Last weekend I spoke at all the Masses regarding the wrap-up of our Debt Retirement Appeal. Seeing as this is the time of year when people are traveling for graduations, confirmations, picking up children from college, etc. I thought I would reprint that talk for those who may have been out of town.
Time goes by rather quickly and it seems hard to believe that it was three years ago this month that we launched our Debt Retirement Appeal with the hopes of retiring a significant amount of the debt left on our Atrium and School Entrance building projects as well as providing funding for some important and needed capital improvements. The Appeal resulted in approximately $2 Million in pledges. The Appeal draws to a close this month and I am happy to share that the Appeal was an overall success and the vast majority of the pledges have been fulfilled – to all who pledged and gave, thank you.
It’s interesting to note too, as our attention turns to summer, that next month will be the first time since 2007 that St. Mary’s does not have an active capital campaign unfolding. In 2007 there was the launching of the Trust in the Lord Campaign to finance the Atrium and School Entrance projects, then followed the Faith in Our Future Campaign which took place throughout the Archdiocese and as that drew to a close we launched our Debt Retirement Appeal. Over these years we have made approximately $6.4 Million worth of improvements and needed repairs and have been able, thanks to your generosity, to have paid for 90% of them over these years.
As we move into the future, we do not see, at this point, the need to move towards another appeal, but will instead service the remaining debt through our normal parish operations. This is only possible because of your previous generosity to the various campaigns which have unfolded, but also because of your generous contributions on a weekly basis to the parish.
A few specific notes, if you had pledged to the Debt Retirement Appeal three years ago and have not yet had the opportunity to fulfill your pledge, if it is at all possible to do so that would be a great gift to the entire parish community and would help us service the remainder of the debt. If you are new to St. Mary’s or were not able to pledge or give to our Appeal you may want to consider giving and your generosity would be greatly appreciated. Finally, as I mentioned before, so many things rely on the regular weekly offerings, so we are deeply grateful for your continued generosity and to continue to reflect on the various gifts that God has given us and how some of those gifts can be used on behalf of the entire parish.
As our parish fiscal year draws to a close I am happy to share that the parish is on sound financial footing both in regular operations as well as in regards to the status of the debt. The parish has grown and we have seen, especially last year, an explosion of young children in the parish – in 2015 alone we had 78 baptisms. Our school has a solid enrollment and has a waiting list for kindergarten and the ministry of the parish continues to unfold on a day to day basis.
Thank you again for your generosity to the Debt Retirement Appeal and thank you for your regular weekly offerings – St. Mary’s is well positioned for the future and to continue to serve the Lord as is our call and that is made possible because of your generosity and the goodness of God. Thank you.
It’s hard to believe that the school year is drawing to a close and, at least when I write this article, the weather has finally turned warm and sunny! A blessed Memorial Day to all of you, a very special thank you to all of our veterans, and as I take my normal bulletin article hiatus over the summer months I hope and pray that this summer is a time of joy, rest and peace!