Catholic Services Appeal tops $3 million mark

CSABy Jessica Able, Record Staff Writer

For the first time since 2007, the Catholic Services Appeal (CSA) has reached the $3 million mark in its campaign.

As of Jan. 29, gifts and pledges totaling $3,061,000 have already been raised  — which represents 99% of the $3.1 million goal.

The annual appeal, which raises money for more than 100 different ministries and programs in the Archdiocese of Louisville, began this year’s fundraising efforts last September.

The fact the campaign has already hit the $3 million mark is also significant because the campaign has fallen short of its goal in recent years, Matthew Schuhmann, coordinator of the annual fundraiser, said in an interview at the Chancery last week.

This year “we raised more by the first week in January than we did by June 30 of last year,” Schuhmann said, noting that last year’s campaign came within $30,000 of its $3 million goal.

Schuhmann said the uptick in donations and pledges is a clear sign that parishioners recognize the good work accomplished by the CSA.

“Their generosity allows us to do more and more as the needs grow,” he said.

This year’s CSA included an extra option for donors — the opportunity to make a restricted gift to the retired priests’ fund, Schuhmann said.

“It allows us to take care of our retired priests who have served us for decades,” he said.

Schuhmann also noted that two out of three parishes  are ahead of their totals compared to this time last year. He said it’s not a case of one parish “picking up the slack, so to speak,” it’s a matter of all parishes working together.

Holy Trinity Church in St. Matthews is the first parish in the archdiocese to reach the $200,000 mark in pledges since the year 2000.

Schuhmann said pastors and parish leadership teams who promote the CSA deserve a great deal of the credit.

“They make it possible,” he said.

While the campaign is near its goal, it’s not quite there yet, Schuhmann added. There’s still time to turn in pledge and donation forms. Visit www.archlou.org/csadonate/ for more information and follow the CSA on Twitter @ArchLouCSA.

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