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Mercy Medallion



Father Lloyd Thiel has been the Executive Director of the Capuchin Community Center “Soup Kitchen” for the past eleven years. The “Soup Kitchen,” located on the lower east side of Detroit, began in 1929 in response to the great need of the unemployed during the Depression. Its doors have been open ever since and the numbers of meals served is well into the billions. The center served over one million meals in 1988 alone.
Father Lloyd’s life of serving the poor began when he graduated from high school in 1944 and joined the Capuchin Brothers. After his college graduation, he engaged in theological studies in preparation for ordination into the priesthood. He spent 15 years at St. Lawrence High School Seminary in Wisconsin where he had attended school teaching Latin and raising funds for seminary. During that time, he spent a year acquiring his master’s degree in classical languages from the University of Michigan.
As a Capuchin, Father Lloyd had also directed young men who were interested in the Capuchin way of life. He has assisted at various Catholic parishes on weekends, particularly Sacred Heart Parish in Roseville.
A true advocate of Detroit’s poor, Father Lloyd has also worked tirelessly in the development of the COTS program for homeless. He is currently a member of the Board of Directors for COTS and has been since its beginning in 1982. He has also been instrumental in the development of the Gleaners Community Food Bank, located just few blocks away from the Community Center.
In his never-ending quest of raise funds for the Community Center, he has become a member of the National Catholic Development Conference and the National Society of Fund Raising Executives.
Father Lloyd’s devotion of the Soup Kitchen can be witnessed in the direction and the encouragement he gives to the staff and volunteers in his development of funding sources for the Center, and perhaps, most importantly, in his ministry to make people more aware of the needs of the poor and less fortunate so that everyone can become involved in bringing about a more just society.

Award was presented at the 1989 Works of Mercy Dinner.

Mercy College of Detroit

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