Capital campaign continues toward goal

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Barb Reiland, capital campaign co-chair at St. Andrew Parish in Blue Grass, invites parishioners to donate to the Upon This Rock diocesan capital campaign during Masses April 22-23.

By Anne Marie Amacher
The Catholic Messenger

The final “wave” of parishes in the Diocese of Davenport’s “Upon This Rock” capital campaign has begun. The threefold purpose of the campaign is to support priests in their retirement, to educate seminarians and to benefit parishes throughout the diocese.

Diocesan CFO Tom Tallman said Catholics in the diocese have gifted or pledged nearly $20.9 million as of mid-April, which is 75% toward the $28 million goal. “Of that, $7.6 million has been paid or 36%.”

“I am excited as Wave 3 begins,” he said. “Parishes in the pilot Wave and Wave 2 were exceptional in their response. We believe Wave 3 will follow and help us make our goal.”

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Meanwhile, disbursements have begun for the parish share of the campaign. “So far, parishes have received just over $242,000 for their projects,” Tallman said.

“We have been greatly blessed with wonderful priests who have dedicated their lives to care for our spiritual needs. Now they need us to share our blessings to support them,” said Deacon Steve Barton, parish life coordinator for St. Andrew Parish-Blue Grass.

The priests are “retiring in growing numbers and need basic living expenses and health care, like many of us who are retired and those who will retire in the future. Our seminarians also need our support for their education so that we can continue to have wonderful priests to shepherd us now and in future generations.”

Deacon Barton and his volunteer crew of 16 are ready to make personal visits for the campaign’s final wave. Last weekend (April 22-23), Deacon Barton spoke to parishioners about their importance in the diocese and to the campaign. The campaign video was part of the kickoff. Letters have been sent to parishioners and the volunteer team will follow up with them, he said. Co-chairs Barb Reiland and Deb Ehrecke planned and organized the parish campaign. Prior to the kickoff, Deacon Barton used the parish bulletin and mailings to inform parishioners about the capital campaign’s importance.

Disbursements from St. Andrew Parish’s share of campaign donations will go toward new flooring in the parish center. “The concrete floor in the St. Andrew parish center is original to the structure, which was built about 45 years ago,” Deacon Barton said. “It has held up structurally but it suffers from stains and pit marks. New flooring would be a significant upgrade for the hall. Plans are to install a highly durable, decorative concrete floor coating in a color scheme that will complement the colors in the freshly painted parish center. The new floor will be an attractive, long-lasting and beneficial asset to the parish.”

Father Nick Adam, pastor of St. Mary Parish-Fairfield, said the capital campaign “acknowledges our past Church leaders as well as looking to our future.” In preparation for the parish’s kickoff in the campaign’s third wave, parish staff recruited a volunteer team of 12. The team will reach out with personal visits, phone calls and email and will be present during Mass to ensure parishioners are informed about the campaign’s importance.

For several months leading up to the capital campaign, Father Adam has mentioned it at Mass, talked with the members of the  parish council and finance council about it, placed announcements in the bulletin and had personal conversations with some parishioners.

Roof repairs are a priority for the parish portion of the campaign, Father Adam said. If there are any extra funds after that, more parish improvement projects will be addressed.

“Our bottom-line message is a simple one: Pray about what you can do. If you decide that you can give, we’re grateful. If you can’t, we understand,” Tallman said.

For information about the campaign, contact your parish campaign team or Tom Tallman at (563) 888-4365 or tallman@davenportdiocese.org


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