Adult faith formation programs in local parishes, the Catholic schools in the Diocese of Marquette and Catholic Social Services of the U.P. are the main beneficiaries of the Legacy of Faith grants awarded and distributed for 2011-2012.
The grants come from the investment income generated by Legacy of Faith, the Endowment Foundation of the Diocese of Marquette.
Bishop Alexander Sample approved the distribution of $195,338 in grants, following recommendations from the Legacy of Faith Board of Directors.
In accordance with the endowment guidelines, half of the grant funds are available for Catholic schools, 30% for parish faith formation, 10% for Catholic Social Services of the U.P. and 10% for the Catholic Action Fund, the bishop’s discretionary fund to support new and emerging programs and ministries.
This year Bishop Sample placed an emphasis on adult faith formation and evangelization, with special emphasis on reaching out to those no longer participating fully in the life of the Church, as well as educational programs on the Holy Mass and liturgical formation.
One parish, Immaculate Conception Parish in Moran, has received its first ever Legacy of Faith grant.
The parish will use the grant for a team of adult parishioners to participate in a Roman Cursillo.
The Cursillo focuses on teaching participants to be effective leaders with a major emphasis on the participants taking what they learn back to their community.
The parish team intends to form an evangelization committee for the parish.
Bishop Sample also approved a $1,412 grant to the Diocesan Office of Faith Formation to administer a national, standardized test to assess the faith knowledge and attitudes of students in our Catholic schools. This test will assist in determining the effectiveness of the diocesan K-8 curriculum that all parishes, missions, and Catholic schools implemented in the fall of 2009.
The office also received a $19,900 grant for the development of a curriculum for high school faith formation.
The development and implementation of these curricula are part of Bishop Sample’s vision for the Diocese of Marquette.
Legacy of Faith distributed $121,010 in grants to the nine Catholic schools in the diocese, with each school receiving a $12,140 unrestricted grant.
The schools are also reaping the benefits of an $11,750 grant to share in the costs to continue the successful character education program called “K4J (Kids 4 Jesus) Virtue Program.”
The teaching staff and principals at all schools report that the program encourages better behavior at school and home and promotes good values in all students.
The diocesan schools are: Holy Name Catholic School in Escanaba, Bishop Baraga Catholic School in Iron Mountain, All Saints Catholic Academy in Ironwood, Sacred Heart School in L’Anse, St. Francis de Sales School in Manistique, Father Marquette Catholic School in Marquette, Menominee Catholic Central School in Menominee, Holy Spirit School in Norway, and St. Mary School in Sault Ste. Marie.
Catholic Social Services of the U.P. received a $24,203 grant to help its branch offices provide counseling assistance to clients who do not have insurance to pay for services.
The agency reports that the Legacy of Faith grant received last year provided for 300 therapy sessions for clients otherwise unable to pay for service.
Catholic Social Services offices are located in Marquette, Escanaba and Iron Mountain.
Legacy of Faith is the campaign to build a permanent endowment for the Diocese of Marquette for the purpose of preserving and fostering the Catholic faith for future generations.