Dear Brothers and Sisters,
As I announced last weekend, the Archbishop Sartain has asked us to participate in the Called to Serve as Christ campaign. This campaign supports the retired priests of the Archdiocese (present and future) and the aging religious who have labored here in Western Washington for so many years. I am grateful that the Archbishop is also directing a portion of the money collected here at Blessed Sacrament to the elderly and infirm friars of our Western Dominican Province (see below).
As part of the campaign, the Archdiocese is mailing a campaign packet to all the households of the parish. Perhaps you have already received it; if not, you should receive it soon. Inside is a case statement outlining the need: namely, to strengthen the resources that provide for the retired priests of the Archdiocese. In addition, the Archbishop is enclosing a letter requesting a specific amount that your household might pledge to this campaign over the next three (3) years.
The Archbishop asks for a sacrificial gift to this campaign. By naming it a sacrificial gift, the Archbishop is recognizing that your continued generosity remains essential for the ongoing functioning of the parish, the Dominican friars and the Archdiocese. So the Archbishop first invites you to continue to plan for your monthly gift to Blessed Sacrament, your spiritual home. Then your support for our Dominicans brothers in formation through the Rosary Sunday Appeal is requested. After that, he asks your continual support for the ACA. Finally, after your continued generosity to these regular and usual collections, the Archbishop asks your sacrificial gift to this campaign.
This is an ambitious campaign. The overall goal for the Archdiocese is $100 million. Our parish goal is $1.1 million through a good faith effort. As you might imagine with such goals, the Archbishop is requesting amounts from each household that are inviting us to stretch. I deeply trust your prayer and your prudence as you approach this campaign and consider what you might give.
Now we are in a unique situation here at Blessed Sacrament. The Archbishop desired to recognize the 100+ years of service offered by the Dominican friars here in Seattle. Thus, he is generously directing a significant portion of the campaign funds to our aging and infirm Dominican priests, friars like Fr. Gus. In consultation with the Finance Council I am also directing our “parish share” to the same cause. So together, 42.5% of the money collected at our parish will go to the trusts set aside for our elderly friars whose preaching and other activities are limited by age and health. The other 57.5% will be divided among the priests and sisters who have served the Archdiocese as well as campaign costs. There are more details about how we arrived at this breakdown HERE.
You can also find more information about the campaign at its website: www.calledtoserveaschrist.org
My dear friends, this may seem like a bad time to run this campaign. It is! The pain of this moment may leave some of you uncertain that you wish to support the Church in any way. This makes sense to me; I understand!
However, I might suggest this is a wonderful season to show your support for those faithful priests who have served you through the years. None of the money received through this campaign will go to priests guilty of abuse, either Archdiocesan or Dominican.
What a great gift to be able to support the faithful priests, both Dominican and Archdiocesan, who have led generations to Jesus through the Eucharistic sacrifice!
In Christ and St. Dominic,
fr John Marie, op
P.S. More information will be coming through the fall. Today I want to thank you for your prayerful consideration of this Called to Serve as Christ campaign!
As noted above, 42.5% of all Called to Serve campaign funds raised at Blessed Sacrament will benefit the elderly and infirm Dominican friars. You can read more about this breakdown in Fr. John Marie's Pastor's Corner from August 19, 2018.