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Coming soon: Guardian Angels set to open county's only homeless shelter

Organizers plan on throwing open this door at Guardian Angels Catholic Church in September to Washington County homeless families. Bulletin photo by Mike Longaecker

Denny Farrell was well aware of the homeless population in Washington County.

So when three Guardian Angels Catholic Church members who hoped to bring a shelter to the church approached Farrell - the parish administrator and longtime volunteer with Twin Cities-based homeless organizations - he was all ears.

"I totally understood what was happening," he said.

The effort got immediate traction at the church and the surrounding faith community.

Now organizers at Guardian Angels are eyeing a Sept. 3 date to open what officials say will be the only homeless shelter in Washington County.

Guardian Angels - a church that counts more than half of its parishioners as Woodbury residents - is readying its former rectory to serve up to six families a night, 365 days a year through the pilot program.

"They deserve a place to live and it's our responsibility to help them out," said Woodbury resident Sally Krupich, one of the three women who organized the shelter program.

Read the full story, which includes a full run-down on the shelter - and a closer look at homelessness in Washington County - in the July 25 print edition.

Mike Longaecker

Mike Longaecker is the regional public safety reporter for RiverTown Multimedia. His coverage area spans St. Croix and Pierce counties. Longaecker served from 2011-2015 as editor of the Woodbury Bulletin. A University of Wisconsin-River Falls graduate, Longaecker previously reported for the Red Wing Republican Eagle and for the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau. You can follow him on Twitter at @Longaecker

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