Loving God, we come to You,
standing together in faith,
ready to realize the freshness of a bold endeavor,
as we look to the future of our Church.
Building up the Kingdom of God on earth
is Your will and our privilege.
Bless our efforts with the energy and enthusiasm we need.
Jesus, our Redeemer, encourage and guide us.
Open our hearts to be good stewards
because of our love for You.
Holy Spirit, our Sanctifier, empower us
to carry out Your will for the Upon This Rock campaign.
May Your Goodness be upon us,
And give us success to the work of our hands and hearts.
We ask Your blessing now and always
through Christ Our Lord.
Upon This Rock will strengthen our
parishes as the center of our faith community, while providing pastoral care
and outreach across our diocese through evangelization and stewardship. Read more below to discover how your
generosity can benefit these vital ministries.
Beyond the Holy Eucharist, local parishes are typically the most identifiable elements of the Catholic Church. These faith communities are the heart of our daily lives as Catholics; where we first come to understand what it means to know and serve Christ, receive the sacraments, celebrate our faith, and enjoy fellowship. As a Catholic community, we have a vested interest in ensuring that every parish is able to tend to the pastoral needs of each individual and family. Because of their importance in the communities they serve, the largest percentage of campaign funds will be dedicated to identifying and addressing local projects in each of our 164 parishes.
Every parish has a unique set of needs and aspirations. Some parishes are in need of physical repairs or enhancements, while others wish to develop a new program or ministry. Your parish will receive 35% percent of your contribution to address its particular needs and aspirations. An additional 5% of funds raised will be placed in a permanent Parish Support Endowment, which will provide resources and emergency funding to parishes in need.
Over time, all campaign funds will benefit your local parish through diocesan-wide ministries, programs, and direct grants. Upon This Rock will impact every parish across the eight counties in our diocese, both directly and indirectly.
Being Catholic today is very different than it was 150 years ago, or even 50 years ago.
We must continue to joyfully share our faith with others by inviting them to know Jesus and join in the fullness of the Catholic faith. In order to effectively promote the message of the Gospel in our modern world, the Diocese of Buffalo has established the Office of Evangelization. Upon This Rock will fund a permanent and secure evangelization-focused endowment that will provide annual funding so we may transform the way in which we spread God's infinite love and foster Catholic values in our society.
Technology has provided us with the ability to create a multifaceted digital presence to evangelize and educate people interested in learning more about joining or growing in the Catholic faith. For those who have never been part of or have drifted away from the Church, websites can be a place to answer questions and establish an understanding of what it means to be Roman Catholic. A stronger web presence will serve as a resource for people to learn more about their faith and further their understanding of Church teaching. It also will be a space where they can assess their gifts and interests to discover their unique skills and talents and identify the best ways that they can serve their parish, the diocese, and the larger Roman Catholic Church.
As a church in the 21st century, we need to re-envision the parish as a place for discipleship and a center of formation. This endowment will provide resources for all parishes to create new tools for evangelization, establish unique digital platforms, and renew the way they interact with, and reach out to, members of the community. These platforms will offer opportunities for life-long faith formation, as well as training for liturgical ministries, sacramental preparation, and faith-based family activities.
While technology is essential to our
modern society, it is important to provide opportunities for people to give
and experience real, living witness to God's love. Therefore, Upon This Rock will provide support for faith
formation programs, mission opportunities, and the training and development of
catechetical leadership within parishes.
The New Evangelization is at the heart of the long-term vision for the Catholic Church in Western New York. Catholic communities around the world are exploring and discovering new ways to engage parishioners that have drifted away and those who wish to be welcomed into the faith. As a diocese, we must be proactive and inviting by providing a welcoming and vibrant atmosphere that engages people spiritually, comforts them pastorally, and encourages them to explore what it means to be Catholic.
Upon This Rock funding will allow for the development and implementation of multi-media outreach to Catholics in the greater Western New York community. The $1 million in funds allocated to communications and outreach will upgrade and expand all of our media resources and communication tools, so we may deliver the Good News and mission of our Church in modern formats to all people and effectively provide outreach to people of all languages and cultures.
In addition to sharing the faith and
inviting people into the life of the Church, our new communications and
outreach efforts will help during times of transition, engage and develop lay
leaders, and build faith-filled parish communities.
As Catholics, we are committed to a culture which cherishes and celebrates all life. The Department of Pro-Life Activities in the Diocese of Buffalo is dedicated to promoting the sanctity of life from conception to natural death and offers several programs to assist those in need of services surrounding pro-life issues.
For example, Project Rachel exists to promote forgiveness, healing, and hope to anyone suffering from the effects of an abortion, and the St. Gianna Molla Pregnancy & Outreach Information Center provides pastoral outreach to single mothers, fathers, and young families in the early years of a child's life.
In order to build upon what the Diocese currently offers in support of the respect for all life, Upon This Rock will direct $2 million to fund the establishment and continual services of the Mother Teresa Home. This transitional residence will provide homeless pregnant women or young mothers with housing and support for six to 18 months while they focus on improving their ability to provide for themselves and their famililies. In addition to safe and stable living accommodations, the Mother Teresa Home will provide residents with an array of vital programs enabling them to become effective and supportive parents, including classes in parenting skills, child development, family budgeting, and health and nutrition. The home also will offer opportunities through partnerships with Catholic Charities and other agencies for furthering education and assistance in job preparation and attainment.
The decision to choose life can be a truly agonizing one if a woman lacks the resources or support necessary to care for her baby. It is our sincere hope that this home will alleviate some of the stress of the decision and enable more women and families to choose life by providing them with the comfort and support they will need in the wake of this important decision.