Parish Priorities ~ $80 Million
For more than 275 years since eleven people gathered for the first Mass in the tiny chapel of St. Joseph in 1732, the heartbeat of our Church can be found in our parishes. Through liturgical seasons, marked by the cycle of Advent, Christmas, Lent and Easter, as well as the seasons of our lives, marked by Baptisms, First Communions, marriages and funerals, the parish is the center of our sacramental life as Catholics. Here, communities gather to worship, celebrate and mourn as they have for generations. Here too, individuals find nourishment, reconciliation, solace and fellowship. The parish, after the family, is the single most important unit of the Church.
Because a vibrant parish life is central to fulfilling the mission of the Church of Philadelphia, the largest portion of Heritage of Faith ~ Vision of Hope money—$80 million or 40% of the total goal—will be allocated directly for parish needs.
Local Parishes ~ $70 million
Each parish, even the most well-maintained, has needs. Some require repairs or renovations to make their facilities more conducive to worship, to provide easier access for the elderly and disabled, or to create the capacity to institute new outreach ministries. Others are eager to improve religious education, update technology, or hire needed staff. Too often, parishes lack the funds to implement important initiatives like these.
Because the Archdiocese is committed to the economic stability and vitality of its parishes, thirty-five cents ($0.35) of every dollar raised in a particular parish for Heritage of Faith ~ Vision of Hope will be returned to that parish. Recognizing, too, that each parish is in the best position to determine its most urgent priorities, the use of funds will be decided locally, with the participation of parishioners in partnership with a Priests’ Advisory Committee.
Needy Parishes ~ $10 million
In the late 1960s, more affluent parishes began to assist parishes that, for a variety of reasons, were struggling to meet the needs of their parishioners. Over time, this assistance was formalized as the Inter-Parochial Cooperation Commission, better known as IPCC. For more than 40 years now, IPCC has continued this proud tradition of assisting struggling, yet viable parishes throughout the Archdiocese.
Presently, the IPCC provides annual subsidies that are essential to the viability of 30 parishes. An infusion of $10 million to the current IPCC endowment, which was established during Catholic Life 2000, is expected to generate an additional $500,000 each year and will continue this legacy whereby the generosity of the Archdiocese is shared in order to build and sustain vibrant Catholic parishes in every neighborhood.