Over the past six months since the Diocese first launched the Living Our Mission campaign in fourteen pilot parishes, many people have come forward to offer pledges of support to this historic effort. To date, $10,248,566 has been raised from the parishes participating in the first wave of the campaign. This puts the Diocese ahead of goal for the pilot group and builds strong momentum towards achieving its overall goal of $65 million in raised dollars.
All parishes will participate in this campaign in one of four waves during 2014 or 2015 with the next wave occurring in the Fall. In addition to raising money for the major challenges facing our Church such as strengthening our parishes and schools, rekindling commitment in our younger generations, educating our future priests, training our lay leaders and taking care of our retired priests, parishes will also be meeting their urgent local needs. The parish share of the total goal of $65 million is $22 million which represents the largest portion of the dollars raised from this campaign.
One of the parishes that participated in the first wave was Holy Cross in Lynchburg. They set out to raise a goal of $627,000 and recently became the first parish to eclipse their goal by raising $699,580. Their parish receives 1/3rd back up to their goal and 2/3rd back for anything collected over the goal. With the funds returned, they will be able to hire a Coordinator of Youth Ministry and a Parish Young Adult Minister in the future as well as upgrade their media technology.
Msgr. Kenneth Rush is pastor of Holy Cross. “When we started this process, I wasn’t sure what to expect since it was so new, but I have to say that I have been amazed by the generosity of our people. In addition to raising funds for our local needs, this campaign has also offered us an unexpected opportunity to bring our parish community closer together. When I sat with people one-on-one and in small groups to talk about the goals of this campaign; I was able to learn more about them which helped me build deeper relationships. This campaign has also brought us closer through the many people who rallied together to make it a success – our parish staff members, the consultant and Diocesan staff who worked with us and the many volunteers who contributed their time and talents. I am so grateful for their support”, said Msgr. Rush.