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CRS Rice Bowl

  • Rankings of Top Ten CRS Rice Bowl institutions in the Diocese of Metuchen for 2016
  • New Brunswick parish teens helped tabulate 2016 CRS Rice Bowl totals for the diocese
  • Recipes, such as this one for 2016 from Honduras, help connect us with natives from Rice Bowl countries.
    Recipes, such as this one for 2016 from Honduras, help connect us with natives from Rice Bowl countries.
  • Families such as these benefit from CRS programs that focus on small coffee farmers.

Hungering to Learn in Honduras

Father James Martin, SJ | What is Lent?

CRS RICE BOWL is the annual national Lenten program produced by Catholic Relief Services and overseen by CCST in the Diocese of Metuchen. In a focused and timely way, CRS Rice Bowl calls participants to pray, fast, learn and give. 

Lent 2017 begins on March 1, Ash Wednesday.

2016 was the best CRS Rice Bowl year in Metuchen Diocese history for participating institutions (41) and funds raised (more than $160.000).

More than 14,000 groups contribute to CRS Rice Bowl nationwide. In the Diocese of Metuchen, an average of 35 parishes or other institutions have participated in the program over the last five years. Diocesan donations increased sharply over the years 2007-08, with donations approaching $80,000 in both years, and have stayed at that level or above ever since, with the $160,000 mark broken in 2016.  Scroll below for the attachment file for parish totals for the previous years 2006-16.

For the last eight years, three parishes in the southern portion of the diocese, Queenship of Mary in Plainsboro, Nativity of Our Lord in Monroe Township, and St. Augustine of Canterbury in Kendall Park, have waged a fierce battle for Rice Bowl supremacy, with Queenship taking the crown in 2016, just nipping St. Augustine Parish.

The Catholic Spirit, in its July 31, 2014 edition, chronicled the very successful 2014 campaign, and in early 2015, previewed that year.

Out of the funds raised by CRS Rice Bowl, seventy-five percent goes directly to development projects sponsored by Catholic Relief Services overseas and twenty-five percent stays in the Diocese for local use.  The 25% that stays in the Metuchen diocese is used for food security projects and Metuchen-guided global solidarity projects relating to food. CCST administers a CRS Rice Bowl Grant Fund, which has a Sept. 15 application deadline each year.

Overseas CRS Rice Bowl funds projects that will help communities have greater access to food security. Food security means programs that will help people gain access to enough food that will meet their daily nutritional needs.

Programs that help increase the amount of food security include agricultural training projects that teach better farming methods to produce more food; clean water projects to bring clean water into communities and improve people's health; micro-credit projects that give small loans to help people start or expand their own businesses and provide more for their families; and mother/child health projects that teach mothers about good nutrition for themselves and their children. CRS Rice Bowl does not fund emergency relief projects.

CRS Rice Bowl began as "Operation Rice Bowl" in Allentown, PA as an inter-religious response to the drought in the African Sahel. In 1975, a Catholic priest, Jewish rabbi, and Protestant Ministers organized this effort to galvanize the entire city around the issue of hunger.

To see if your parish or school is involved in CRS Rice Bowl,  click on the attachment below that lists Metuchen collection amounts by institution for the last ten years.

CRS Rice Bowl Collection History- Diocese of Metuchen

75% Funds Sent


25% Funds
for CCST


Rice Bowl

1998 $31,108.03  n/a n/a 0 n/a
1999 $38,100.00  n/a n/a 0 n/a
2000 $31,105.98  n/a n/a 0 n/a
2001 $34,484.14  19 n/a 0 n/a
2002 $35,084.33  20 n/a 0 n/a
2003 $44,092.23  20 $14,697.41  0 $21,000 
2004 $42,694.11  19 $14,231.37  $8,661.00  $19,654 
2005 $36,556.89  17 $12,185. 63 $4,625.00  $9,000 
2006 $38,847.75  28 $12,949.25  $10,107.29  $9,000 
2007 $59,121.00  28 $19,707.00  $9,230.00  $11,000 
2008 $59,913.62  33 $19,971.21  $11,180.00  $24,500 
2009 $33,275.58  32 $11,091.86  $18,160.93  $19,500 
2010 $74,682.26  33 $24,894.09  $19,690.85  $36,900 
2011 $56,168,64 34 $18,722.88  $17,206.39  $40,500 
2012 $62,932.23 30 $20,977.41 $18,602.94


2013 $68,437.25 35 $22,812.41 $9,438.00


2014 $89,175.87


$29.725.29 $14,755.42 $52,500
2015 $93,612.35 38 $31,204.35 $9,549.30 $51,500