As we begin our eighth year of ministry, it is remarkable to see just how much has happened in the American National Catholic Church (ANCC). This contemporary expression of Catholicism that began as a simple idea has grown into an expanding number of parishes, devoted seminarians who long to serve the people of God, authentic ministries that touch the lives of countless souls, and a welcome and opening voice that the world so desperately needs. Perhaps most astonishing is how much has been done with virtually no resources.
We have been blessed. We have had clergy who not only do not collect a salary, but they pay out of pocket for the planting of parishes. We have had donors who have paid for the development of our website and some of our media outreach efforts. Above all we have had the prayers of so many individuals that provide value beyond measure.
The Church has been sustained by these prayers. They are prayers from a young, gay girl in the South who clings to her faith but feels unwelcome at the churches in her community. They are the prayers of a middle-aged divorced man who found a chance to start anew with a relationship that has brought so much fulfillment to his life, only to be told he is not welcome to receive Our Lord in the Eucharist. They are the prayers of a priest who recalls with mixed emotions the amazing joy he felt the first time he baptized a baby, but knows in his heart that God called him to marriage as well. These people find the ANCC, they are inspired, they discover new hope, and they need us. They need us but we are young and limited.
That’s why we need you.
We humbly invite you to help. We have never solicited contributions before. The People of God have always been so generous that things just seemed to happen. But we find ourselves with need for assistance in funding the formation of new priests, the founding of new parishes, and the expansion of our media outreach efforts. People are asking, and we are unable to meet the demand.
Perhaps you can help us.
We are looking for individuals who will support us as sustaining contributors to what we call The Cornerstone Campaign. The inspiration for the name comes from Psalm 118, where we hear that “The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone.” There are so many who have felt rejected from the Church, and we hope they will reclaim their place of honor among God’s children by becoming a cornerstone. We hope that you might consider giving us $1 each day to bring the message of Christ’s radical, welcoming love to all people. We recognize these contributors with a special ANCC lapel pin, a gift of appreciation from Presiding Bishop George Lucey. We hope you can look upon it and know you are a part of something larger, and that you are helping to spread the Gospel to all people.
It’s easy to help. Simply click on this link.
Near or far, you can help. Through your generous contribution and the support of your prayers, the ANCC has become what it is because of you, and it needs your continuing support to achieve its full potential.
Fr. Matthew Bailey, FCM, ANCC Vicar General
St. Joseph of Arimathea ANCC (New Haven, CT)