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 Diocesan Lenten Appeal

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Though my time as Bishop of Greensburg has been brief, I feel so blessed to be here and witness the faith of this community and its true sense of caring for one another. I take joy in being surrounded by such merciful souls and find that particularly significant in that this is the Jubilee Year of Mercy as declared by Pope Francis.

In God's great mercy, he looked upon the world with compassion and sent his Son. Today, it is the central mission of the church to proclaim Jesus, who is mercy, and to tell the good news that God loves the world. This takes shape in both our words and our acts. Yes, this is the mission of the Diocese of Greensburg and why we have chosen A Mission of Mercy as our theme for this year's Diocesan Lenten Appeal.

The Appeal offers all an opportunity to participate in and promote the central mission of the church. With your support, we are able to show mercy to those around us who are most in need, both spiritually and physically. I ask that you join us in our Mission of Mercy.

"Let us rediscover these corporal works of mercy: to feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked, welcome the stranger, heal the sick, visit the imprisoned, and bury the dead. And let us not forget the spiritual works of mercy: to counsel the doubtful, instruct the ignorant, admonish sinners, comfort the afflicted, forgive offences, bear patiently those who do us ill, and pray for the living and the dead."
- Bull of Indiction of the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy

 Works of Mercy

We are extremely grateful for your past generosity and ask that you consider participating in this year's Diocesan Lenten Appeal. This is your opportunity to be part of our great "mission of mercy" and help the less fortunate among us. Your support helps us bring Christ, who is mercy, to the many people of our diocese.

To participate in this year's Diocesan Lenten Appeal, you can fill out and return the commitment card that was mailed to you, complete a card on Commitment Weekend, make your commitment online or contact The Catholic Foundation at 724-552-2502.

Feed the Hungry, Give Drink to the Thirsty
"The Lord's mercy is often realized through his people … through acts of kindness, generosity and help." - Msgr. V. Paul Fitzmaurice

One facet of the Appeal is that 100% of funds raised over the parish goal are returned to the parish. At St. Agnes Parish in North Huntingdon, these funds had traditionally gone to renovation of the church. Last year, as pastor Msgr. V. Paul Fitzmaurice said, "We needed to look beyond ourselves." Through a connection that one parishioner, Cynthia Kandra, had with a Sister Elvira, who has devoted her life to serving the poor children of Masbate, Philippines, it was decided to help support the nun's efforts in this remote village.

Visit the Imprisoned
"The diocese makes it possible for me to bring the Catholic message behind the fences and razor wire."
- Father James Petrovsky

For more than 10 years, Father James Petrovsky has been on a mission of mercy, visiting the SCI Fayette prison twice weekly. Father Petrovsky said, "You could call it a vocation … a calling. I just got eased into it and took it to heart. In essence, we have a small parish. It's a community." The Appeal makes this kind of mercy possible, allowing the diocese to support one priest and his dedication to bringing the good news of Jesus Christ into what may seem to be the most unlikely of places.

Comfort the Afflicted
"Ours is a healing ministry. We bring a new start to people who have had a bad situation." - Msgr. William R. Rathgeb

For Catholics who have had the misfortune of a failed marriage, the Tribunal offers reconciliation and forgiveness through the annulment process. Annulments allow someone to remarry and once again receive the sacraments. Msgr. William R. Rathgeb, judicial vicar for the diocese, said, "This is important because it's the only way a Catholic can resolve a failed marriage issue." A significant portion of the costs of annulments, primarily personnel, are covered by the diocese. Of particular importance to those who cannot afford the fee, this is made possible by support of the Appeal. Furthermore, this support becomes even more significant now that Pope Francis has asked that this process be free to all.

Forgive Offenses
"Oftentimes the biggest mercy shown through God is that the person is able to forgive themselves."
- Msgr. Raymond E. Riffle

Project Rachel, a post abortion counseling resource, operates under the theme – "Hope After Abortion." For those who struggle in the aftermath of an abortion, Catholic Charities offers this special program to help them come to peace with themselves. Msgr. Raymond E. Riffle, managing director of Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Greensburg, said, "It is not uncommon for someone to confess over and over again that they've had an abortion because they don't feel like they're forgiven. It is a tremendous internal struggle and we assist people with that." As with so many of the programs and services offered by Catholic Charities, Project Rachel is made possible through the support of the Diocesan Lenten Appeal.

Instruct the Ignorant
"We provide opportunities for those of all ages to encounter Christ. So that through this encounter, all may come to know the mercy of God and his great love for each of us."
- Barbara Zucconi

Barbara Zucconi, faith formation director at St. Anne Parish, Rostraver, is one of the many people throughout the diocese who help parishioners encounter Christ and deepen relationships with their faith through the church. As she put it, "I love what I do at our parish. I don't call it a job. It's a ministry, a vocation.  It's a wonderful experience to be part of someone's spiritual journey." From helping a couple prepare for the baptism of their infant and working with second graders getting ready for their first communion to youth ministry and RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults), the work of Barbara and others like her is supported by people's generous giving to the Appeal.

