New Beginnings Capital Campaign
For nearly 60 years, St. Monica Parish has been a multicultural community, united in One Body, One Mission. It is here that so many have experienced the love of Jesus Christ and God’s abundant blessings in their lives. When our church was first envisioned, there were 222 families with many dreams and desires for what the building would be. When that number had grown to 1,400 families in 1992, we built a larger sanctuary and created a new vision for what we wanted our worship space to be. Today, with more than 3,500 registered families, we are still blessed with a beautiful church, but have not yet completed everything in that original vision. Plans to complete the vision were under development prior to the fire in our narthex on September 9, 2015. We now have the opportunity to complete both the necessary repairs from the fire and the desired renovations.
Progress to Date
- A Letter from Father ToddOpen or Close
Dear Friends in Christ:
These are exciting times here at St. Monica. While the fire of September 9, 2015 was a terrible shock for our parish, it is not every day that a parish community has an opportunity to rebuild and renew its church building as a sign of our faith and love for God and one another for generations to come.
St. Monica has undergone three parish building projects since its beginning in 1956, and each one has made our parish more dynamic and better able to serve our parishioners and community. However, I have been told by members of each building era that "there were some things we just never got a chance to do or to finish."
During this rebuilding process, while we are already out of our church, we have the opportunity to realize the vision of what was originally planned and to address other needs that have arisen since that time.
Rebuilding our narthex and realizing the completion of our "new" church and other enhancements to our parish will not come without sacrifice. Throughout the history of our parish, the people of St. Monica have always been generous stewards, contributing time, talent and treasure. We are con dent that these projects will be met with the same degree of commitment and participation.
To address these projects we have embarked upon a campaign entitled New Beginnings. This capital campaign will allow the parish to raise the necessary funds to fulfill the vision. It will provide every parishioner of St. Monica with the opportunity to make an investment in the future of our vibrant and growing faith community, and to show appreciation for the great love and generous blessings that God has bestowed upon us through this wonderful parish family. I thank you and ask you to join me in this New Beginning for St. Monica Parish.
In Christ's Love,
Reverend Todd Goodson Pastor
- Capital Campaign BrochureOpen or Close
- Frequently Asked Questions About Rebuilding/RenovationOpen or Close
Frequently Asked Questions About Rebuilding and Renovating St. Monica
When do we expect to be back in the church?
Why is it taking so long for the rebuilding to begin?
Although the renovation committee has been at work for more than a year, the September fire created administrative challenges requiring us to obtain two separate sets of drawings and estimates – one to determine the cost of rebuilding the narthex exactly as it was (for insurance recovery estimates) and again to incorporate the improvements we planned to make to our church and narthex.
In addition to rebuilding from the fire, what are the major changes that will be taking place in the rebuilding and renovation project?
- Moving the Blessed Sacrament Chapel into the Sanctuary
St. Monica Church is designed to emphasize community gathered around the Eucharist. Both the celebration of the Eucharist and the Eucharist species are central to the Catholic Christian life. It is the true presence of Christ, Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity. Therefore, we have chosen to make this prayerful space more prominent and visible in our church. After much discussion, and at the advice of the Archdiocese Office of Art and Church Architecture, it was decided to create a chapel for the Eucharist behind the sanctuary. This will be the most significant and noticeable change in our renovation.
- Improving Accessibility
We hope to increase the size of the altar and build a ramp leading up to it to make the altar more accessible. In addition, we will add a chair rail to the ambulatory (side aisles).
- Lighting Improvements
Lighting is one of the greatest tools we have to create beautiful, engaging worship spaces. It has long been commented that our lighting is adequate but perhaps not the ideal look for our Church. Our plan is to remove the current lighting grid and replace it with lighting more appropriate for a place of worship. Additionally we will use complementary lighting in the Church, Narthex, and Daily Mass Chapel. We are going to all LED lighting sources. LED lighting is a low energy high output light source with a high quality of light. Their lamp lives are very long relative to other lighting types and so they will require much less maintenance.
