You can help advance the mission of the Archdiocese of Denver

Amy Bryer Brumley

Most people can’t envision themselves as philanthropists. That image is reserved for multi-millionaires or even billionaires with well-known names. 

Philanthropy is about compassion and generosity for others and the Archdiocese of Denver wants its faithful members to know that the spiritual experience of charity is available to everyone at all giving levels. The Archdiocese has more than 40 ministries that spread the missions of faith formation, faith leadership and works of mercy. 

The Archdiocese has made an intentional new focus on its missions and that new concentration came with a new name — the Office of Mission Advancement.

“The Archdiocese wants to engage with donors in a purposeful way that emphasizes the Church’s good works and reinforces our mission of sharing the Gospel and bringing others into a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ,” said Paul Dudzic, Chief Officer of Mission Advancement. 

“Our impact is greater than ever because of our donors and we want them to partner with us to lift up the Gospel’s message and enhance their giving experience at the same time,” Dudzic said.

The office has a team of professionals who can partner with donors and help them identify, prioritize and fulfill their philanthropic goals and visions within the Church.

“Donors are able to understand more deeply where they are giving,” said Major Gift Officer Kelsey Greiner.  “We can introduce them to the different ministries, answer any questions that they might have, and give them insight into new initiatives within the ministries that they might not get from just viewing the website.”

Andrew Castillo has been partnering with donors for more than two years and he believes the relationships between the ministries and the benefactors are a vital part of the process.

“People who fundraise don’t want philanthropy to feel transactional,” Castillo said. “Our job is to connect in that place: where your love for the Catholic church, your personal philanthropy and the Church’s needs can meet.”  

Nonprofit giving by individuals in the United State totaled nearly $430 billion in 2018 and religious organizations make up almost 30 percent of that, according to Giving USA statistics.

“Philanthropy is not just about money, it’s also about being a champion of our work and helping connect us with other passionate individuals who care about the Church,” said Andrew Schaefer, Director of Mission Advancement. 

Schaefer oversees the team of gift officers dedicated to enhancing the impact of donations and philanthropic goals.

“The Catholic Church has a great culture of community and giving in many different ways — that is just one way that makes the Catholic Church a special place,” Schaefer said. 

Team Roster

Our team is here to be a resource for you and your family as you make philanthropic decisions that help advance the Mission of the Archdiocese within its more than 40 ministries including: Archbishop’s Catholic Appeal, Seeds of Hope, Catholic elementary schools, Prophet Elijah House, St. John Vianney Seminary, Redemptoris Mater Seminary, Annunciation Heights, Centro San Juan Diego, Bishop Machebeuf and Holy Family high schools.

Paul Dudzic
Chief Officer of Mission Advancement

Andrew Schaefer
Director of Mission Advancement

Andrew Castillo
Major Gift Officer

Kelsey Greiner
Major Gift Officer

Lisa Metcalfe
Major Gift Officer

Ways you can help Advance the Mission:

1. Make financial contribution commensurate with your capacity.

2. Invite others to connect with the mission advancement team and ministry leaders.

3. Evangelize to help advance our faith and share the Good News.

COMING UP: Preparing your Home and Heart for the Advent Season

Sign up for a digital subscription to Denver Catholic!

The Advent season is a time of preparation for our hearts and minds for the Lord’s birth on Christmas.  It extends over the four Sundays before Christmas.  Try some of these Ideas to celebrate Advent in your home by decorating, cooking, singing, and reading your way to Christmas. Some of the best ideas are the simplest.

Special thanks to Patty Lunder for putting this together!

Advent Crafts

Handprint Advent Wreath for Children 
Bring the meaning of Advent into your home by having your kids make this fun and easy Advent wreath.

Pink and purple construction paper
– Yellow tissue or construction paper (to make a flame)
– One piece of red construction paper cut into 15 small circles
– Scissors
– Glue
– Two colors of green construction paper
– One paper plate
– 2 empty paper towel tubes

1. Take the two shades of green construction paper and cut out several of your child’s (Children’s) handprints. Glue the handprints to the rim of a paper plate with the center cut out.

2. Roll one of the paper towels tubes in purple construction paper and glue in place.

3. Take the second paper towel and roll half in pink construction paper and half in purple construction and glue in place.

4. Cut the covered paper towel tubes in half.

5. Cut 15 small circles from the red construction paper. Take three circles and glue two next to each other and a third below to make berries. Do this next to each candle until all circles are used.

6. Cut 4 rain drop shapes (to make a flame) from the yellow construction paper. Each week glue the yellow construction paper to the candle to make a flame. On the first week light the purple candle, the second week light the second purple candle, the third week light the pink candle and on the fourth week light the final purple candle.

A Meal to Share during the Advent Season

Slow-Cooker Barley & Bean Soup 

Make Sunday dinner during Advent into a special family gathering with a simple, easy dinner. Growing up in a large family, we knew everyone would be together for a family dinner after Mass on Sunday. Let the smells and aromas of a slow stress-free dinner fill your house and heart during the Advent Season. Choose a member of the family to lead grace and enjoy an evening together. This is the perfect setting to light the candles on your Advent wreath and invite all to join in a special prayer for that week.

– 1 cup dried multi-bean mix or Great Northern beans, picked over and rinsed
– 1/2 cup pearl barley (Instant works great, I cook separate and add at end when soup is done)
– 3 cloves garlic, smashed
– 2 medium carrots, roughly chopped
– 2 ribs celery, roughly chopped
– 1/2 medium onion, roughly chopped
– 1 bay leaf
– Salt to taste
– 2 teaspoons dried Italian herb blend (basil, oregano)
– Freshly ground black pepper
– One 14-ounce can whole tomatoes, with juice
– 3 cups cleaned baby spinach leaves (about 3 ounces)
– 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese, extra for garnish

1. Put 6 cups water, the beans, barley, garlic, carrots, celery, onions, bay leaf, 1 tablespoons salt, herb blend, some pepper in a slow cooker. Squeeze the tomatoes through your hands over the pot to break them down and add their juices. Cover and cook on high until the beans are quite tender and the soup is thick, about 8 hours. 

2. Add the spinach and cheese, and stir until the spinach wilts, about 5 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and season with salt and pepper. 

3. Ladle the soup into warmed bowls and serve with a baguette.