, which provides temporary housing to families with loved ones in a nearby medical center. On Nov. 15, following their quarterly meeting, members delivered cartloads of supplies to the Ronald McDonald House from that organization’s “wish list.”

To learn more about membership in or support of the Christ Child Society of Central Illinois, visit and click the link under “Ministries” or email presccspeoria@yahoo.comm. For the history and current activities of the Christ Child Society of the Quad Cities, visit


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