The Annual Appeal of the Archdiocese of Washington has been for 50 years a blessed expression of our faith, our hope and our mission. It reminds us that when humanity’s need for mercy was great, Jesus was there with an enduring love and that he asks us now to also give of ourselves for others.
In establishing this unified appeal to all the faithful in 1969, Cardinal Patrick O’Boyle said that “it enables us to imitate in some small measure the sacrifice our Savior made.” That first campaign, men and women throughout the region contributed over $527,000 to support the charitable work of the archdiocese. The goal for this year is $14.3 million and your kind contributions will provide the largest source of support for the archdiocese’s programs that benefit many.
Together, with your generosity, we can bring about renewal in our community and in our Church. We can be a positive force for change. Every dollar you give is applied exclusively to the ministries and programs that are part of the Appeal and not to administrative or legal expenses.
“Let each of us make his sacrifice in the spirit of Christ.”
~ Cardinal Patrick O' Boyle
Your Gifts at Work
Jesus says to us in the Gospel, “Give, and gifts will be given to you” (Luke 6:38). Here are just some of the programs and ministries that your own commitment to Faith, Hope and Mission in this 50th Archdiocesan Annual Appeal will provide for:
Formation of seminarians, deacons, and religious; continuing education; care of elderly and ailing retired priests; and support for the Office of Vocations, Office of the Diaconate and Office of Consecrated Life.
Tuition assistance for Catholic schools; parish religious education programs; educator and catechist development; school safety; enrollment management and technology; and university campus ministries.
Outreach to spread the Good News of Christ’s love and truth; support for ministries to foster and promote marriage and family, cultural diversity, youth and young adult engagement, and special needs; outreach and assistance to uphold the dignity of all human life, including the annual Youth Rally and Mass for Life; support for ministries to the hospitalized and imprisoned; support for special Masses, events and communications outreach; and support for Catholic Charities, which serves more than 140,000 women, men and children annually.
Vocations and Clergy
Saint John Paul II Seminary is a home where young men who are the future can open their hearts to Christ in an environment marked by prayer, study, fraternal community and heartfelt devotion to Mary.
Your Appeal donation ensures that these college seminarians have the time, resources and guidance they need to hear the Lord’s call, begin their human and spiritual formation to be what it takes to be a shepherd of souls, and make a lifetime commitment to the holy priesthood. The Seminary “was a great fit for me. The spiritual life in the seminary is amazing,” said Father Benjamin Garcia of his experience there as part of the pioneer class.
The Office of Consecrated Life serves the sisters, brothers and priests in religious orders who throughout history have been a rich blessing for our Church and community, particularly in the areas of education and health care. Your kind gift helps to promote and support vocations to the religious life, where each sister or brother in their own way, generously giving of themselves, contributes to the revitalization of the world.
Education and Leadership Formation
The Office of Catechesis oversees and assists religious education programs for young people in parish and Catholic schools, sacramental preparation, adult faith formation, and the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA). With support from the Appeal, the Office is better able to provide training, catechetical guidelines, teaching aids and other resources so that catechists can share the faith in the fullest and most productive way.
Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Washington are centers of academic excellence and alive with Gospel values, cultivating students’ minds, opening their hearts and nurturing their spiritual development. They have educated leaders for our Church, communities and nation for generations. Yet today, without tuition assistance, many families would not be able to afford to give their children this blessed opportunity. Your generous Appeal donation helps more young people to receive a Catholic education rooted in our faith and moral values, which prepares them to build a thriving future for themselves and the community.
Campus ministries at local universities, like the Catholic Student Center at the University of Maryland, provide for the sacramental and pastoral needs of students, inviting them to grow in relationship with God, deepen their faith, share meals and other fellowship, and become future leaders in the community and in the Church. “We’re building a Catholic culture here,” says one young participant, “and living out the Gospel.” Your gift helps ensure that this fruitful encounter with the Lord continues.
Special Ministries, Catholic Charities
The Youth Rally and Mass for Life draws nearly 20,000 young people annually to stand up for the gift of all human life and to pray for a culture of life in our society. Sanctuaries for Life provides women facing an unintended pregnancy with material help and a caring support structure to make life-affirming decisions. Project Rachel provides loving support and a healing ministry to women and men dealing with the impact of abortion. Your gift to the Appeal supports these and other valuable programs that promote a greater respect for human life.
The Office of Cultural Diversity and Outreach provides resources and support that promotes appreciation for the richness of diverse heritages in the archdiocese and works for their integration within the life of both the Catholic community and the greater society. Your Appeal donation helps sponsor ethnic festivals, intercultural conferences, special liturgies and public devotions such as the annual Walk with Mary celebration.
The Department of Special Needs Ministry supported White Mass celebrates the beauty and dignity of each person in their physical, developmental, cognitive and mental diversity of unique abilities and disabilities. Gifts to the Appeal support this joyous liturgy and other initiatives that summon people to build up a welcoming culture of inclusion that values real participation of all in the community.
Catholic Charities is the Church’s extension of the charity of Christ, dedicated to caring especially for the poor and marginalized. Last year, Catholic Charities provided 5 million meals and more 1 million pounds of food to local pantries to feed the hungry, 1,500 beds each night to shelter the homeless and medical services to thousands more, as well as legal services support for more than 7,000 cases, and training for the unemployed and persons with developmental disabilities. Your commitment to the Appeal provides the blessings of hope, consolation and strength for recipients to persevere in difficult times.
“It is more blessed to give than to receive.”
~ Acts 20:35