Project:  Long-Range Financial Planning

Client:  Church of St. Odilia - Shoreview, MN

CFC Helped Us See That Without Change, We Would Run Out Of Cash

SITUATION:  In recent years the Church of St. Odilia experienced significant change including a change in pastoral leadership, the purchase of adjoining land and buildings and, due to changing demographics, a decline in school enrollment.  These changes prompted parish leaders to embark on a Long-Range Planning Process in the hope of charting the future course of programming and ministry both within the parish and to the surrounding community.  At the start, the planning process produced a list of parish dreams, each of which added cost.

CFC ROLE: In the face of these changes and as an essential element of a comprehensive planning process, the parish saw the critical need for a corresponding Long-Range Financial Plan.  St. Odilia leadership engaged the services of Catholic Finance Corporation (CFC) to assist and guide them in the development of a long-range financial planning model specific to their parish and fully integrated into their long-range plan.  They knew that CFC understood the importance of parish life and that CFC views long-term financial planning as essential to parish viability and sustainability, which is necessary to continue the mission and ministries that serve the community.

CLIENT REFLECTION:  We are so glad that we engaged CFC.  What a difference they have made for us.  Instead of simply producing a long-range plan with hopes and wishes, we now have a solid plan with a clear and intelligent financial road map to the future.  We can now see the implications of our decisions and can choose wisely, confident that our decisions will move us to the financially stable future that we want.  CFC helped us see that without change, we would simply run out of cash.

Some parishes have parishioners who might be able to do some of this, but the volunteer effort is not as comprehensive and concentrated as the CFC service is.  Because they are involved with many other parishes, they know what is happening in the bigger picture, what the trends are, and they can help us see our self in a larger view.  Their expertise and guidance has proven to be invaluable while their fees were surprisingly low.

I'd give them an A+ score with regard to the relationship that we grew and for the fine way that they worked with us.  We have found them to be very easy and enjoyable to work with and very effective.

"We now have the knowledge and the methods to operate wisely, make better decisions and communicate more clearly with all involved."

- Tom Schumacher, Parish Administrator