Giving Society Celebrates Donors to the Diocese
By Amanda Hudson, News Editor
June 11, 2020
DIOCESE—“This year in celebration of our 45th year of the annual appeal we thought it would be a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the generosity of the parishioners that have been so dedicated to supporting the appeal and the ministries it supports,” says Denise Dobrowolski, director of the Office of Charitable Giving for the diocese.
The Annual Appeal raises money for diocesan services, from the Bishop’s Office to the Newman Center, education to vocations. Each campaign runs for a year. Parishioners make a one-time donation or make pledges to be paid in increments over the course of the year (normally over 10 months). Those donations keep the Diocese of Rockford operating its supportive services to parishes and parishioners and benefits the community also, mostly through the work of Catholic Charities.
Parishes receive credit for the donations given by their parishioners, and any amount collected that is over a parish’s target goes back to that parish.
To celebrate donors, the Charitable Giving Office has established a Leadership Giving Society, with each level corresponding to a particular “patron saint.” Those levels are:
– Society of St. Teresa of Calcutta — $500-$999
– Society of St. James — $1,000-$1,499
– Society of St. Stephen — $1,500-$2,499
– Society of Our Lady of Guadalupe — $2,500-$4,999
– Society of St. Michael — $5,000-$9,999
– Society of St. Peter — $10,000 and up
“We look forward to planning events for the various levels of donors.  Our goal is to celebrate and thank those parishioners throughout the year with Masses in the deaneries, special events throughout the diocese, a reschedule of our Mass of Thanksgiving, and more,” Dobrowolski says. “Unfortunately due to the current pandemic, we have not been able to plan specific events for each of the giving societies.”
In his thank you letter to donors, Bishop David Malloy says, “Jesus has entrusted the Church and each of us with teaching others about Him and sharing His love in the world. Carrying out this sacred mission requires the prayers and generosity of all of us who are members of His Body, the Church.”
One example from the St. James Society brochure tells why he was made the society patron for that donor level:
“As the leader of the Church in Jerusalem following Christ’s return to His heavenly Father, James’ commitment to this young community of faith, one that would return him to Christ through martyrdom, ensured a Church that has healed, taught and redeemed for more than two millennia. Called a ‘pillar’ of faith by St. Paul, you, like St. James, through your generous support of the Diocesan Appeal, are a pillar that ensures the success of this campaign and sustains the healing, teaching and redemptive presence of Christ for the more than 400,000 Catholics who reside within the 12 counties of the Diocese of Rockford.”


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