- The Baptismal Font
Our renovation project actually began with discussion of the font. Over time, the copper and the wood of the font began to wear, and it was beginning to come apart in places. Additionally, over time wood and water are not a great combination. We have designed a new one that will have a small and a large font and be made of a nice stone. It is in the shape of an Octagon to represent the eighth day in which Jesus rose from the dead. It will be larger and used for both infant and adult immersion baptisms. In addition, we will be increasing the size of the narthex itself.
- Sacred Art
Visual Art has long been a tool to help worshipers meditate on the mystery of God and as an important aid to prayer and praise. There are a few places where we wish to replace or add sacred art. We are working with the corpus of our old crucifix to create a new larger one that will hang above the altar. Additionally, we are looking for Stations of the Cross that will be located in the same area but be larger and have stronger images for devotion. Finally, in our devotional niches (the two back corners of the Church) we would like an image of the Holy family in one corner and an image of our patroness St. Monica and her son St. Augustine in the other. We believe that family life is important, and these images honor family as well as Christ and our patroness.
What changes are being made to fireproof the renovated facility?
We will be extending the firewall between the narthex and parish offices and installing a sprinkler system in the church and narthex.
Are we adding additional capacity?
Our seating capacity will remain about the same, at approximately 780 persons.
Will we keep the same pews?
We will be getting new pews in the church once construction is complete. The cost to remove, clean, repair, store, and re-install the pews was actually $5,000 greater than the cost to purchase new pews.
What will we do with the old pews?
We are open to your suggestions on that!
Why do we need a larger narthex?
Functionally, a larger Narthex allows for parishioners to meet and greet both before and after Mass without having to stand outside in the elements. This helps to build a sense of family and community. The expanded Narthex will also function as overflow space for Holy Days of Obligation. The glass doors and speakers will allow all to see and hear the Mass from the Narthex. We will also be creating a new welcome and information center for visitors to learn about our church and all parishioners to learn more about our parish ministries and programs.
What will we do with the current Blessed Sacrament Chapel?
Our Lady of Guadalupe is the patroness of the Americas and so, while she is important particularly to the Mexican people, she is actually the patroness of North and South America and a symbol of devotion for all of us. We will create a chapel of devotion for her in the former Blessed Sacrament chapel complete with place for candles (to be used carefully) and flowers for devotion.
Who is making the decisions on the design?
Staff and volunteers have been meeting for two years to study and discuss necessary maintenance and desired renovations to our church facility. The "study" part has included getting familiar with our church facility and its current and future needs, as well as reviewing Liturgical documents governing the building or renovation of churches. This study group has worked with a liturgical design consultant from St. Meinrad, Brother Martin Erspamer, OSB. The design committee has submitted their recommendations. Fr. Todd and the Archdiocesan Office of Church Art & Architecture have the final approval.
Who is our architect?
A liturgical design consultant from St. Meinrad, Brother Martin Erspamer, OSB, worked closely with our parish design committee. The architect for our rebuild and renovation is Dave Allen of Cox Allen Architects in Louisville. The Archdiocese has extended RFPs to four Indianapolis-based construction companies.
- Moving the Blessed Sacrament Chapel into the Sanctuary
- Frequently Asked Questions About the Capital CampaignOpen or Close
How much money must be raised?
$ 1.4 million.
What happens if we don’t raise the $1.4 million?
We believe given the size and giving history of our parish, we can raise $1.4 million. However, if the total amount needed is not raised, we will scale back on the items currently in our plan. Rebuilding the baptismal font and relocating the tabernacle are our first priorities. Cuts will be made in the areas of lighting and sacred art if necessary. It is in the best interest of our parish to complete the rebuilding and renovation of St. Monica narthex and church without incurring debt.
How much cash must be raised before construction can begin?
Answer to come
Who will be asked to support our capital campaign?
First we are asking everyone to offer prayers of thanksgiving for the blessings God has provided to St. Monica and to also pray for the success of the capital campaign. In addition, every registered household at St. Monica, along with families in our school and Sunday School programs will be asked to assist in the rebuilding and renovation of St. Monica Church.
Can you designate your donation toward a particular item or in memory of a loved one?
Some parishioners have already made donations in remembrance of a loved one. You may request that your donation be used to support a specific area or item in the church, however, please remember that if we do not raise the full $1.4 million needed to make all planned repairs and renovations, priority will be given to the baptismal font and tabernacle. We will not be publishing the name or amounts given by specific donors or placing plaques on items in the church.
