Catholic parishioners in the Archdiocese of Detroit have pledged more than $107 million toward the Changing Lives Together capital initiative. Archbishop Allen Vigneron gave the encouraging update following a vespers service at St. Michael Parish in Livonia Wednesday night. More than 71,500 Catholic households have made pledges to Changing Lives Together since the first group of parishes – including St. Michael – began the campaign in 2010.
“I am profoundly grateful to God for how powerfully he has worked through you and the thousands of people you represent,” Archbishop Vigneron told those in attendance. “It is only possible for us, together, to meet the challenges that we – the Catholic faithful in southeast Michigan – face.”
Changing Lives Together was launched with a stated goal of $135 million. By the end of the year, all parishes within the Archdiocese of Detroit will have started the campaign, which is conducted in numerous “waves.” Through Changing Lives Together, each parish keeps 70 percent of the proceeds raised up to its established goal – and 100 percent of the proceeds after that goal is reached. The remaining 30 percent, in addition to covering administrative costs of the campaign, funds three causes identified by the archbishop: 1) helping Catholic families with tuition assistance for Catholic schools, 2) training priests and lay ministers, and 3) strengthening the Church’s presence in the City of Detroit.
Parishes have used the funds raised for everything from building maintenance, to funding charities, to paying off debt, and even to expanding worship spaces and other facilities.
Following the sung vespers service at St. Michael, Archbishop Vigneron said the fundraising element of the Changing Lives Together campaign is helping parishes position themselves, and the whole Catholic community, to do the truly important work of sharing Christ.
“It’s about getting ourselves in good order,” the archbishop said. “We are going to do a big push. This is not going to be a numbers drive. It’s about witness. We’ll now take the training wheels off. We’re going to the big leagues. We are going to change the community.”
Learn more about Changing Lives Together at www.aodclt.org.