Anonymous Pledge boosts initiative
The Archdiocese of Boston has announced a second phase for 90-Days Now, For Your Parish, a first of its kind initiative started by a member of the laity and now boosted by a $100,000 matching pledge from an anonymous donor. 90-Days Now is an online supplemental offertory giving program that is helping parishes respond to the immediate needs resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. The initiative offers a simple on-line giving tool for parishioners or members of the community to support their parish, or a parish of their choice.
During the first phase of 90 Days Now, the Archdiocese reports that more than $450,000 in gifts and pledges has been raised from 1,500 donors benefitting 236 parishes which have experienced reduced offertory due to the pandemic. Funds raised go directly to the parish.
This new phase has a goal of reaching $1 million with the generous assistance of a matching pledge from an anonymous donor. The plan is to raise an additional $450,000 for a total of $900,000. For every $2 raised above the $700,000 level, the donor will match it with a $1 contribution, up to $100,000, bringing the overall total raised to $1 million.
John E. Corcoran, a local businessman, active lay leader in the Church and parishioner of Saint Paul Parish in Hamilton who developed the concept of the initiative, said, “We believe we can achieve something even more impactful for our parishes during these challenging days. Basic monthly financial obligations still need to be met at a time most parishes have experienced a significant reduction in offertory. While we are thrilled that Churches are now re-opening, the process will be slow and steady in the weeks and months ahead. Parish needs will only increase, which ultimately impacts programs and basic support for parish life. With the launch of this new phase, we can do our part to continue to support our parishes at a critical time.”
“We have been inspired by the tremendous dedication and commitment of our priests, parish staffs, deacons, religious and laity to meeting the pastoral needs of our parishes. Today, more than ever, we need everyone’s help as we face the immediate and long-term needs of parish life,” said Cardinal Seán P. O’Malley, OFM Cap.
“This initiative benefits even those parishes that are building their own an online giving program and should be thought of as supplemental vehicle for support by the parishes,” said Patricia Kelleher Bartram, Archdiocesan Interim Secretary for Institutional Advancement. She encouraged parishes to think of the 90 Days Now opportunity “not as an either/or giving vehicle, but as a really easy way for people to make an online contribution now, for as little as $1/day over the next 90 days.” She noted that “we will only be successful if our parishes promote this giving opportunity within their parish communities – loudly and often.”
90-Days Now Endorsements
The 90 Days Now program has received much positive feedback from pastors, parish business managers and parishioners, reporting it to be a very easy and convenient way to give. Some comments include:
Fr. Scott Euvrard, Pastor, St. Mary of the Assumption Parish in Hull and St. Anthony Parish in Cohasset: “I am grateful to the laypeople of the Archdiocese of Boston who created this initiative. The program, whose message is clear and compelling, provides a user-friendly way for parishioners to provide extra financial support for their parish during this pandemic. Both current and new donors are using it. Their support is helping St. Mary of the Assumption Parish in Hull and St. Anthony Parish in Cohasset to "bridge the gap" during this time of reduced offertory.”
Fr. William Kelly, Pastor of St. Paul Parish, Cambridge: “The 90-Days Now initiative has been embraced by our parishioners with great energy. It has been an inspiring moment where the need is great, but the spirit is greater. We are able to raise much needed emergency resources to literally keep the lights on and our people fed pastorally.”
Greg and Colleen Tocci, Saint Mary Parish, Holliston: “We are all struggling through these times and our parishes are struggling as well. They sustain us sacramentally and they strengthen our communities. And now they need our help. We gladly gave to 90 Days Now in order to support our parishes. Together we can make a difference.”
Jack Riley, St. Agatha, Milton: “Just as households are having a difficult time making ends meet, parishes are having the same problem. And if we are going to do God’s work, it is only going to be through the generosity of the people who are in our parish community.”