One of the important responsibilities of a pastor is the regular sharing of the financial state of the parish with the parishioners. In the last five plus years, we have tried our best to be transparent and upfront with the state of our parish and each of its schools. This year, I am happy to report that the state of the parish is very good!
In the last fiscal year, there were two significant events that has allowed me to make the positive statement. First, you responded so generously to the call for increased giving. The steady and sustained increase has allowed us to do some necessary repairs at both churches. We also brought onboard a new Director of Music Ministries who has already made a huge, positive impact. We also have helped students in our schools with financial troubles. Your generosity has made a difference.
The second significant event was the sale of the Eighth Street Field to North Wildwood. Working with the late Mayor Bill Henfey to accomplish this sale was a privilege and honor. The sale netted nearly 2.9 million dollars. When this community saved Wildwood Catholic, we agreed that proceeds from the sale would pay off debts through June 30, 2010. You gave a gift of $1,130,450 to the high school to pay the debt that crippled the high school five years ago. With good stewardship, and a forward vision, I pray the school is vibrant for many more years!
The parish has about $1.9 million in savings that is secured in the diocesan revolving fund (savings and loan). Our bills are current and expenses have been trimmed. You will notice that most expense categories are showing we spent less than budgeted. It should be noted the income and expenses surrounding the sale of the property were fluid because of settlement timing issues.
Please look over the attached report. We wanted to make it as easy to read and understand as possible. This year, you are noticing music ministry projects at both churches including the relocation of the instruments at Assumption, and repairs to the instruments. At Saint Ann, new concrete plaza and handrails in the front are being completed. There are serious roof issues that will need to be addressed.
Once again, on behalf of the priests and whole pastoral team, I am grateful to a hardworking Finance Council that meets regularly. Most of all, we are grateful for your many sacrifices of time, talent and treasure that make Notre Dame de la Mer Parish and its schools a beacon of Christ’s light in a world challenged with discord. Each gift, big and small, indeed makes a difference as the parish lives out its mission.
Thank you! Good’s Blessings,
Fr. Michael Field