‘Tis the Season!

FFHL Logo December 9, 2013
‘Tis the Season! For many of us, December is our busiest month and a challenging time to make campaign visits. There is so much else to do – shop for gifts, decorate the house, send Christmas cards and attend holiday gatherings and shows for the kids and grandkids.But there is also a tremendous opportunity to connect with fellow parishioners who are looking to help the Church while at the same time reducing their tax burden for the year. That is why it is critical to maintain momentum and make time for the campaign.

If you have pending gift requests, consider helping prospective donors reach their decisions. Check in to see if they have any questions, and what their schedule looks like. Sometimes a simple follow up can make the difference.

Charitable contributions are deductible in the year they are made, so you can also suggest initial payments at the time these gifts are made. That means credit card charges made before the end of the year are deductible even if the bill is not paid until January. The same applies for checks written and mailed by December 31 and received by January 7, 2014.

Even if you are only able to devote a few hours a week to the campaign during Advent, your parish – and fellow parishioners – will enjoy many happy returns.

Campaign Statistics
This week the campaign garnered additional support from 392 families. When asked why he thought parishioners at Our Lady of the Highways in Thomasville responded to the campaign, Fr. Jim Turner remarked, “The parishioners respond so generously because of the wide variety of the campaign elements. Many people appreciated the needs express in the film. I feel it opened the eyes of the parishioners to how they can help the parish and the diocese as we move forward.”
* Retired, but pastor when campaign was conducted.268.png
Good News
Block OneOur Lady of the Highways in Thomasville received an additional $62,440 in commitments from the second in-pew appeal, bringing the campaign total to $507,510. This is nearly double the parish’s goal. Fr. Jim Turner has been enthused with the continued support that his parishioners have shown to their church and the Diocese throughout this campaign.Fr. Bob Ferris at St. Aloysius in Hickory will host a special campaign kick-off event to begin sharing the effort with the entire congregation. More than 300 families are invited to learn about the pillars of Forward in Faith, Hope, and Love. Following this reception, Fr. Bob will also share the campaign details at each Mass.

At St. Benedict in Greensboro, Fr. Duc Duong hosted the parish’s first Commitment Weekend. Nineteen families pledged an additional $58,120. St. Benedict parish will conclude the campaign next weekend with their second in-pew appeal.

Fr. Frank O’Rourke at St. Gabriel in Charlotte garnered significant gifts totaling more than $284,000. The parish is on its way to reaching its first campaign benchmark of 25% of goal.

Fr. Adrian Porras and his team of Ambassadors celebrated a successful campaign announcement during Mass. The announcement has given St. Barnabas’s campaign in Arden great momentum moving into the holidays. Following the announcement, the parish welcomed over $180,000 in gifts, including its first commitment of $100,000.

Our Lady of the Rosary in Lexington received 21 additional gifts to the campaign this week, nearly doubling their previous gift total. Fr. Al Gondek is looking forward to using the funds his parish receives to improve the air conditioning and upgrade the sound system in the church.

Fr. Philip Kollithanath at St. Joseph in Asheboro, with the help of his Ambassadors, brought the campaign total up to $414,300, which is 78% of the parish goal. Each week, Fr. Philip and his dedicated Ambassadors invite the participation of more families in the Forward in Faith, Hope, and Love endeavor.

Fr. Paul Dechant asked every parishioner at Holy Cross in Kernersville to make a decision regarding their participation in the campaign at Masses this weekend. An additional $150,145 in pledges was raised from this in-pew appeal. Holy Cross has surpassed its goal by $125,016, so the parish will now receive 50% from every additional commitment. Holy Cross is blessed with 310 families participating in this historic effort.

Our Lady of Lourdes in Monroe held the first Commitment Weekend; an additional 187 gifts were received, doubling the campaign total! Fr. Benjamin Roberts provided an opportunity to educate any family who had not yet heard about this exciting endeavor, particularly those who attended the Spanish Masses. More than $300,000 was raised from two Spanish Masses, bringing the total raised to $783,820. The parish community looks forward to receiving 50% of all future commitments.

Fr. Ken Whittington celebrated St. Charles Borromeo’s (Morganton) participation in Forward in Faith, Hope, and Love during a parish reception. Parish families joined together to hear Fr. Ken detail the areas that will be supported and enhanced through the effort; families were particularly impressed that St. Charles Borromeo has reached 43% of their $645,000 goal from less than ten percent of parish families.

The Leadership Team at St. Matthew in Charlotte continues to educate and invite the parish community to participate in this effort. At a recent event, an Ambassador encouraged other families to participate in this endeavor, “Your participation will help us to maintain and strengthen our Catholic traditions as we embark on this journey to strengthen our parish life and the broader ministries of our Church.”

Over the past several weeks, Fr. Fred Werth has been educating the St. Andrew the Apostle (Mars Hill) and Sacred Heart (Burnsville) parishioners about the good works of Forward in Faith, Hope, and Love. Parishioners are both parish and mission were motivated by this unique opportunity to impact the greater Church and look forward to using their local share for a building fund that will create a new rectory and convert the old rectory into additional space for ministries and Faith Formation.

Forward in Faith, Hope, and Love
1123 South Church StreetCharlotte, NC 28203704-370-6299 ext. 2200