Answers to Common Campaign Questions:
Many have asked questions about the past “Believe” Campaign (completed) and the current “Believe and Grow Together” Campaign. Listed below are common questions with answers.
1. Why do we need to build a new church? Our current church building is nice.
- The current church is our parish hall and is meant to be a temporary place of worship. When we moved from the Remington site to our current location, we built the parish hall first with the “Believe” Campaign. The current “Believe and Grow Together” Campaign is to raise money for the permanent church.
- The parish hall lacks the elements of a consecrated Catholic church such as a narthex (lobby), confessionals, and baptismal font. The parish is expected to grow and the Diocesan plan for St. Thomas More is to have adequate capacity.
2. How much will it cost to build the church?
- The estimated amount needed is $15,400,000.
3. When will the church be built? I thought we met the goal. Is this a new campaign?
- We anticipate the church being built in 2023/24. It depends on the speed of the fundraising. We do not have enough money at this time.
- The “Believe and Grow Together” Campaign began with an understanding that if we raised 50% of the total in cash and pledges, we could take a loan for the remaining amount, continue the campaign, and begin construction. The Diocese changed their policy and they now require the entire construction amount be accounted for with a minimum of 75% in cash and 25% in pledges. Assessment of our loan capacity will occur as we approach these goals.
- $11.6M (75%) is the current cash amount needed with the remaining $3.8M (25%) needed in pledges.
- The current efforts are for the “Believe and Grow Together” Campaign which began in 2017. An average pledge duration of 3 years ends in January 2021.
4. I have a current pledge. Why should I increase my pledge?
- We didn’t raise enough money in the first round of pledges. New parishioners will add new pledges, but we need existing pledges to increase as well. It’s an honorable task to raise a new Catholic church. We will pray for the Holy Spirit to multiply our efforts.
5. What if we do not raise enough money?
- Eventually we will raise enough money, but the longer it takes, the more it will cost. A study of our parish demographics revealed we have the financial capacity needed. We plan to increase parish motivation with inspirational messages and prayer.
6. Who is in charge of and who oversees the campaign? Why was there a time delay in campaign efforts and updates?
- John Janze, as our Pastor, is in charge of the campaign. A committee of parishioners oversees the activities and implements the campaign master plan. A fundraising consultant, Steier Group, was hired in 2017 to kick off the current “Believe and Grow Together” Campaign. Their contract has ended and it was for approximately one year.
- In 2018, the Steier Group’s contract ended and the committee leadership changed. The master plan was updated since the money needed wasn’t raised. During this time, there was limited campaign messaging to the parish, but work continued. Once the master plan was ready, the committee re-started the public campaign efforts in the spring of 2019.
7. Will the Diocese of Orange contribute money? Does my annual PSA pledge go towards the new church?
- The Diocese does not contribute money, but they do support the campaign with direction from their professional staff. Their requirements set the campaign boundaries and they ultimately approve construction.
- The annual PSA (Pastoral Services Appeal) amount for each parish is set by the Diocese. In 2019, we met our parish goal and approximately $33K came back to our parish. Fr. John has designated that all this refund go to the campaign.
8. How can I get involved?
- Pray! We need your inspirational prayers, especially as we approach the October 2019 pledge weekend.
- Volunteer your time and talents to help grow the campaign. The campaign committee has both simple and larger ways to help. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the office.
- Register with the parish if you have not done so.
- Extend your existing pledge or make a new pledge in October 2019.
9. What is the seating capacity of the new church? What else will change on the current parish campus?
- The current church has a seating capacity of 780 and the permanent church will have seating for 1200.
- The existing crucifix on the wall behind the altar and the tabernacle in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel will be relocated to the permanent church.
- The current church will become our parish hall, which is its original intent. We will have increased indoor space for large events, as well much needed additional classroom and meeting space.
- The permanent church will include all the elements of a traditional Catholic church such as a narthex (lobby), a permanent baptismal font, statues for devotion, and designated choir space.
- There are no planned changes to the parking lot at this time.
- The parish master plan includes a Life Center building and a bell tower. These elements are not included in this campaign.
10. Can the pledge I make be redirected to any other parish or Diocesan purpose?
- No. The pledges designated for the Believe and Grow Together Campaign are tracked in a separate account and designated solely for the purpose of building our permanent church.