Why are we asking for pledges?
While we will happily accept a one-time gift, we are asking for pledges because a pledge allows a family to make a larger contribution over a longer period of time.
Pledging allows parishioners to give what they truly believe to be a thoughtful, generous, and proportionate gift over an 18-month period rather than just what can be spared at the moment. We are grateful for all contributions, whether they are pledges or one-time gifts. Our most important goal is 100% participation from all St. Monica parishioners!
Why are donors asked to sign pledge cards?
Parishioners are asked to sign a pledge card so that the gift may be appropriately acknowledged and documented, enabling the parish to send payment reminders. Additionally, it will also help the parish get a snapshot of the overall progress made toward the campaign goal, so it can plan its finances as pledge payments are received.
By when are pledges due?
Pledges are due by June 30, 2016; funds must be collected by December 31, 2017.
By when are payments due?
All funds must be collected by December 31, 2017
Can trust and estate-type gifts be made to the New Beginnings Capital Campaign?
Offers of trust or estate-type gifts will be considered on an individual basis. Because the campaign can benefit best from immediate funding, gifts of cash, securities or other easily liquidated property are preferred. Campaign volunteers are not trained to discuss the details of planned gifts, so if you would like assistance in this area, please contact Melanie Johnson at the Archdiocese Office of Stewardship at 317-236-1459 or . Melanie can help you initiate a stock gift or assist you with broker instructions or questions.
Are gifts to this campaign tax deductible?
Yes. Since St. Monica is a 501(c)3 Organization, gifts to the New Beginnings Capital Campaign are tax deductible, to the fullest extent allowed by law. Contributions of stock are also a valuable way to make contributions to the capital campaign. If you would like assistance initiating a stock gift or with broker instructions, please contact Melanie Johnson at the Archdiocese Office of Stewardship at 317-236-1459 or . Contact your tax advisor for more information.
How much should I give?
Each family and person must give prayerful consideration to their own circumstances and determine how much they can sacrifice. Some can do more; some can do less. We ask that everyone give what they can. Rest assured that every gift is appreciated and that no gift is too small. To date, gifts have ranged from a few hundred or less, into the tens of thousands. Do not let the size of a gift prevent you from making a pledge.
Do I have to make a down payment?
We are asking you to consider making a 20% down payment with your pledge, although it is not a requirement. Make your pledge as soon as you can; payments can begin afterward. Down payments will allow the construction to start sooner.
If I make a pledge, am I legally bound?
While a pledge is not legally binding; it is merely a statement of your intentions. However, it is critical to our rebuilding effort that we accurately forecast the funds we will have available to start construction. Therefore, pledges should be thought out carefully and prayerfully.
Is my pledge in addition to my Sunday collection contribution?
Yes. The money collected for this campaign will be used strictly to address the items outlined in the campaign information to rebuild and renovate our church and narthex. The weekly offertory addresses the operational needs of our parish. If we stop contributing to that our parish will ultimately suffer. This contribution is above and beyond anything you are currently doing for St. Monica parish.
How will individual financial commitments be collected?
Individual pledges and initial payments can be made online via the parish website or with the pledge card and envelope included in your capital campaign mailing. Reminders will be issued monthly or quarterly, depending upon the donor’s preferred schedule, with return envelopes for convenience. Electronic Fund Transfers and credit card payments are also accepted and will be made through the parish website. Visit: www.StMonicaIndy.org
Can I set up my own payment schedule?
Yes, you are welcome to start your pledge payments as soon as you would like, using a monthly or quarterly option. We would be happy to work with you to set up a schedule that is more appropriate for you and your situation.
How do I send my payments?
For accounting purposes and to ensure that your pledge payments are appropriately acknowledged and receipted, you are asked to make pledge payments in the designated capital campaign envelopes enclosed in this mailing or in your monthly/quarterly statement. Please use only these specially marked capital campaign envelopes to make your pledge payments. Do not use your weekly collection envelope.
How will I know how much has been pledged?
Each week the monies pledged and the monies collected will be published in the parish bulletin and on the parish website.
