$150 million for parishes
Ensuring parishes in the Archdiocese of Chicago are strong and vibrant communities of faith was the primary mission of To Teach Who Christ Is.
Every parish in the Archdioceses participated in the campaign, and was assigned a fair share campaign target. Parishes retained 60 percent of all funds they raised for local needs, and shared the remaining 40 percent with other parishes and ministries for the benefit of Catholics throughout the archdiocese. Parishes that exceeded their goals will receive 100 percent of funds collected above their target.
Parishes will use the funds they raised for the needs identified in their personalized campaign brochures, and are receiving these funds as pledges are fulfilled. Needs already met with campaign gifts include building expansions, facility repairs, debt reduction, new parish endowments and expanded ministries.
$150 million for scholarships
Catholic education has long been a priority in the Archdiocese of Chicago, where 217 Catholic schools prepare more than 77,000 students for college and future careers, as well as enable them to know, love and serve Christ.
Strengthening Catholic education was a key element of To Teach Who Christ Is, with up to $150 million in campaign funds directed to the Catholic Education Scholarship Trust. Scholarships from this endowed fund will be awarded as Phoenix Scholarships. The Phoenix Scholarships will ensure access to Catholic education for families throughout Cook and Lake counties.
Initially, the trust board has elected to prioritize scholarships for families and schools with the greatest need. As the trust endowment grows, the trust board expects that the program will expand to serve as many students as possible while protecting the long-term viability of the endowment.
$30 million for critical facility issues
More than 2,800 individual structures — sacred spaces as well as parish activity buildings, convents, rectories and schools — in Cook and Lake counties are dedicated to the local Church. Many buildings have needs and issues beyond what parishes in distressed communities can address given their financial circumstances.
$10 million for catechist training
Religious education is a ministry for which we are all responsible. More than 90,000 elementary and secondary school children are enrolled in religious education programs in parishes throughout Cook and Lake counties. In addition, parishes provide religious education to teens through youth ministry as well as to adults, including those seeking to enrich their journey with Christ or join our faith through the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults.
The Archdiocese requires religious education directors and coordinators, as well as youth ministers, to be certified. To Teach Who Christ Is funds are being directed to formation programs leading to archdiocesan certification of these catechetical leaders.
$2 million for innovation in religious education
Religious education — teaching who Christ is — is an integral part of our Church’s mission. Those involved with ministry in the Church today are keenly aware of the need to effectively engage children, youth, young adults and adults in the Catholic faith.
To Teach Who Christ Is funds are being used to develop new parish-based programs and pilot approaches to religious education and faith formation to effectively engage children, youth, young adults and adults in the Catholic faith.
$8 million for academic excellence
To Teach Who Christ Is funds are helping to enhance the academic excellence of our Catholic schools through technology grants, professional and leadership development, and school reform efforts.
To Teach Who Christ Is funds are already being used for new regional director positions, and to implement a diverse curriculum at Catholic schools.