Upcoming capital campaign to benefit everyone in the Diocese

October 14, 2021

Capital campaign logo

The upcoming “Ignite! A Life. A Church. A Community.” campaign is an investment in people – in priests, women religious, deacons, mothers, fathers, teachers, catechists, and, especially, in children.

True to its name, this campaign seeks to spark the flame of faith in one life, one Church, and one community at a time, invoking the Spirit’s assistance in carrying out the universal call to missionary discipleship and a bold vision for passing on our faith to future generations.

Set to officially begin in 2022, the $45 million diocesan-wide effort will establish an endowment to provide more financial aid to Catholic school families.

It will also provide additional funding for the Diocese’s growing number of seminarians, support priests in their retirement, and promote parish renewal and vibrancy initiatives.

Further, a percentage of funds raised at each of the 80 parishes will be returned to parishes through a “parish share” component.

Catholics Schools Endowment, $25 million

Catholic education has never been more critical to our future.

In the current funding model, tuition is lower than the actual cost of education and parishes with schools provide anywhere from 40-70 percent of their ordinary offertory income to support school operations.

A $25 million endowment will complement the Catholic Tuition Organization tax-credit program, significantly boosting the amount of financial aid available each year to families in need.

Establishing this endowment will allow more families to share the blessings of Catholic education with their children and ensure the long-term vitality of our parishes and schools.

Support for seminarians, $5 million

Over the last 10 years, the Diocese has ordained 17 priests, with five ordained priests in 2021 alone!

Currently, the Diocese has the resources to support up to 18 seminarians each year, yet projected class sizes for the foreseeable future are between 20 and 25 seminarians.

Bolstering the endowed Diocesan Seminarian Fund by $5 million, while continuing to support seminarian education through the Annual Diocesan Appeal and Annual Seminarian Appeal will make it possible to have a sustainable funding source to support the growing number of men discerning the priesthood.

Support for priests, $2 million

Priests have given their lives to God in service to the people of our Diocese, and it is our honor and commitment as a faith community to provide them with a dignified retirement.

With 38 retired priests in the Diocese and an expected 18 retiring in the next 10 years, adequately funding the Priest’s Pension Fund will be an ongoing challenge that we must meet head on. Increasing the Priest’s Pension Fund by $2 million will bring the fund more in line with the annual need over the next 10 years.

Parish Renewal and Vibrancy, $3.5 million

A key mission of the Diocese is to help people of all ages grow in their relationship with God and live as disciples of Jesus in their homes and communities. Formation begins at the home and continues at the parish, and families and catechetical leaders throughout the Diocese need the resources, training, education, and programming to fulfill this critical mission.

The campaign will provide $3.5 million to help deepen and enrich the religious lives of all by supporting efforts at both the parish and diocesan level.

Parish Share, $7.5 million

Ensuring vibrant parish life is a major priority of the campaign.

A percentage of funds raised at each of our 80 parishes will be returned directly to each parish to be used for its own needs. These funds will total approximately $7.5 million.

Parish share funds will enable each parish to grow in its pastoral vision and address areas such as building expansion, repairs and renovations, parish endowments, debt relief or the capital needs of a parochial school. Pastors and parish leaders will determine how best to use these resources.

Preparations for public phase underway

Throughout October and November, pastors and parish leaders will be attending campaign orientation meetings that preview how the campaign will unfold at each parish.

These meetings will be led by the Diocesan Stewardship Office and the Steier Group, the Catholic fundraising firm that is assisting with the effort.

For additional information about the campaign, visit the campaign website.