ShareLife forecast looking strong

  • October 21, 2021

For the second straight year Toronto Catholics are demonstrating their fidelity to the ShareLife parish campaign despite the continued economic uncertainty of these pandemic times.

With two of three ShareLife Sunday weekends in the books on behalf of the archdiocese’s charitable fundraising arm, more than $9.5 million of the $13.8 million goal — equaling 69 per cent — has been officially collected.

The key word is official. ShareLife executive director Arthur Peters said 115 of archdiocese’s 225 parishes — barely over half — have reported their totals from the second collection the weekend of Oct. 2 and 3. A more accurate sense of where the campaign stands is expected just before the final collection weekend of Oct. 30-31.

Peters believes the 2021 financial drive to support more than 40 different Catholic social service agencies could eclipse last year, when the final haul of $11.68 million fell over $2 million short of the same $13.8 million benchmark — not surprising considering the calamitous circumstances of the unprecedented pandemic.

The campaign is poised to enjoy a roaring finish thanks to an anonymous donor pledging to match donations up to $750,000. ShareLife announced the matching gift opportunity on Oct. 15 and it will remain active until Nov. 15.

“This will help to encourage parishioners to support the ShareLife campaign on our final collection weekend,” said Peters.

“We also remind parishioners of the needs of the agencies, and invite them to support their work with a sacrificial gift to ShareLife.”

A number of parishes are already seeing increased gifts from parishioners this year, said Peters.

“To date, 64 parishes have exceeded the amount raised in 2020, and 19 have exceeded their suggested parish goal,” he said. “These are positive signs that, in our COVID-19 environment with reduced capacity at parishes, parishioners recognize the important work that our agencies are doing to support those needing help in these difficult times.

“We are thankful for the generosity that our parishioners continue to show toward ShareLife.”

Children, seniors, young parents, individuals with special needs, immigrants and refugees, and inhabitants of Third World countries are among the many groups that benefit from ShareLife funding.

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