Dear Columban Benefactors and Friends,
As we close the books on our most recent fiscal year, I want to thank you for your generous support of Columban mission. The support of our benefactors allows us to make Jesus Christ known to people around the world. With one fiscal year ending and a new one beginning, it seems appropriate to look back and reflect on the changes that have come into our lives.
In addition to the births and deaths, the graduations and weddings, the anniversaries, birthdays and other special days in our own lives this year, there were other events that stood out and challenged our capacity to understand their impact on the lives of millions. There were devastating earthquakes in Haiti, while Chile experienced both an earthquake and a tsunami. Then, floods wreaked havoc in Pakistan. Three countries faced enormous natural disasters, and millions of lives were disrupted. Yet, it is with great joy that Columbans were able to respond with prayer, direct assistance and financial assistance to those most in need.
We hope the closer look at Columban mission and our finances provided in this report conveys the depth of our gratitude and the efforts we make to be good stewards of the funds given us. We recognize the importance of learning about the charities you support allowing you to make prudent decisions regarding your donations. Thank you for your care and generosity.
As you review our Society’s figures, I would like you to keep in mind a few facts about the Columban Fathers. The Columban Fathers are classified in Catholic Church law as a “Society of Apostolic Life.” We have expenses similar to those of any religious community, including health care, retirement for aged and incapacitated members and education and training for seminarians. Certain expenses, such as transportation, health care and communicationss, are higher than those of other Catholic communities due to our international focus.
Our candidates’ seminary training must not only prepare them to work as worthy priests in their homelands but also in places where customs, languages and religious backgrounds are quite different. On the other end of the spectrum, retirement costs for returned missionaries are a growing expense. We need to ensure that those who have given long years of service building up the Church enjoy a tranquil retirement.
As Columbans, we see our role as making the Church here in the United States more aware of its responsibility for mission activities. We bring the worldwide Church home in our mission education programs, magazines and website. We also use our mission experience to help several U.S. dioceses care for new immigrant groups as they make the adjustment to a new language, culture and life in this nation.
As always, our priorities remain making Jesus Christ known, forming Eucharistic communities and helping struggling peoples regain their dignity. In one country after another, our missionaries are engaged with the local people to build a better world, a world where Jesus Christ reigns in truth and justice, love and peace. I am grateful to report that with the support of our benefactors we provided more than $8.1 million in direct aid to missions and mission programs in 2010. These funds are used to support the diverse ministries of over 500 Columban priests and lay missionaries.
Columban missions throughout the world require numerous resources. Not all of the needed resources will appear on our financial report. The sacrifices and generous spirit of priests, seminarians, lay missionaries and devoted employees along with the prayers and selflessness of the people who support Columban mission are the priceless resources that have supported us and allow us to move forward.
Gratefully yours in Christ,
Fr. Arturo Aguilar
U.S. Region Director
|Gifts for Priest and Student Education||37,878|
|Gifts for Specified Mission Projects||1,698,777|
|Gifts for Mission Education Programs||24,711|
|GLOBAL MISSION SUPPORT||5,344,424|
|U.S. MISSION SUPPORT||2,023,950|
|PRIEST EDUCATION, RETIREMENT, AND MEDICAL||569,875|
|Total Missionary Support Programs||8,177,031|
|REGIONAL ADMINISTRATION EXPENSES||1,112,257|
|MINISTRY OF DEVELOPMENT AND FUND-RAISING||2,644,678|
|INCREASE IN UNRESTRICTED NET ASSETS||5,061,762|
|*100% of donations raised went to mission services.
**(90% of other revenue was generated through investments)