Who would have ever thought that in one year the number of Catholic elementary schools in the Archdiocese of Louisville would grow from 37 to 40, or that both Catholic elementary and high school enrollments would rise from the previous year? Or that our general revenues would rocket to nearly $1.2 million – a 50% increase over last year’s record – or that the net proceeds from our two signature events would cross the $1 million mark for the first time in our history.
Or even more importantly, who would have known how dramatically we could all expand the mission of the Catholic Education Foundation in such a short time? Last fall, together with our funding partners, we awarded an astonishing $5.8 million in tuition assistance to 2,700 elementary students and their families, roaring past last year’s record of $5.2 million that was granted to 2,400 students. In fact, we now support double the number of students we helped just three years ago. WOW!!! How blessed we are because of all of you!
As we reflect on such a God-blessed year here at the Foundation and the ever-growing momentum behind Catholic education in central Kentucky, I keep coming back to a particular prospective donor meeting in which I was asked, “Why would anyone send their child to a Catholic school? Can’t kids learn to read, write and do arithmetic in a public school?”
And I said to him, “Well, that’s easy. It’s the Gospel message! No matter the subject, our Catholic school kids learn that service to others is the best definition of their own worth, that sacrifice is in fact its own reward, that giving back is an obligation – not an option. And when they hear this message every day, in the classroom and at Mass, they become greater in life, career, family and community than they ever thought possible. I should know. I’m a Catholic school kid.