Katrina Fernandez answered a letter about the annual Catholic appeal. The writer thought that being asked to donate every year was “crass and tacky”. Katrina responded:
I typically go to Mass two or three times a week so it’s fair to say I probably hear, at the very minimum, around 104 homilies a year. Of those 104 homilies, only two Sundays are devoted to our Annual Diocesan Support Appeal. For all the good the Church does throughout the entire year, asking for some extra help once or even twice a year seems like an extremely small inconvenience to bear. I suspect that most priests don’t like appealing for money anymore than you like to hear them ask. If I were to find anything tacky about the situation it would be that priests are put in that position in the first place. A general lack of giving is what prompts the yearly appeals. As Joanne McPortland reported in Aleteia, “The average share of income that U.S. Catholics give to the Church is a mere 1%. That’s the lowest percentage of giving of any major religious denomination in the United States. Fewer than 1 in 3 Americans who identify themselves as Catholic attend Mass on a ‘regular’ basis (defined as at least once a month), and of those regular attendees, only 30% give to the support of their parish.”
It is true that we receive mailers that ask for donations, do we need to be asked in church as well? What do you think?