By Jamie Cappetta, President, USC Caruso Catholic Center and Petrus Consultant
Like many development professionals, I didn’t start my career aspiring to be a fundraiser, but rather my aspiration was that of a professional baseball player. However, when I did not get drafted my senior year in college having played all four years at the University of Richmond, I decided to scratch the itch of the priesthood that had been ruminating in my heart for several years. The first step in that exploration was as a youth minister in South Boston for two years, followed by a year of discernment. During that discernment year, I worked at the Catholic Worker House in Philadelphia, the Christian Appalachian Project in Kentucky, and finally made a solo, three-month pilgrimage to Europe with one question in mind: “Lord, am I called to be a priest?”
Returning from that trip in May 2000, I confidently knew God was not calling me to the priesthood, but my heart...
By Meghan Larsen-Reidy, Campus Minister, Diocese of Pittsburgh
My background is in ministry and not in development; however, the pandemic made it impossible to continue doing ministry without fundraising. There was a reduction in the funding source of my job’s budget, and in order for it to continue, I needed to begin fundraising. Suddenly the Petrus Development Conference, which had not been on my radar before Covid-19, seemed like the most logical event to attend in order to learn more. Although I was initially intimidated because of my lack of prior experience and knowledge of the other attendees, I was at ease after the first few sessions. I was inspired to hear about the growth one ministry in particular had because of strategic fundraising. The lessons shared were ones I could easily apply to my own situation. Throughout the few days, the talks varied between practical development strategies, inspiring stories of serious growth in ministries, and useful...
In this episode, Andrew visits with Mark Randall, the executive director of the Pontifical North American College (a.k.a the NAC). Together, Andrew and Mark share about their fundraising adventures, and Mark offers advice for startup ministries and seasoned fundraising professionals.
Mark has a fun and varied background. He began his professional career in the food and beverage industry in Chicago, after which he learned to be a chocolatier and started a gourmet food company. After helping to start a software company, Mark applied for his first position in Catholic fundraising, and from there, he has raised money for several Catholic schools and ministries. He is currently the executive director of the NAC in Rome.
Pontifical North American College
The Pontifical North American College (the NAC) is a seminary located just outside the Vatican for the formation of diocesan priests from the U.S. It was...
In this episode, Andrew visits with Craig Miller, the president of FOCUS, the Fellowship of Catholic University Students. Together, Andrew and Craig talk about FOCUS, its ministry to college students, and the organization’s unique fundraising challenges. They also discuss the tremendous growth of campus ministry in recent decades and note how that important trajectory might continue in the future.
Before entering the world of Catholic fundraising and becoming president at FOCUS, Craig worked in the tech industry in California. He and his family left California and moved to Colorado where, at a parish event, Craig first learned about FOCUS’s ministry. Craig soon changed careers and joined FOCUS in its ministry to Catholic college students.
FOCUS in 2022
FOCUS currently serves nearly 200 college campuses with physical teams of missionaries on campus. They also have digital teams ministering to another...
In this 100th episode, Andrew visits with Bishop David Konderla from the Diocese of Tulsa and Eastern Oklahoma. Andrew met Bishop Konderla when they worked together at St. Mary's Catholic Center in College Station, and the pair discusses the successes of the campus ministry’s multi-decade capital campaign. Bishop Konderla also offers insight and advice into how a bishop can (and cannot!) support parish and ministry fundraising campaigns in his diocese.
Bishop David Konderla was appointed as bishop to the Diocese of Tulsa in 2016. Prior to his appointment as bishop, Bishop Konderla served in various roles in the Diocese of Austin, including as the diocesan vocations director and as the pastor and director of campus ministry at St. Mary’s Catholic Center in College Station.
Diocese of Tulsa and Eastern Oklahoma
The Diocese of Tulsa and Eastern Oklahoma is a very rural diocese. Bishop...
Funny story, we used a moving company and I had in my mind that they would load our furniture into a truck and drive straight to our new place. Well, as it turns out, they had two other stops on the way so we moved into our temporary apartment with our travel suitcases, our two dogs and whatever we brought with us in the car. It took about a week and a half for the rest of our belongings to make it to us so to give us a place to sit, our first purchase was a Walmart futon which served as our couch, bed and dining table for about 10 days. Lesson...
In this episode, Andrew visits with Dr. Mike St. Pierre, Executive Director of Catholic Campus Ministry Association (CCMA). When Mike joined CCMA in 2015, he was able to bring new life and new energy to the organization. Andrew and Mike discuss CCMA, how Mike decided to leave a successful career in Catholic schools to lead the organization, and about his approach to remote work…even before it was cool. They are also able to discuss the importance of professionalism and how to organize your schedule using an Agile method. Be sure to listen till the end for Andrew's Key Take-Aways.
In 1893, Timothy Harrington, founded the Newman Club at the University of Pennsylvania. In 1908, the Federation of Catholic College Students (FCCS) was established at Purdue University. 42 years later, in 1950, the National Newman Chaplains Association was established for ordained chaplains at non-Catholic colleges and universities. And then in 1969, the...
By Rhen Hoehn, St. Albert the Great University Parish Development Director, Houghton, Michigan
I grew up in a Catholic family that practiced the faith. While I was preparing for confirmation, I went on a NET (National Evangelization Team) retreat. This retreat plus the grace of the sacrament energized me even more to be a better Catholic.
After I started college at Michigan Technological University, I became very involved with St. Albert the Great University Parish. I attended Mass, and Catholics in my dorm invited me to parish activities and events. For three year I was a “chapel rat,” one of a group of six students who, in exchange for an apartment, did maintenance chores around the parish. Houghton is in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. With an annual average snowfall of more than 200 inches, that involved a lot of shoveling!
My first development experience was a job to help raise money to fix the church’s leaking roof. I took the job because I needed...
By Mary Hernandez, Petrus Blog Contributor
Three Cheers for the Class Gift
The class gift tradition is widely recognized in educational circles. Schools have received benches, statues, fountains, trees, and other commemorative items from grateful grads. Many Catholic ministries have invited their graduates to consider participating in a monetary Class Gift. This type of Class Gift is one of the most significant ways for a graduate to leave a legacy, support future students who will find their home at the Catholic Center on campus, and participate in its mission. This initiative builds an automatic connection between the ministry and its alumni, leaves room for flexibility and growth, and naturally provides many opportunities for stewardship and alumni celebrations as giving milestones are reached. There is no downside to implementing a Class Gift in your ministry.
Teach Students to Give Early and Often
But why wait...
By Mary Hernandez, Petrus Blog Contributor
Engaging Parents in Campus Ministry
College campus ministries across the country are working feverishly to welcome their flock of new and returning students. If we haven't thought of extending our hospitality to good ‘ole mom and dad, we should.
Once engaged with your mission, parents can become your ministry's biggest fan and promote it in their hometown and community. They can serve as dedicated prayer warriors, storming heaven for the students and ministry team. Parents can also provide vital financial support by supporting your mission with a monthly gift or funding a particular initiative.
First, a Proper Introduction
You may have an opportunity to meet new parents during a campus visit or by hosting an open house during move-in weekend, but by and large, you will introduce your ministry through mail or email.
Each semester should begin with a student registration process so that your Catholic center can acquire...