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Diocese of Wilmington Annual Catholic Appeal — Pandemic no match for generosity of parishioners

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The traditional generosity of Catholics to the Diocese of Wilmington’s Annual Catholic Appeal is evident again this year despite the dramatic and unprecedented impact of COVID-19 on many families

On August 26, the diocesan Development Office reported that $3,922,661 from 9,307 donors have been pledged so far toward the Appeal’s goal of $4,871,000.

“The Annual Catholic Appeal is an opportunity for each of us to unite as a Catholic community and to answer the needs of those most vulnerable – the hungry, the homeless, the unemployed, the distressed, the unchurched, our children and our elderly,” said Development Director, Deborah Fols. “Because of the generosity of donors, those in need who come to the Church searching for Christ’s love and protection will receive assistance.”

Fols noted that “Seeing Christ in the Face of Others,” the theme of the 2020 Appeal campaign, is a recognition of our Christian call to love our neighbors as ourselves. The theme also emphasizes Pope Francis’ reminder that “the poor save us because they enable us to encounter the face of Christ.”

Dollars raised through the Annual Catholic Appeal support more than 30 pastoral, educational and social services throughout Delaware and the Eastern Shore of Maryland such as Basic Needs, Food Assistance, Cultural Ministries, Religious Education, Seton Center, Bayard House, and Catholic Schools to name a few. Appeal contributions provide the necessary resources to operate diocesan programs and essential services that parishes cannot deliver on their own.

Pledges to the 2020 Appeal are currently below those of last year by approximately $1,022,000. However, “considering the economic effects the pandemic has had on so many people, the results of the campaign are gratifying,” Fols said.

This year’s collection rate for the Appeal is favorable with nearly 85 percent of the dollars pledged having already been received. Monthly reminders will continue to be mailed through January, offering donors sufficient time to complete their pledge prior to the campaign’s close.