CHARLOTTE — The Diocese of Charlotte has announced the dates for eight special collections for 2017. These annual collections fund vital ministries and help support our priests and religious who give generously of their lives in service to the Church.
The 2017 special collections and their dates are as follows:
— Jan. 14-15: Combined Mission Collection. This annual collection funds five separate initiatives: the Collection for the Church in Latin America, the Collection to Aid the Church in Central and Eastern Europe, the Catholic Home Missions Appeal, the United States Mission Collection, and the Solidarity Fund for the Church in Africa.
— April 15-16 (Easter Sunday). Seminary and Priests’ Continuing Education. The Seminarian Education Program, in which 24 men are currently enrolled, is primarily funded through the annual Diocesan Support Appeal, the Friend to Seminarians Program, and this second collection. The diocese also uses the funds from this collection to sponsor workshops and programs to help keep priests informed of developments in theology and pastoral practices.
— April 29-30: International/National Combined Collection. Donations received from this collection benefit five organizations: Catholic Relief Services, Collection for the Holy Land, Collection for the Works of the Holy Father (Peter’s Pence), The Catholic University of America, and the Catholic Communications Campaign.
— May 13-14: Trinity Dome Collection for the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C.
— Sept. 16-17: Priests’ Retirement and Benefits. This collection goes to support the Diocese of Charlotte’s 21 retired diocesan priests, 94 diocesan priests actively serving the faithful of western North Carolina, and 47 religious order priests from nine religious orders for whom retirement contributions will be made.
— Oct. 21-22: World Mission Sunday (Propagation of the Faith). This collection supports the work of the Church in its missions around the world.
— Nov. 18-19: Catholic Campaign for Human Development. This collection funds CCHD, founded by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops to help break the cycle of poverty by funding organizations that help people help themselves. With its mission of improving education, housing situations and local economic development, the CCHD continues to make a positive impact in communities nationwide. Twenty-five percent of the funds from the collection are put to use in the Charlotte diocese.
— Dec. 9-10: Religious Retirement. This appeal, coordinated by the National Religious Retirement Office, offers support for senior Catholic sisters, brothers and religious order priests whose communities lack sufficient retirement funding. Nationally, some 33,000 women and men religious past the age of 70 benefit.
— SueAnn Howell, senior reporter