Capital Campaign Feedback
I, and several other parishioner-volunteers, have been meeting with a number of parishioners one-on-one over the past few weeks in light of the capital campaign. It has been a very positive experience for me and for the parishioner-volunteers as well. I want to provide some insights from the feedback we have received:
The positive comments received have been that the ideas behind the “Master Plan” make sense. Let’s fix what must be fixed. Any new debt is not seen as a viable financial strategy for the parish so we will “use a dollar when we get a dollar.” Much information was solicited from the parishioners; they felt included. A lot of information was also shared with the parish over the past year.
In terms of specifics, most people like the idea of the cafeteria renovation and are fine with the renovation of the youth room (although the enthusiasm is noticeably cooler than the great push I experienced in the beginning of the development of the “Master Plan.”)
In terms of Areas of Concern/Things to Ponder/Items to Adjust:
- Although the significant information solicited from parishioners and provided to parishioners was done over the course of an entire year, it “felt” that this was done within in a relatively short time frame. Much was also done during the summer when some people were away. Thus, some oversight into what exactly is being planned, and when, has been lost.
- Considering this is the 4th St. Monica capital campaign within a relatively brief time frame, there is a sense of “campaign fatigue.”
- Anything short of the $2.5 million “goal” will not be seen as a failure but merely the good people of St. Monica saying what we, as a parish, can afford.
- Many people have asked about the organ. When presented as part of a 5-part “acoustics plan” (organ + new “Liturgy of the Word” sound system + relocation of the choir area + new flooring + sound tuning), I have encountered little, if any, resistance. Most seem OK with the idea that the organ will be purchased with funding already in place.
- People say fellowship and welcoming is important and are not against some kind of new welcome/fellowship area but, oddly, are cooler to the idea of “building something” to actually accomplish that idea. (6) Concerns about the condition of the roofs over the gym and church were also mentioned.
What’s Do We Do Next? The “Master Plan” contains 72 specific items to be addressed. The costs of all of these items (developed by Remington Group Consultants and GKO Architects in consultation with the parish Finance Council and Facilities Committee) add up to the $2.5 million campaign goal. Over the next 5 years, the completion of these 72 items will be “synced” with funds received from the capital campaign as they come in. With close to $800K in reserves, the Finance Council recommended applying some money from reserves to address the 46 “top priority” maintenance and repair items over the next 12 months. These include:
- HVAC duct work, leaking pipes and fittings,
- Replace/repair church doors and replacement of broken locks,
- Repair/replace outdoor rain spouts and drains,
- Campus-wide concrete work,
- Stabilize sinking rectory porch/entrance way,
- Ugrade parish software systems and rebuild parish website,
- Miscellaneous repairs to the old school. This amounts to $228,500, which would leave $2,271,500 left to do in the Master Plan.
Let me address the question, “What comes next after the initial work is complete?”
The $2.5M goal includes 72 specific items to be addressed over 5 years. These were allocated among the following priorities:
- Family and Youth, Welcoming and Fellowship ($860,000);
- Service, Parish Outreach and Pastoral Outreach ($100,000);
- Comfort and Safety ($290,000);
- Facilities and Building Repair ($409,400);
- Beauty and Church Aesthetics ($134,000);
- Liturgy/Music/Acoustics ($452,000);
- Parish Support and Organization ($265,000).
This list reflects what we need to do and what the parish indicated they would like to do. What we will actually do is directly tied in with the success of the capital campaign.
Having chosen, and funded, the initial 46 “priority” items, 26 items then remain. Although fewer in number, the remaining 26 articles are the “big ticket” items. They include, for example:
- Upgrade/Renovate Youth Room, Hagenbach Room and Cafeteria ($230K);
- Salary/Benefit Package for new Parish & Pastoral Outreach Ministry ($100K);
- Remaining HVAC Work ($210K);
- Sound, Lighting and Acoustical Modifications ($260K);
- Roof Work ($130K);
- Welcome/Information Center ($625K);
- Rectory Repair and Renovation ($215K).
Once the Capital Campaign is over and we have good data on what we can expect from pledges, a select team, consisting of members of the Parish Pastoral Council, the Parish Finance Council, members of the Facilities Committee, staff and select parishioners, will complete the following tasks:
- Look at, and re-prioritize (actually “rank”) the 26 remaining Master Plan items according to the information received from you – the parishioners – based on your input during the “feasibility study.”
- Once we have ranked the items from 1 to 26, along with their associated cost figures, we can do a “purchase plan” according to different capital campaign thresholds (In other words, “What can we do if we only get $2.3M?” What do we do if we get only $1.9M?” and so on..).
- Having already completed and paid for Year 1 (“priority”) activities, we will then re-sync the remaining “Master Plan” items to be completed – to the remaining 4-year, capital campaign cash flow potential.
- Finally this will be communicated to the parish using are various media.
Let me reemphasize that these “Master Plan” figures were developed by Remington Group Consultants and GKO Architects in consultation with the Parish Finance Council, Pastoral Council and the Facilities Committee. My hope is that these details help to shed some light on – and answer questions concerning – the plan moving forward.
This is certainly exciting stuff and I ask you for your continued prayer, and your support, for the future of St. Monica Parish.