| By Rachel Seidl |

On April 23rd, 2019, the Catholic Foundation of Southwest Iowa (CFSWIA) awarded 19 different Catholic parishes, schools, and organizations with a grant, totaling over $50,000 in grants awarded.  The CFSWIA partnered with Catholic Tuition Organization (CTO) to gather those that support both organizations to show how much they are appreciated. The event took place at the Catholic Pastoral Center in downtown Des Moines. Bishop Richard Pates addressed the crowd with insightful remarks, and Chris McCarville (CFSWIA) and Jeanne Wells (CTO) shared with the crowd how the organizations benefit the Diocese of Des Moines.

Grant awards this year range from $1,000 to $5,000 and will be used for initiatives including, technology for classrooms, faith formation materials, safety equipment, and much more. “To see the wide variety of needs and initiatives that are going on in different places throughout the diocese and to have an impact on those places is really special,” says Chris McCarville, Executive Director.

The CFSWIA’s mission is to promote a legacy of giving and support within the Diocese of Des Moines. The CFSWIA works with individual donors that want to create a lasting impact through planned giving and more, and Catholic entities that wish to create long-term financial stability for their communities. Now in the Grant Program’s 4th year, the CFSWIA has now granted over $200,000 to various entities within the Diocese of Des Moines.

This year, the nineteen grants were awarded to:

    • All Saints Parish, Des Moines – $2,320, funds will assist in purchasing audio/visual equipment to improve Religious Education program
    • Dowling Catholic High School, West Des Moines – $1,000, funds will assist in purchasing enhancements for Liturgical Celebrations within the school chapel
    • Emmaus House Spirituality Center, Des Moines – $1,550, funds will purchase a new computer and software to update administrative practices
    • Holy Trinity Catholic School, Des Moines – $3,000, funds will assist in purchasing various forms of flexible seating in STEM Lab
    • Our Lady of the Americas, Des Moines – $1,100, funds will assist in purchasing furniture for parish conference rooms
    • Sacred Heart Catholic School, West Des Moines – $3,000, funds will assist in purchasing various forms of flexible seating for 6th-8th grade classes to utilize
    • St. Albert Catholic Elementary School, Council Bluffs – $2,630, funds will assist in purchasing materials to expand the current STEAM Lab to include grades 2 and 3
    • St. Ambrose Cathedral, Des Moines – $3,300, due to language barriers among refugee students, funds will enhance audio and visual aspects of Religious Education by purchasing a television, audio/visual equipment, and a projector
    • St. Anthony Catholic School, Des Moines – $4,000, funds will purchase new computers for ¼ of teachers
    • St. Boniface Catholic Church, Waukee – $1,000, funds will assist in purchasing new software, removing the hard-copy registration process, to simplify online Religious Education registration, volunteer sign-ups, and more
    • St. Clare, Clarinda; Sacred Heart, Bedford; St. Joseph, Villisca – $3,000, funds will assist in purchasing new liturgical vestments that will be used at all three parishes; these vestments will be replacing vestments still being used from pre-Vatican II
    • St. Joseph Church, Des Moines – $2,000, funds will assist in purchasing a portable visual screen to be used by various parish groups
    • St. Malachy School, Creston – $2,400, funds will purchase new computers for ¼ of teachers
    • St. Mary of Nazareth Catholic Church, Des Moines – $3,750, funds will purchase a new design for the parish website to create a theme of discipleship
    • St. Michael’s Church, Harlan – $1,500, funds will assist in updating the phone system in the parish office to connect it to the school’s phone system
    • St. Patrick’s Church, Imogene – $2,470, funds will purchase audio/visual equipment to improve many forms of parish evangelization
    • St. Pius X School, Urbandale – $3,000, funds will assist in purchasing various forms of flexible seating across multiple grade levels
    • St. Thomas More Center, Panora – $3,980, funds will assist in updating safety equipment used at su­­mmer camp and year-round retreats, and purchase a new computer to better serve those who entrust their children to STMC year-round
    • The Veil Removed, West Des Moines – $5,000, funds will assist in completing the raising of funds to create, market, and distribute a film that’s idea came to the creator during the Eucharistic prayer of the Mass; the video will increase Eucharistic amazement, and following the release of the video, will provide materials for creating conversation and retreats based on the Eucharist

Pictured above are Bishop Pates (front, middle) and Chris McCarville (front, right) with our grant recipients.