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Honoring Our Past, Building Our Future

Commitment Weekend April 28-29, 2018!


1. What is the scope of our project?

The project consists of building a new parish hall, retiring our current debt, and building a capital reserve for major facilities repairs and maintenance.


2. Where did our debt come from?

Our debt is due to several large upgrades we have undertaken over the years including the building of the Our Lady of Grace facility (which houses our parish offices and preschool), our grade school, and acquiring the property across the street where our rectory for our priests and convent for our sisters are located.  We have been paying down this debt over the years, but we still have approximately $1.8 million dollars in debt remaining.


3. What is the advantage of paying off our debt quickly?

Paying off our debt at an accelerated rate will allow us to devote our resources to upgrading our facilities, expanding our ministries, and providing for our long-term growth and financial stability.  Our current interest expense alone is approximately $75,000 per year. 


4. What anticipated large repairs are needed in the parish and what are the estimated costs?

There are several major facilities issues that need to be addressed for the church including the floor, lighting, and the HVAC system which is already past its life cycle and will need to be replaced very soon. We currently have very low efficiency lighting in the church, and many of the ballasts are no longer functioning.  We are hoping to be able to totally replace all the lighting in the church with more energy efficient lighting which will end up reducing our energy costs significantly.  Additionally, the flooring in the church is in serious need of replacement.  We have been patching tiles for years, and our committee is in agreement that the floor ought to be replaced with a more durable and attractive flooring. The costs for all these repairs is estimated to be approximately $500,000.


5. What will the new parish hall include?

The new parish hall will include a large gathering space with enough seating for approximately 300 people at round tables.  The building will also include a warming kitchen, meeting room, a permanent stage, and an outdoor deck and patio with a fireplace. 

6. What are the benefits of a new parish hall

A new parish hall will allow us to host gatherings for parish and school events without conflicting with school hours or sporting events. Because we will be able to build the hall with enhanced A/V capabilities and clearer acoustics, it will provide us with a better space for faith formation and fellowship activities.  Additionally, the permanent stage will allow for fine arts and drama activities by our children.  And the outdoor deck and patio will provide for fair-weather activities for our parish fellowship ministries.


7. How was the location of the new parish hall determined?

About ten years ago, several of our parishioners worked to develop a master plan for our campus, which included repairing our field, renovating Herbert Hall, and building an expansion next to Herbert Hall to provide for the growing needs of our parish and schools. The first two parts were completed a few years ago, and in planning for a new parish hall, the committee discerned that initial plans of building on the area next to Herbert Hall would still be the best location.


8. Will the location of the new parish hall significantly reduce the size of our field?

Although building the new parish hall will reduce the size of the greenspace, the capital planning committee felt that since the field is extremely large, there would still be still plenty of space for outdoor parish and school activities, and that this space provides the best location with regard to convenience and accessibility. The new hall will also expand our possibilities for activities if the weather is bad, and the inclusion of an outdoor covered patio will allow for outdoor activities even in the case of rain.


9. How much will the parish hall cost to build?

The new parish hall will cost approximately $1.7 million to build.  This includes the hard (building) costs as well as the soft (consulting) costs.


10. What is the timeline for building the parish hall?

Our timeline for building is aggressive; we would like to begin building as early as June of 2018 to keep disruptions to the campus to a minimum.  Our estimated completion date is early 2019.


11. What is the overall goal for our capital campaign?

Our overall goal for the campaign is $4 million over three years.  This will allow us to pay for the new parish hall, retire our debt, and build up our capital reserve to support our major facilities repairs and maintenance.


12. How much cash is needed up front vs. pledged dollars?

In order to break ground on the new parish hall, we will need one third of the cost of building in cash and the remaining two thirds in pledges (the archdiocese will provide us with a bridge loan for up to two thirds of the amount of the cost of the building as long as we have the pledges to back the loan).  So we will need approximately $560,000 in cash gifts and the remaining $1.14 million in pledges in order to begin building.  It is very important for us to reach our full $4 million goal, however, in order to provide for all of our future needs. 


13. How much will I be asked to pledge?

Every gift is important to the success of the campaign.  We recognize that not everyone can make the same size gift, but everyone can make the same size sacrifice as a commitment to supporting our mission as a parish family. We are asking each individual or family to consider making a gift or pledge of at least $3600 (in addition to your regular offertory giving). This translates to $100 per month over a three year period.  In order for us to be successful, however, any family who has the ability to pledge $10,000, $25,000, $50,000, $100,000, or even more is asked to prayerfully consider doing so.

14. When will the pledge commitment occur?

Our main commitment weekend for all of our parishioners will be the weekend of April 29th, which is the feast of our patroness, St. Catherine of Siena.  This will be a wonderful opportunity for all of us to truly give thanks to the Lord for the blessing of our parish and to recommit to furthering our mission.  Many parishioners may choose to make a gift or a pledge before this date, however.


(authored by Sr. Mary Jacinta, O.P., Grade School Principal)

1. Will there be enough space on the field for the students to engage in physical activities (e.g. recess) safely?

The field will be large enough for recess and other outdoor events to be conducted safely and smoothly.  The architects and engineers are still working on the building plans; once the plans are finalized, we will be able to publish the exact measurements of the building vs. field area.  It is perhaps helpful to know that there are four shifts of recess daily: K-1st, 2nd-3rd, 4th-5th, 6th-8th.  Each shift in K-5th involves no more than 100 students at a time.  Middle school is typically at around 120 students.  And, it may also be helpful to know that, by way of comparison, the field will still be larger than the blacktop – on days when the field is too wet, we utilize the blacktop for recess.


2. Will the parish hall be used during school hours?  Will this compromise the safety of our students, especially during recess?

As with the church and the pre-school and parish building, the new parish hall will be used during school hours.  The school building will remain in lock-down during the school day.  The architects are working on designs of walkways and building entrances to ensure proper separation of students from non-school persons during school hours.


3.  Is the parish hall at all beneficial to our school?

The parish hall will be a tremendous blessing to our school.  Currently, there are many instructional activities which are not functioning at optimal capacity because of space limits:  Grandparents’ Day, Primary Program, Living Stations of the Cross, all the themed-learning days for 1st Grade, Academic Fair, Fine Arts Day, units of STEM lessons (these tend to require a lot of open space), 1st Holy Communion retreat, 3rd Grade’s Our Lady of Guadalupe presentation, the Young Actors Drama program, to name a few.


4.  How are members of the school community involved in the planning and decision-making of this project?

Since Father’s arrival at St. Catherine’s, he has invited a committee of parishioners to support him in discerning the growing needs of the parish and making recommendations to ensure proper stewardship of our parish community.  Among the members of this committee are a number of parents of the school.  These parents have advised Father along the planning process and continue to do so.  The first three questions above have been thoroughly explored and discussed by all the members of this committee.

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