Sowing Seeds for Faith and Growth - Catholic Rural Life

Sowing Seeds for Faith and Growth

“As Catholic Rural Life approaches 100 years of serving rural communities throughout the country, we have our sights set to continue making an even greater impact in the decades and century to come.”

For 100 years, the vision planted in Archbishop Edwin V. O’Hara’s heart to help Catholic rural life thrive continues to bear fruit. While rural America’s social, economic and religious struggles have changed over the last century, Catholic Rural Life’s (CRL) ministry remains vital. 

In preparation of our 100th anniversary, CRL has created a five-year sustainability plan to support our mission. The Sowing Seeds of Faith and Growth Comprehensive Campaign will expand and enhance our two core initiatives – the Thrive in Rural Ministry program to help rural pastors thrive in their ministry, and Chapter programs to train and develop Catholic lay leaders to build, celebrate and promote Catholic community. 

Sowing bountifully, we reap bountifully (2 Cor. 9:6).


  • Train 400 additional priests through the Thriving in Rural Ministry Retreat program over the next five years.
    • They will serve in over 1,000 parishes across rural America, reaching over 200,000 Catholics. 
  • Increase rural chapters to 60 nationwide. Achieving chapter expansion goals means
    • Thousands more of America’s 10 million rural Catholics can work toward a common goal of a thriving Catholic life.  
    • Doubles program support of chapter-based educational and social programs and conferences. 
  • Increase program capacity by adding needed staff members over the next three years

Campaign Goal: $5 Million over next 5 years

Campaign Update: Our campaign is at $2,727,200 pledged from just 53 gifts!

Ways To Give

Pledges are commitments made in good faith. Payments can be made with check, cash or by
credit card or automatic withdrawal from bank accounts through our online giving system.
Proceeds from grain, crops, livestock and transfer of land.
Charitable gifts of stocks, bonds or mutual funds can have an immediate impact on our
campaign and offer special tax advantages for you.
Matching gifts can double or triple the size of your contribution. Many
companies match charitable gifts made by their employees, retirees or board members.
Planned gifts – including trust and estate gifts – are accepted. While our primary needs require
immediate funding, if a donor offers a planned gift, we will accept all deferred gifts. Gifts from
donor advised funds and private foundations are also welcome. Such gifts can allow for full
advantage of tax laws and enable you to accomplish your financial and charitable goals:
● Include a gift in your will or in your living trust.
● Leave a gift of life insurance naming Catholic Rural Life as the beneficiary or make CRL
the policy owner so that premium payments made through Catholic Rural Life become
tax deductible charitable gifts.
● Give real estate. Vacation homes and business properties make good charitable
● Name Catholic Rural Life as a beneficiary of your IRA, 401(k) or pension plan.
● Create a charitable trust and gift annuity.
● Make a Qualified Charitable Distribution


When you give to Catholic Rural Life your gift helps build the church community in daily rural life.

Yes, although most donors are likely to leave their gifts unrestricted. Unrestricted gifts allow us to provide immediate funding of our highest priority projects.

Through this effort, we invite you to pledge beyond your regular giving. We ask you not to diminish your current giving, rather, to consider a 3-year pledge above it. Your generosity will allow us to expand and enhance Catholic Rural Life’s ministry nationwide, serving a greater number of rural communities.

A pledge to support the Sowing Seeds for Faith and Growth Comprehensive Campaign is not
legally binding. Our hope is that you make a commitment that you consider to be meaningful campaign and offer special tax advantages for you.

Yes. Catholic Rural Life is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization by IRS regulation, and, therefore, all gifts to the organization are fully deductible. If you have specific questions regarding tax deductibility, please contact your attorney or tax advisor.

Of course. Different payment amounts and options are available on the pledge cards. You may choose your own payment plan and start date. Our goal is to be as donor friendly as possible.

“Catholic Rural Life brings the spiritually of God, the interconnectedness of nature and animals beautifully orchestrated in a perfect and divine way. Like a piece of artwork, when you stop and look at it, you know this is from God, who creates beauty around us.” 

– Adam and Mary Barrett, Farmers, St. Isidore’s Farms

“Catholic Rural Life is a perfect merger of my faith and love of agriculture. I grew up farming and have spent my entire career in agribusiness, so I recognize how critical our rural priests and farm families are to our world. I want everyone to understand where their food comes from and our rural families to know they are appreciated and supported”. 

– Mike Etzel, COE, Cargill 

Questions? Ready to give?

Make a pledge today! Contact CRL’s Director of Development, Kate Gapp for more information
or to make your pledge now. Your gift will make a great impact on rural Catholic life in our country!

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