A video introducing the 2014 Catholic Services Appeal has been released by the diocesan Office of Stewardship and Development.
Steve Tarnowski, director of the department, wrote and produced the eight-minute video, which can be viewed online at the Superior Catholic Herald website.
“The video is an opportunity for Bishop to speak to all parishes,” Tarnowski explained. “He can’t be at all parishes at once.”
As parishes across the 16-county diocese prepare to kick off the annual appeal, they are wondering how to approach parishioners after the historic Faith in Our Future campaign.
Tarnowski has gotten a number of phone calls posing the question, “Can we expect people to give to this?”
His response is the majority of parish members elected not to support the $16 million Faith in Our Future campaign, and those parishioners represent “another type of giver.”
“We also know that many regular annual appeal donors chose not to give to the Faith in Our Future campaign,” he added. “That leaves us with a strong pool of potential donors.”
A total of 9,135 households out of 30,000 – fewer than 30 percent – contributed to Faith in Our Future, according to Tarnowski. Donors knew the endowment-building gift was “over and above their normal giving,” unlike the annual appeal, which funds everyday services – youth ministry, religious education and vocational guidance are all highlighted in the video.
Tarnowski also pointed out the Catholic Services Appeal’s much smaller goal – $2 million – is more manageable for both parishes and parishioners and represents a shorter-term commitment. Pledges are paid off in a year, rather than over a four-year period.
Across the diocese, parishes will launch their fundraising efforts in August and September.