Lisa Louis, Foundation Executive Director (3rd from right), with (l to r) Don Carone, Deacon Richard Brogdon, Kirsten Etnoyer, David DiLoreto, and Michele Knauer of Catholic Charities Counseling & Adoption Services
Lisa Louis, Foundation Executive Director (3rd from right), with (l to r) Don Carone, Deacon Richard Brogdon, Kirsten Etnoyer, David DiLoreto, and Michele Knauer of Catholic Charities Counseling & Adoption Services

The Catholic Foundation of Northwest Pennsylvania is pleased to announce that twenty (20) grants totaling $107,076 were awarded during its summer and fall 2021 grant cycles. These grants include those awarded through the Foundation’s first-ever Catholic Social Ministry grant opportunity which supports a wide variety of important programs in northwest Pennsylvania. The Foundation’s granting programs support departments of the Diocese of Erie, parishes, Catholic schools, and ministries so they will have the financial resources to serve and make a difference – now and in the future.

In 2021 the Foundation offered its first Catholic Social Ministry Grant competitive cycle. Through this process, the Foundation seeks to award grants to eligible ministries and projects that embrace and align with Catholic social teaching and are answering the Gospel call to respond to needs within the community. Six Catholic Social Ministry Grants were awarded totaling $39,000. In response to the $15,000 grant awarded to Catholic Charities Counseling and Adoption Services, interim director Deacon Dick Brogdon said, “Our goal here at Catholic Charities Counseling and Adoption Services is to come to the aid of the neediest in our community. This grant will help us reach out to those who need help but cannot afford it.” These grant funds will be used to support counseling services provided by the agency.

2022 St Elizabeth Center CSM Grant
Jim Martin, Development Director, presents grant check to Douglas Kennedy of Saint Elizabeth Center

Saint Elizabeth Center in Oil City received a grant to purchase food and hygiene items. By providing these basic necessities, Douglas Kennedy, director, stated in his application, "We hope to ease their burden and increase the quality of their lives." This work certainly exemplifies works of mercy in action.

A Catholic Social Ministry Grant was awarded to Saint Joseph Parish in Oil City to support a bus trip to the March for Life in Washington, DC. The participants of this annual event include many youth from the parish. In her grant application, Teresa Zlotnicki, describes the March for Life as "particularly important to the formation of our parish youth since it gives them a chance to bear witness to the gospel of life, engage in a social justice activity, and have their own beliefs strengthened by the experience of seeing thousands of peers from around the nation taking a stand for life, for marriage and the family."

2022 St Joseph Oil City CSM Grant
Fr. John Miller and Teresa Zlotnicki of Saint Joseph Parish receive grant check from Jim Martin, Development Director

Thirteen Education Grants totaling $60,188 were awarded for a variety of projects including lay ministry formation, parish renewal, faith formation programs, and exciting technology projects in parishes. Venango Region Catholic School was awarded a grant to purchase materials that will serve as visible reminders of their Catholic identity and mission as a Catholic school. These items will enhance the school’s faith formation impact.

VRC Slogo2

School principal, Katherine Chandley, wrote the following in her grant application. “Catholic identity is a major component of our mission at Venango Region Catholic School. We strive to not be a "charter school with a cross on the door", but rather a school that is rich in Catholic Tradition. Our hope is that anyone who walks through our doors will immediately understand our connection to our faith and know that we celebrate our traditions and teachings with fidelity.“

Additionally in the fall of 2021, the Catholic Foundation was happy to award a Faith Formation Grant to the Diocese of Erie Office of Faith Formation in support of the “Re-membering Our Sunday Story” diocesan initiative designed to assist parishes with welcoming parishioners back to Sunday Mass.

Faith Formation Staff
Mary Hickin, Jillian Zaczyk, Kate Wilson, Deacon Steve Washek, & Jessie Hubert of the Office of Faith Formation

We are pleased to announce the Catholic Foundation's 2022 grant cycles.

Spring Education Grant applications will be accepted January 31, 2022, through March 11, 2022.

Faith Formation Grant applications will be accepted February 14, 2022, through March 25, 2022.

Catholic Social Ministry Grant applications will be accepted June 20, 2022, through July 29, 2022.

Fall Education Grant applications will be accepted August 22, 2022, through September 30, 2022.

Be the Spark!

Competitive grants are made possible through the generosity of donors to the Education Endowment, Evangelization Endowment, and Catholic Charities Endowment. Donations in any amount to any of these endowments increases our capacity to award grants for creative and impactful projects and programs throughout northwest Pennsylvania today and for future generations.

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