The Stewardship Commission is concerned with the promotion of Christian stewardship as a way of life, and how living out our call to discipleship in service to the Church and her members provides a living example by which the spirit of evangelization is witnessed. (See, Stewardship: A Disciple’s Response. U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops 1992)
The Commission’s education responsibilities are to:
Foster a parish environment in which Christian stewardship as a way of life is understood, accepted and practiced.
Develop programs that allow parishioners to discern their God-given skills and talents and how they may be put to use in the ministries of the Church.
Develop family finance study programs based on Scripture and The Catechism of the Catholic Church.
Encourage parishioners’ endowment gifts through distribution of planned giving newsletters, wills awareness seminars and other materials.
The Commission’s stewardship responsibilities are to:
Coordinate the process for encouraging parishioners to share their time, talents and treasure in parish ministries, activities and support.
Plan, recommend, and with Parish Pastoral Council and Parish Finance Council approval, implement actions for the most effective use of parish resources; these resources include parishioners’ time, skills and talents, and offered funds.
The Commission’s administrative responsibilities are to:
Coordinate the annual parish Catholic Services Appeal (CSA) campaign following guidelines in the Archdiocese of Detroit manual, Catholic Services Appeal: Planning for Success.
Coordinate all parish fundraising programs and activities in accordance with Pastoral Council and Finance Council approval and in line with overall parish priorities and objectives.
The Stewardship Commission should consist of six to ten parishioners and will include members of the pastoral staff as resources.
Catholic Services Appeal
The Catholic Services Appeal is an annual assessment on parishes in the archdiocese designed to raise funds to operate archdiocesan programs. Unlike the Changing Lives Together campaign, which is raising funds for capital resources and improvements in parishes and in the archdiocese, the CSA creates operational funds for archdiocesan projects.
CSA funds are used to finance:
Catholic education in the archdiocese. Gifts to the Catholic Services Appeal allow the archdiocesan Office for Catholic Schools to help Catholic schools provide students with academic training while continuing the teaching mission of Jesus Christ. The office, which is part of the Department of Evangelization, Catechesis and Schools, provides resources for teachers and principals, parents and students, and alumni.
- Pro-life activities. Gifts to the Catholic Services Appeal help fund many pro-life initiatives, including Project Rachel, a post-abortion healing ministry, and the annual Life Is A Gift Conference, an annual opportunity to discuss current pro-life issues.
Vocation awareness. CSA funds allow the archdiocesan Office of Priestly Vocations to help guide men discerning a call to the diocesan priesthood through discernment weekends at Sacred Heart Major Seminary. These firsthand, up close and stress-free looks at seminary life are offered for men of all ages.
- Missionary activity. A number of national collections are included in the Catholic Services Appeal each year, such as the Black and Indian Missions Collection. Since 1884, the Black and Indian Missions Collection has provided grants to dioceses to support and strengthen evangelization programs among predominantly African American, American Indian, Eskimo and Aleut communities of faith in the United States. Other national collections benefiting from gifts to the Catholic Services Appeal include those for the Catholic University of America, the Church in Latin America, Catholic Home Missions, the Holy Land and the Catholic Communication Campaign.
Archdiocesan Programs. CSA funds support valuable ministries, programs and services coordinated by the archdiocesan departments of Parish Life and Services; Communications; Evangelization, Catechesis and Schools; and Development and Stewardship. The Office of Priestly Vocations, the Metropolitan Tribunal, and Sacred Heart Major Seminary benefit from gifts to the Catholic Services Appeal as well.
Changing Lives Together
Changing Lives Together is a $135 million campaign designed to strengthen Catholic parishes in southeast Michigan, enhance Catholic school tuition assistance, increase support for priestly formation and lay leadership development, and preserve Church ministries in Detroit. Through Changing Lives Together, every parish in the Archdiocese of Detroit:
Establishes a financial goal.
Determines its own capital improvement needs and priorities.
Develops a plan to achieve its goal.
To raise the funds needed for the capital campaign, each parish in the archdiocese seeks parishioner pledges that can be fulfilled over a three-year period. Seventy cents of each dollar remains with the local parish to accomplish its goals. The remaining 30 cents goes to the archdiocese to help achieve the objectives listed above.
Many parishioners have participated in our Changing Lives Together Campaign as we continue to receive pledges and contributions to help fulfill our parish goals. One of the first capital improvements funded by the campaign was the repair of our church air conditioning unit which was greatly welcomed during last year’s very hot summer.
Future projects will be determined and funded as the campaign progresses.