Before the week starts, I spend a moment looking for which saint, pope, church document can help me become a better fundraiser.
Call it “monk mode.”
Basically, I hunker down and try to get my thinking straight, so I’m ready to be looking for donors and asking them for donations.
This week, I came across Saint Francis de Sales and his incredible book, Introduction to the Devout Life. (digital version / print version)
You’d be surprised… he has a section on money and asking for donations! Check it out:
I completed a Masters in Theology a few years ago, and my thesis analyzed Saint Alphonsus de Liguori’s connection between the sacraments of Communion and Confession.
All that research led me to one of Saint Alphonsus’ greatest works, Uniformity with God’s Will.
If you don’t have a copy or read it yet, I highly recommend doing so. (digital version / print version)
Anyway, in this masterpiece, I found three pieces of advice on… drum roll…
Yes, this Doctor of the Church has wisdom for us when it comes to asking for donations. Check it out:
Over the past few weeks leading up to Lent (yes, Lent starts next week), I’ve been sharing with you how saints, popes, and councils give us advice as Catholics on how to fundraise…
This week is no exception.
Let’s talk about Saint John Chrysostom.
His name in Greek means “golden-mouthed.” With a nickname as incredible as this, we know he’s wise.
In one of his homilies, Saint John discusses the 1st Letter to Corinthians which happens to be foundational in my approach to fundraising. Here’s what St John said that has helped me become an even better Catholic fundraiser.
About 8 years ago, I had my first major donor request. At the time, I had no idea how to ask for a large sum of money. I just wanted to help my diocese raise funds… never imagining awkward moments such as these.
At any rate, the donation request went well, and the donor generously said yes.
But the experience left a strong impression on me. I wanted to learn a better way to ask for large donations.
I wanted to learn a Catholic way.
Enter Saint Clement of Alexandria. He gave me the insight that I was looking for, and I want to share them with you.
I’m reading Abbot Jean-Baptiste Chautard, OCSO‘s classic book on the interior life, the Soul of the Apostolate.
This book is so good that it has been given the thumbs up by three popes: Pope Pius X (had a copy on his nightstand), Benedict XV (wrote a foreword for it), and Benedict XVI (cited it during his visit to Lourdes in 2008).
As a fundraiser, Dom Chautard’s guidance is priceless because he offers recommendations for being a “soldier of Christ” who takes “zealous action.”
Cistercians, like you and me, had to fundraise.
Here are three recommendations I have learned from Dom Chautard on fundraising correctly as a Catholic.