Support for Catholic Charity Appeal pacing ahead of last year's campaign


PROVIDENCE — Six weeks into its 2024 campaign, the 99th annual diocesan Catholic Charity Appeal has met 34 percent of its goal, with nearly $2.4 million in gifts pledged.
A letter from Bishop Richard G. Henning to the faithful on January 8 kicked off the Appeal, which provides crucial funding needed to support many diocesan outreach ministries.
The bishop said he chose this year’s theme, “A State of Hope,” because it exemplifies how Jesus calls us in so many ways to a new sense of communion and solidarity.
“As men and women of faith, we are called to share Christ’s charitable gift to us. The Catholic Charity Appeal is an opportunity to do that,” Bishop Henning said in a letter to the faithful asking for their support of the diocesan effort.
As of Feb. 16, the Office of Stewardship and Development reported that $2,358,069 in pledges have been made by a total so far of 5,970 donors.
“Compared to the 2023 Appeal, we are pacing ahead by 204 more donors and have raised $101,000 more than the 2023 totals as of Feb. 16,” said Timothy McCaig, director of the Office of Stewardship and Development.
McCaig noted that in-pew presentations at Masses by pastors and laypeople have begun and will continue into spring.
On Feb. 13, the second official Appeal letter was mailed, this time from pastors to their parishioners.
McCaig said that videos are available for viewing on the Appeal page of the Diocese of Providence website which highlights diocesan ministries that benefit from donations.
This year, the diocese is also promoting the Appeal through radio and television ads, with the first TV ad beginning on Feb. 5. It will run through the end of March.
The radio ads highlight the diocesan healthcare ministry and the St. Martin de Porres Multiservice Center for seniors. Another ad features a message from Bishop Henning.
McCaig said that 11 parishes have already surpassed 50 percent of their established goals for the campaign.
“I’m very encouraged by the response from the campaign kickoff letter, which was a direct request for support from the bishop,” he said.
And as was the case last year, many donors have increased their gifts again this year.
The annual Appeal provides funding to about three dozen diocesan programs and agencies, such as Life and Family Ministry, St. Gabriel’s Call for Mothers in Need, the Emmanuel House Homeless Shelter, the St. John Bosco Chapel at Camp Yawgoog Scout Reservation, Diaconate Formation, the Seminary of Our Lady of Providence and the Catholic Schools Office, which last year received $270,000 to provide tuition assistance to families with demonstrated need across Rhode Island.
The effort also supported 18 seminarians studying for the priesthood and helped the Life and Family Ministry Office to assist 1,700 people in need. It also provided for 15,000 meals to be served last year to seniors at the St. Martin de Porres Multiservice Center.
“Similar to last year, we’re seeing about 35 percent of people increase their donation, which has positioned us to track ahead of last year,” he said. “We’re very grateful to those that have donated so far. My hope is that our outreach on social media, radio and television will be fruitful when it comes to adding new donors to the Appeal in 2024.”
The Office of Stewardship and Development has established the following online link for donors to contribute to the 2024 Catholic Charity Appeal: