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What Development Means to Me by Rhen Hoehn


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...

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Heroic Pastors; Amazing Parishes - An Interview with Kevin Cotter on the Petrus Development Show

In this episode, Andrew visits with Kevin Cotter, Executive Director of Amazing Parishes, a ministry of the church that offers instruction and education to pastors as well as coaching to help them develop a team around them to make their parish amazing. We all know and have experienced our church leadership transitioning over the years. Many priests and pastors struggle to know how to lead and how to build up an enduring leadership team that can survive those transitions, illustrating a point that parish leadership is so important and critical to the community and to the lives of the parishioners. In this episode, Andrew and Kevin dive into this issue as well as discussing the importance of the apprenticeship model in the church and the need for a strong prayer life both personally and professionally. 

Amazing Parish will be gathering for their 2021 conference in Kansas City on June 21-23. Please pray for everyone involved in that and if you want more information...

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Petrus Development Grows to Meet New Demands of COVID-19 Church

news team Sep 01, 2020

New Director of Client Services to serve growing market for parish, diocesan, and ministry consulting 


College Station, TX - September 1, 2020 - Petrus Development announces the promotion of Tara Doyon as Director of Client Services and Senior Consultant. Tara previously served as a general consultant and has been an invaluable member of the Petrus team for five years, faithfully assisting dozens of client ministries launch or expand their development efforts.

During a time of change in the Church, new resources are needed to guide and assist Catholic institutions and organizations make necessary pivots. “Over the years, Petrus has done significant work for the Church and for a number of wonderful ministries,” Andrew Robison, President of Petrus Development.  “We are excited to promote Tara to this larger role with the company. In these difficult times of pandemic and economic shutdown, it is even more important that we provide excellent service and...

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Josh Whelan joins Petrus as Vice President & Senior Consultant

focus news team Sep 09, 2019

Petrus Development is pleased to announce the addition of Josh Whelan to the Petrus team as Vice President and Senior Consultant. Josh comes to Petrus from the Fellowship of Catholic University Students where he spent nearly three years as a Sr. Director and Area Director of the South Region. As a member of the Petrus team, Josh will bring his experience and passion for Catholic philanthropy to ministries looking to form strong development foundations, build up their programming and accelerate their physical and ministerial growth. 

The President of Petrus, Andrew Robison, is thrilled to have Josh joining the team. “Josh is a true professional that really understands how to grow a ministry and take it from good to great! He has had amazing experiences throughout his career implementing annual fund strategies, securing major gifts and planning and launching capital campaigns, and he’s an excellent teacher and coach. His passion for his Catholic faith drives him and I...

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Lectures, Metrics and Boards…Oh My: Interview with Jamie Cappetta on The Petrus Development Show


Jamie Cappetta, President of Our Savior Parish and Caruso Catholic Center at the University of Southern California


In this episode, Andrew visits with Jamie Cappetta, President of Our Savior Parish and USC Caruso Catholic Center. Jamie started his career as a street minister in South Boston but found his way into development thanks to an invitation from John Flynn, one of the co-founders of Petrus. In this episode, Andrew and Jamie discuss his career transitions, the great speaker series at Yale Catholic Center, his strong feelings about the importance of goals and metrics, the powerpacked board that he manages at the USC Caruso Catholic Center and much more.



Show Notes:

  • Jamie started his career as a street minister in South Boston. After some time discerning the priesthood, Jamie went to work at the Catholic Center at the University of Massachusetts – Amherst as the director of development. Jamie was later recruited to the Yale Catholic Center and then the Caruso...
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Be Not Overwhelmed

prayer resources team Aug 28, 2018

The following is from the Petrus Annual Manual Weekly Emails. Visit the Annual Manual page to learn more about the Petrus Annual Manual.


Development is a demanding job, and it can be emotionally taxing.

Successful fundraising requires you to put yourself out there in a vulnerable way. If you are doing development right you are likely to find yourself in some uncomfortable or awkward situations. Fundraising also inherently requires some level of failure. No matter how you approach it, some percentage of your mailing list will ask to be removed each year. A percentage of people whom you ask for money will say “no” immediately, sometimes rudely. Some people may even start avoiding you, thinking that you are simply out to shake them down for money.

Most, if not all people who embark in development efforts experience moments of discouragement because of this.

However long that you have served in a development role now, you have dealt with some of these experiences. On top of...

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Megan Dillon Joins the Petrus Team as Consultant

news team Jul 13, 2018

Petrus Development is pleased to announce that Megan Dillon recently joined the Petrus team as our newest Consultant. In addition to her work with Petrus, Megan is also Director of Advancement and Communications for the St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Center at the University of Colorado in Boulder. In her role as a Petrus Consultant, Megan will work with ministries to help them expand their ministry programs through investing in building sustainable development programs.

The President of Petrus, Andrew Robison, is very excited to have Megan joining the team. “I have known Megan for many years and have always been impressed with her. She is a fearless fundraiser and I believe that comes from her intense desire to grow the ministry and evangelization efforts to the Catholic students of the University of Colorado.”

Prior to her role at the Catholic Center, Megan worked in the Washington, D.C. area as the Director of Media Relations at the National Right to Life Committee and...

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Kyle Jaeger Joins the Petrus Team as Account Manager

news team Jun 24, 2018

Today, Kyle Jaeger joins Petrus Development as our new Account Manager. Kyle came to Petrus from St. Paul’s Newman Center at North Dakota State University, where he helped build a strong development program and lead the Move Newman Forward Capital Campaign to more than $15M in gifts and commitments. As Account Manager for Petrus, Kyle will work with new and existing clients to help them transform their ministries through development.

The President of Petrus, Andrew Robison, is thrilled to have Kyle joining the team. “Over the years, Petrus has done significant work for the Church and for a number of wonderful ministries. Bringing Kyle on to the team to help us connect with even more organizations that want and need to grow their fundraising efforts is going to help us take things to the next level.”

Originally from Plymouth MN, Kyle moved to Fargo, ND in 2004 to attend North Dakota State University and complete his undergraduate degree in business. While at NDSU,...

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