According to a recent article in The Catholic Spirit, the newspaper of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, the ‘independent’ Catholic Services Appeal Foundation has reached 85% of its yearly goal of $9.3 million. However, the article continues, the money raised has come from even fewer donors than in previous years. Specifically, nearly 7000 former donors did not give to the Appeal this year.
The number of donors has been dropping steadily during the past eight years, beginning with Archbishop Nienstedt’s appointment, continuing through the ill-fated campaign for a constitutional amendment prohibiting same-sex marriage, and then plummeting once the scandal broke in 2013. Still, it is interesting to me that there would be such a significant drop even after the Archdiocese had reassured the faithful (repeatedly) that the healing could begin.
Then again, having been fortunate enough to get a glimpse of a recent mailing to former donors, I can understand why the numbers continue to drop. In an attempt to lure them back (meaning securing more contributions), former donors have received invitations to a BBQ (see below). However, it is not these former donors who are the special guests of the evening (as would be appropriate in terms of protocol) or the worthy recipients of the CSA funds (i.e. the poor, a la Pope Francis). No, the special guests in the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis remain who they have always been- the bishops. I wonder if Archbishop Nienstedt also plans on putting in an appearance?
Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.