Celebrating 25 Years of Compassion and Hope!

25 Years…25 Days…$25,000

In 1994, Community of Hope International (COHI) began at St. Luke’s Episcopal Hospital in Houston, TX under the leadership and direction of our Founder and President Emeritus, The Rev. Dr. Helen Appelberg. Through its 25 years, COHI has grown from a presence in one hospital, in one city, to centers in over 100 churches, hospitals, hospices, and retirement centers throughout the United States and in Malawi, Africa. From 12 initial trainees, we now have over 2,200 lay chaplains who have answered the call to be a listening presence to those who are hurting and vulnerable. And, we are still growing!

We can give ourselves a big pat on the back for enduring a quarter of a century (being around for 25 years is quite an accomplishment after all!) but, more importantly, we are grateful for God’s grace in seeing us this far and honor you…our lay chaplains! Many of you have been with us for 25 years and, as you have journeyed in COHI, you have touched and transformed many lives and served as leaders, facilitators, regional representatives, and board members. 

Let’s celebrate 25 years of building Benedictine communities and bringing Christ’s love to those in need by sharing our stories and investing in the future of our ministry. In keeping with our “25 Years” theme, consider giving $25, $250, or $2,500.


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Three ways to give on the secure COHI website!

  • The Helen Appelberg Mustard Seed Fund, which will ensure that Helen’s legacy lives on by funding new COHI centers around the world. 

  • In memory or honor of someone who’s represented servant leadership in your life.

  • Monthly to help sustain COHI day-in and day-out.

You can also donate by mailing a check to
Maria Wellisch, COHI Treasurer
13706 Bluff Villas Court
San Antonio, TX 78216. 

Donate below with a credit/debit card.
COHI is a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization.

We must be self-sustaining as Benedict intended for his communities. This means we need all of us to generate a solid base to build on. As Helen Appelberg has said, “God continues to write the script for who we are to become.” Your gift will enable us to further share the transforming experience of serving in this unique pastoral care ministry which creates communities of caregivers who seek and serve Christ in one another and those they meet. 

Click on our Case for Support below to see how your gift will help us move forward in 2020.

COHI is as relevant today as it was at its founding. Join us in being part of the next 25 years!


A COHI anonymous donor will match $1,500 from another individual or group! Let’s see if we can get some additional challenges going as we celebrate 25 years together.

Celebrate in Your Centers

Share photos from your Circle of Care meetings of your celebrations by sending them to your regional representative. Birthday cakes are definitely appropriate!


We also invite you to make your gift in memory or honor of someone who’s represented servant leadership in your life. Please click on the DONATE NOW below and then click on the Helen Appelberg Mustard Seed Fund. Note in the additional comments box below the name of the person you wish to honor or memorialize, and also provide contact information if you would like us to notify anyone about your gift. We will not include the donation amount but we'll send them a 3" x 5" card (below).

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