Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
In his letter to the Galatians, St. Paul urges us to remain steadfast in helping others: “Let us not grow tired of doing good, for in due time we shall reap our harvest, if we do not give up” (Gal 6:9). During these unprecedented times, many are hurting and need our assistance, including elderly religious. As we approach the annual Retirement Fund for Religious collection on Dec. 12 and 13, I encourage your continued support.
During their days of active ministry, they worked tirelessly to build and staff Catholic schools and hospitals, promote social justice, and embrace the neediest among us. In retirement, many continue in volunteer ministry, and they all pray for the needs of our church and world. Inspired by love, their service — past and present — is marked by joy and a deep desire to do the will of God.
Today, hundreds of religious communities do not have enough retirement savings and struggle to provide for a growing number of older members. COVID-19 has only increased the challenge to provide adequate care.
Your gift to the Retirement Fund for Religious provides vital funding for medications, nursing care, and more. It also helps religious congregations plan for future retirement needs, even as they continue to serve the People of God. If you are unable to give during Mass, please mail your offertory envelope to your parish and be sure it is marked Retirement Fund for Religious.
In these difficult days, you may feel as though your generosity has been exhausted. I ask just two things. First, please join me in praying for God’s protection for all our elderly religious. Second, please support the Retirement Fund for Religious collection as you are able and know that women and men religious across the country hold you and your loved ones in grateful prayer.
Sincerely in Christ,
Bishop Thomas Zinkula
Bishop of Davenport