The Springfield Diocese today announced a $1 million pledge to the Sisters of St. Joseph fundraising campaign, Support the Sisters.
In announcing the gift at a press event on the lawn of the Bishop’s residence, Bishop Mitchell T. Rozanski said “I hope with the announcement of this diocesan gift, others will now step forward to help these good and dedicated women, those who have given their lives in total service to our faith community, as they seek the funds necessary to provide for their sisters.”
Accepting the gift in the names of each of the Sisters was Sr. Maxyne Schneider, President of the Congregation. She said the gift is “deeply appreciated” and will help close a multi-million dollar financial gap.
“It will help to provide the basic necessities of life – food, clothing, shelter, transportation for our elder Sisters, so many of whom are here today, - and it will enable us to continue in service to the People of God in the Diocese. In this time when there is so much need among so many, we are deeply humbled by the generosity of this gift.” Sr. Maxyne said.
Campaign co-chair John Foley addressed the crowd, thanking those who have already donated and urging others to do the same. “It is our responsibility to help out,” Foley said of the Sisters financial needs.
Sheriff Michael Ashe, also a co-chair, thanked the Sisters for their “courageous leadership”. “Every day, you inspire me,” he said.
Three years ago, the Congregation of 217 women religious learned that they faced an enormous financial challenge. They took many prudent steps to reduce expenses, including selling their beloved Mont Marie campus in Holyoke.
Despite that effort, a multimillion dollar shortfall remained, and friends of the community stepped up to organize the Support the Sisters campaign.
The fundraising effort, launched in May, has had remarkable success so far, with many generous donations from individuals within the diocese. But a significant amount of money still needs to be raised to guarantee the care of the elderly Sisters through their remaining years.
Information about the campaign can be found at Time2Support.com.
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