 How Your Gifts Are Used

23.9% Catholic Schools
Providing support for children to attend our Catholic elementary, Catholic high schools, and the Office for Catholic Schools.

23.5% Support to Parishes
Each parish receives all funds it raises over its goal for local needs as determined by the pastor and parish leadership. This may include funds for outreach, youth ministry, facility improvements or other needs.

16.6% Diocesan Ministries
The DLA funds the important work of the Offices for Evangelization and Faith Formation, Worship, Lay Ecclesial Ministry, Planning, Prison Ministry and Hospital Ministry.

12.1% Catholic Charities
Meeting the emotional and material needs of others, especially the poorest and most vulnerable among us with utility assistance, food and clothing vouchers, counseling and adoption services.

8.7% Ordained Ministry
The funds for ordained ministry are used to educate seminarians, prepare men for the permanent diaconate, international priests, continuing education and ongoing formation for our priests and care of our retired priests.

7.8% Diocesan Administration
The funds are used to pay for services provided by the diocese to parishes, schools, Catholic Charities and the Bishop Connare Center; including IT services and support, facilities management assistance and financial services.

7.5% Appeal Expenses
The appeal expenses include printing, postage and mailing services, gift processing and personnel costs.

 Parish Case Statements

​The Diocesan Lenten Appeal supports ministry at the diocesan and parish levels. The diocesan goal for the 2016 Appeal is $3,441,344. Each parish is asked to raise a specific amount in support of ministry at the diocesan level. All funds raised over that amount are returned to the parishes and used to support needs that the parishes have identified. Parish needs for 2016 total $1,081,547. The combined overall goal for the 2016 Diocesan Lenten Appeal is $4,488,130.

The goal allocations for each parish in the diocese are listed below. The list includes 2016 diocesan and parish targets, as well as the combined 2016 diocesan and parish target total. The final column includes the parish case statement.

View the Monthly Parish Update Spreadsheet.

​For more information about the 2016 Diocesan Lenten Appeal, please contact Mike Lucotch at 724-552-2502.

Case Statements
expand Town : Apollo ‎(1)
expand Town : Avonmore ‎(1)
expand Town : Belle Vernon ‎(1)
expand Town : Blairsville ‎(1)
expand Town : Brady's Bend ‎(1)
expand Town : Brownsville ‎(1)
expand Town : Cadogan ‎(1)
expand Town : Connellsville ‎(3)
expand Town : Coral ‎(1)
expand Town : Crabtree ‎(1)
expand Town : Delmont ‎(1)
expand Town : Derry ‎(1)
expand Town : Donegal ‎(1)
expand Town : Dunbar ‎(1)
expand Town : East Vandergrift ‎(1)
expand Town : Everson ‎(1)
expand Town : Export ‎(1)
expand Town : Fairchance ‎(1)
expand Town : Farmington ‎(1)
expand Town : Ford City ‎(1)
expand Town : Freeport ‎(1)
expand Town : Greensburg ‎(4)
expand Town : Grindstone ‎(1)
expand Town : Harrison City ‎(1)
expand Town : Herminie ‎(1)
expand Town : Indiana ‎(2)
expand Town : Irwin ‎(1)
expand Town : Jeannette ‎(2)
expand Town : Kent ‎(1)
expand Town : Kittanning ‎(1)
expand Town : Latrobe ‎(4)
expand Town : Leechburg ‎(1)
expand Town : Ligonier ‎(1)
expand Town : Lower Burrell ‎(1)
expand Town : Marguerite ‎(1)
expand Town : Monessen ‎(1)
expand Town : Mount Pleasant ‎(2)
expand Town : Murrysville ‎(1)
expand Town : New Alexandria ‎(1)
expand Town : New Derry ‎(1)
expand Town : New Kensington ‎(3)
expand Town : North Huntingdon ‎(2)
expand Town : Northern Indiana County ‎(1)
expand Town : Perryopolis ‎(1)
expand Town : Point Marion ‎(1)
expand Town : Rostraver ‎(1)
expand Town : Saltsburg ‎(1)
expand Town : Scottdale ‎(1)
expand Town : Seward ‎(1)
expand Town : Slickville ‎(1)
expand Town : Trafford ‎(1)
expand Town : Uniontown ‎(4)
expand Town : United ‎(1)
expand Town : Vandergrift ‎(1)
expand Town : West Newton ‎(1)
expand Town : Western Fayette County ‎(1)
expand Town : Whitney ‎(1)
expand Town : Yatesboro ‎(1)
expand Town : Youngstown ‎(1)
expand Town : Youngwood ‎(1)
expand Town : Yukon ‎(1)