by Bill Maloney
On Oct. 30, I will have completed my third year as archdiocesan director of stewardship and development and executive director of the Catholic Foundation of Northeast Kansas.
I have been blessed to serve in these roles. However, one thing I have learned over and over again is that most Catholics do not understand who I work for, especially when I speak of the Catholic Foundation.
Most people think I work for Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas or the Catholic Education Foundation. Both of those organizations do tremendous work and are very worthy of your support. So, after three years, maybe it’s time to clear this up.
The Catholic Foundation of Northeast Kansas was founded in 1989 by Archbishop Ignatius J. Strecker. The foundation exists to build and steward the permanent endowment funds of our parishes, schools and archdiocesan ministries.
In addition to that, the mission of the foundation is to promote the spiritual mission of the church by encouraging stewardship and to collaborate with parishes and institutions to develop additional support.
The Catholic Foundation currently holds over $130 million in assets held in over 250 separate funds. The assets are invested in accordance with the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ socially responsible investment guidelines. We offer a wide array of opportunities for the faithful of the archdiocese. In addition to endowments in support of our institutions, we offer the opportunity to establish scholarship funds and donor advised funds.
The Catholic Foundation encourages stewardship by educating parishioners on many topics related to charitable giving. We host seminars on topics such as wills and trusts and charitable gift planning. The Catholic Foundation is also proud to sponsor the Giving Tuesday initiative, the newly formed Catholic Advisors Network and to host educational symposiums for the development professionals of the archdiocese.
There is an old joke that starts out “I am from the IRS and I’m here to help . . .” Well, when it comes to the Catholic Foundation, we truly are here to help. The Catholic Foundation exists as a tool for the faithful and ministries of the archdiocese. The fees that are generated and collected from the funds are reinvested back into the archdiocese through our grants program. Also, the fee income subsidizes the salaries of staff who are out working with our donors, parishes, schools and ministries.
Please visit our website — CFNEK.org — to learn more about the products, services and upcoming events. A member of our staff would be happy to meet with you to assist with your charitable giving questions.
The Catholic Foundation of Northeast Kansas looks forward to growing our impact throughout the archdiocese. We are hopeful that the faithful will begin to know who we are and invest in the future of our church.