How one woman inspires an entire community to follow Christ’s call to serve others

Editor’s note: This year, Julice Curry of St. Joseph parish in Greenville has been nominated for Catholic Extension’s 2023-2024 Lumen Christi award for her volunteer work with the Sacred Heart/St. Joseph St. Vincent de Paul Society. The award, established in 1978, is given to people who radiate and reveal the light of Christ present in the communities where they serve. To read about the group of 40 other Lumen Christi award nominees, visit

By Catholic Extension

GREENVILLE – Every moment in Julice Curry’s life has been guided by her never-ending faith and belief in living life for others. Always raised to be humble, Julice’s volunteerism and her quiet philanthropy have made a true mark on her home community of Greenville.

Julice has volunteered in her current ministry at Sacred Heart/St. Joseph St. Vincent de Paul Society (SVDP) for over 30 years as former treasurer and now president. The mission helps in the form of a food pantry and donation center for clothing and other items. These activities take place in a parish that Catholic Extension helped build many years ago.

GREENVILLE – Julice Curry speaks to students at St. Joseph School on her work with St. Vincent de Paul and renovations completed with thanks to a gift from the Salvador Sarullo estate in the fall of 2022. Curry is nominated for a Lumen Christi award for radiating the light of Christ in her community. (Photo by Joanna Puddister King)

Working with over 30 volunteers to serve an average of 200 clients per week, Julice touches the lives of over 12,500 residents annually from Greenville and the surrounding Washington County area. This also comes with the help of other faith-based institutions and nonprofit organizations Julice has established partnerships with. Everyone who interacts with Julice sees the “light” in her eyes and feels the love in her heart when helping these local communities, whose needs have only increased through the years.

Through her enormous vision and leadership, Julice has been able to magnify the impact of SVDP. This past year Julice led her organization and volunteers to the completion of a newly renovated space to house the necessary food storage and donation items from the community.

Her outreach has also inspired youth to learn the value of helping others and the true importance of charity and ministry to others. Students from private, public and parochial schools have joined the regular volunteers of SVDP, committing their time during school vacations, holidays and summer breaks.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Julice continued to serve her friends by making home visits to ensure they had the basic necessities of life. Julice also regularly prays with residents. She makes sure the ministry is also about elevating peoples’ sense of dignity, bringing them joy and sharing the gift of faith when possible.

Julice’s dedication to her faith makes her work so meaningful: “My goal on earth is to love as Christ loves, to bring joy and comfort as He does, to be His disciple by being His eyes, His hands, and His feet.”

Leading a life with purpose and a focus on serving Christ and others in need moves Julice every day. She has never turned down anyone, “no matter how the odds are stacked against her or how stressful a project,” noted Martha Allen, executive director of SVDP’s partner organization, Extra Table. Her example touches the residents, volunteers and greater Greenville community, inspiring them to be beacons of hope to tackle the needs in their communities.