I did not receive a New Beginnings Capital Campaign Package in the mail. How can I obtain a package?
You may call the Parish Office at 317-253-2193 and ask that a pledge package be mailed to you or you can pick one up at the Parish office. Please be sure to inform the Parish office of your current address.
What if I don’t have money to give?
Please pray for our campaign. We would like every parish family to pray and consider and give something, no matter how small an amount. Every gift is appreciated. However, we also welcome non-financial gifts of prayer, time, and talent. Please contact Mel Ullrich at to share your gifts with our parish.
Can we organize fundraising events?
We absolutely encourage ministries, small church communities, and other parishioner-run groups to hold their own fundraisers and make a donation in their group’s name. While we do not have the staff to support each individual fundraising event, we will certainly do our best to promote your fundraising effort in the parish bulletin, on the parish website, and Facebook page. Simply email your information to in advance.
How much is insurance going to pay?
We are still waiting on this information.
Why do we need to raise the money in 18 months?
The campaign will run for 18 months due to the immediate need to repair the narthex and the shared sense of urgency to get back into our church. It is in the best interest of our parish to complete these projects without incurring debt.
Who should I contact if I have additional questions?
Chances are if you have a specific question, others may be wondering, too. Please email your questions to , and we will do our best to get your questions answered quickly!
- Make a PledgeOpen or Close
How to Pledge your Support
St. Monica Parish would like to raise $1.4 million through the efforts of this campaign. Every member of our community is integral to our success in reaching this goal. We ask that you prayerfully consider how your generosity can reflect your gratitude for the gifts that God has given you. We know that even a small pledge will be a challenge for some of our parish households, therefore, it is vital to the success of our campaign that those who are able to make larger pledges do so. This campaign will need to receive gifts of all sizes in order to be successful.
The chart below demonstrates how your contribution can be spread out over 18 months. Please review the payment options carefully and determine a pledge amount that fits your family’s financial situation. All contributions to the campaign are fully tax deductible for those who itemize their deductions. Pledges are not legally binding, but rather an indication of your intent to donate.
How to Make your Gift
PLEDGES VIA CASH OR CHECK
Simply complete your pledge card by selecting the amount of your pledge and down payment. Make sure to select your method of payment (check, credit card) and frequency of payment, (one-time, monthly, or quarterly). Please make checks payable to St. Monica Church Capital Campaign.
You will be mailed payment reminders and special payment envelopes in accordance with the payment plan you choose. Once completed, please return your pledge card in the weekly collection, bring it by the parish office, or return it in the mail.
Go to www.StMonicaIndy.org and click on “ONLINE GIVING” button at the top of the webpage. You can choose to create an account or make a one-time donation by clicking on the “Quick Give” link located in the lower right corner of the page. Please be sure to select “New Beginnings Capital Campaign” under the “Gift Information” tab. Please contact the parish office if you need assistance with online giving.
GIFTS OF STOCK
You might want to consider making a gift of appreciated stock rather than a cash donation because a gift of appreciated property often provides increased tax benefits. Donors may use their own broker in coordination with the Archdiocese to transfer and sell stock. The Archdiocese uses a single brokerage account to streamline the process and ensure an IRS-approved acknowledgement. For assistance initiating a stock gift, please contact Melanie Johnson at the Archdiocese Office of Stewardship at mjohnson@ archindy.org or 317-236-1459. Contact your tax advisor for more information.
Memorials are special ways of honoring the people we love, whether they are living or deceased and will serve as a lasting tribute to honor the sacrifices our parishioners generously made. Memorial contributions of $5,000 or more will be recognized with a special gift for your home to honor the memory of your loved one. Please contact the parish office to make your memorial gift.
- St. Monica Prayer for our New ChurchOpen or Close
at this time in the life of
our Parish of St. Monica,
we turn to you with grateful hearts for
what we have and with great hope
for what is yet to be.
Bless us with a sense of unity,
a spirit of cooperation
and a generous heart
as we face the responsibilities and
challenges of this Parish undertaking.
We know there is much to do.
We believe our goals are rooted
in your Word and in your Work.
Please guide us, strengthen us,
and bless us with Your Presence,
now and through the years to come.
In Jesus’ Name we pray,