Can you believe that April is already half over? Before long it will be time for our Parish Carnival and other Spring events. One such event is the Pasta Dinner, which will be held in the school cafeteria on Roseberry Street this afternoon. The school will have an Open House at the same time. I'm looking forward to having a nice time and a nice meal with lots of you!
A few weeks ago, I told you that I would give you an update on our Parish Capital Campaign this month, and I want to dedicate the rest of this column to that. We have reached (actually gone just over) our goal of $1,400,000 in pledges. To date we have already received $379,242 in payments.
We have already completed two projects with this money. A new roof was completed over the school gymnasium for a cost of $59,250. This roof has a manufacturers' warranty of 20 years – and God willing, it will last that long! We also completed some electrical upgrades in the rectory (especially the kitchen area) at a cost of $6,185. HVAC (Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) improvements to the school and Mercy Hall were among the projects on our list, and $11,500 has been paid so far to begin this work.
In addition to these projects, we have paid $60,000 to cover the administrative costs of the campaign. This was paid to the Cuneen/Cathedral Corporation who produced the brochures and mailings and handles a lot of the campaign record keeping. While it seems like a lot of money, it represents a small percentage of the pledges. We also paid $31,680 towards this year's Bishop's Annual Appeal. This represents a bit less than half of our goal. Of note is the fact that some very generous parishioners made donations to the Bishop's Appeal – even though we are not receiving mailings for it this year. Their generosity lowered the amount that we will pay out of our campaign, and I am grateful to them for this. This leaves us with a balance of $212,647 as I write this on Monday afternoon. That number is constantly changing as new payments come in each day. Many thanks are due to all of you who have so generously supported this campaign!
In the coming weeks we (the Buildings and Grounds Committee and I) will be meeting with three different companies regarding their proposals to repair our historic pipe organ. Although we do not envision this project getting off the ground until after we complete the electrical upgrades in the Church and making repairs to the steeple, it is a long process that must be started well in advance. We have been told that, due to the nature of this work and the limited number of people that are qualified to work on such organs, it will take about a year between when we choose a contractor and work on the organ actually begins! (Incidentally, three of the largest gifts to the campaign, each of $100,000, were made specifically for the organ.)
By the time you read this, I will have met with a possible contractor about the steeple and – hopefully – have a more concrete proposal for the electrical upgrades in the Church. I will continue to keep you informed in this space. Say a Hail Mary for me and know that you are in my