Dear Friend of Catholic Exchange,
I'm writing to you this Lent with a simple message: Catholic Exchange needs your support and your prayers now more than ever.
If you're a long-time friend of Catholic Exchange, you appreciate the work we do to proclaim the truth of Christ and his Church, and you know why we need your support now. Would you please click here and make the most generous tax-deductible contribution you can?
If you have discovered Catholic Exchange but aren't yet familiar with all that we do and the amazingly small staff and budget on which we do it, perhaps you'll consider why you should support Catholic Exchange. It all depends on how you answer these questions:
Is it important to teach the Bible from a Catholic viewpoint and spread the Catholic faith all over the world?
Priests tell us that the most requested program by Catholic parishioners is Bible study. We knew that, because we've been approached for years by Catholics wanting to read the Bible who were positively bubbling with gratitude for Catholic Scripture Study (www.catholicscripturestudy.com). What's that? It's the best Catholic Bible Study in the world! It consists of a wealth of solid Catholic teaching on Scripture written by experts like Scott Hahn, Steve Ray, and Mark Shea, and put together into the first Bible study program that's backed up by the Catechism, Papal encyclicals, and the Saints and Fathers of the Church.
"Our men's group loves the study. It feels like eating a Thanksgiving-meal's-worth of knowledge every week." — Michael Osetinsky, Washington.
Now there are over 500 Catholic Scripture Study groups, and more starting up every year. We even have groups in the underground Church in China, and in Muslim countries where the Faith is constantly under attack. We need your help to develop more studies, and make them available to those most in need.
Do we need quality Catholic content on the Internet?
If you're reading this, then it's likely that you're already familiar with our best-known work, the Catholic Exchange website. Whether you visit for our daily articles, Mass readings, Saint of the Day, or new features like our podcasts, blogs, and video, we hope that our daily work has helped you to grow in your faith, and grow closer to the Lord.
We're encouraged by the frequent letters and e-mails we receive from people like you, whose lives have been touched by Catholic Exchange. Here are just a few:
"You are an utterly amazing organization, peopled (on the evidence) by some of the most intelligent, lucid, grounded and funny writers around. Every day you arm me a little better for discourse with my secular friends and colleagues, filling my quiver with apt and well-directed intellectual arrows." — Trish Boyko, Ontario.
"When I became Catholic two years ago I really started to crave the wisdom of the Church. Catholic Exchange gives me my daily fix. I also lead a Catholic Scripture Study group in my parish. I just love the way your writers don't back away from the hard teachings of the Church…" — Randy G., Calgary.
What you may not know is that while Catholic Exchange has always been free to visit, the reality is that it's far from free to produce a magazine's worth of quality material every single day except Sunday. We have a small but very hard-working team of skilled writers and editors, along with the technical folks that make sure the site is available worldwide 24 hours a day. In addition to the personnel cost, we have a hefty monthly bill for the high-availability, high-bandwidth web hosting that ensures our website can handle over a million visits per month. It's a monthly struggle to meet these expenses. Can you help us today?
How can we reach those who have fallen away from the Church?
It's often said that fallen-away Catholics are the second largest religious denomination in the United States. The twin assaults from a culture of sin and death on one side, and poor catechesis and formation on the other, have led to an unprecedented drop in Mass attendance and Catholic practice. Almost every Catholic family knows this sad story personally.
How do we reach these lost sheep? Most are not willing to go to Church, and many refuse to talk about matters of faith. We believe that we have to reach people where they are, before you lead them to where they need to be.
And where are they? Many, especially men and young people, are watching sports and getting ready for Opening Day of our national pastime, Major League Baseball. We're getting ready as well, with the first Catholic Exchange film, Champions of Faith, coming this April.
Champions of Faith includes the powerful witness of a lineup of many Major League Baseball All Stars — and three future Hall of Famers — who discuss their faith, their careers, the spiritual lessons of baseball, and the power of Christ's presence in the Eucharist.
- Champions of Faith showcases the amazing story of the 2006 World Series Champion St. Louis Cardinals through the eyes of National League Championship Series MVP Jeff Suppan and World Series MVP David Eckstein — both engaged, Mass-attending Catholics — who share how, through their faith in Christ, they pulled off one of the biggest upsets in Series history.
- Former Florida Marlins manager Jack McKeon shares how the Blessed Mother was instrumental in his getting into professional baseball, and how St. Therese the Little Flower was the real MVP of the 2003 World Series.
- Champions of Faith also reveals, for the very first time, the ultimate underdog story of Mike Piazza, who was drafted as a first baseman in the 62nd round and became the greatest home run-hitting catcher in MLB history. We discover how he considers presenting his New York Mets jersey to his hero Pope John Paul II to be the high point of his storied career, and see how he carried the heartbroken City of New York on his back after the September 11 attacks of 2001.
- Kansas City Royals captain Mike Sweeney shares his love for Christ and the power of the forgiveness he received from pitcher Jeff Weaver five years after a brutal, bench-clearing brawl between the two players.
Producing a professional, high-quality film on high-definition video, securing rights to game footage from Major League Baseball, and making this film available to schools, men's groups, and at-risk youth is expensive. Without your help, we won't be able to put Champions of Faith in front of those who need it the most. Could you join our team today and make the most generous contribution you can?
What is Catholic Exchange worth to you?
How often do you visit Catholic Exchange? Every day? Every week? How much is that regular serving of spiritual nourishment worth to you? Could you help us with a regular monthly gift? We've made it easy to set up a monthly contribution by credit card or check to keep Catholic Exchange online, and to help keep our faith-building, soul-saving programs alive. Just $25 or $50 a month (less than $2 a day) will make a real difference.
Without the continuing help of friends like you, we would not be able to continue these vitally important projects.
As a token of my appreciation for your prayers and support, I have two special gifts reserved for you!
For those who help us with a contribution of $35 or more, I will send the all-new CD from our very own Mark Shea, "The Best of Rock Solid" featuring favorites from Mark's popular "Rock Solid with Mark Shea" podcast. Whether you're a long-time listener, or a reader of Mark's weekly Catholic Exchange column, or just curious, you'll hear Mark share his wit and wisdom on such wide-ranging topics as Albert Einstein, Inclusive Language, John Paul II, St. Wenceslaus, the Jesuits, the Korean Martyrs, and a whole lot more! This CD is only available from Catholic Exchange. Please send a gift of $35 or more, and it's yours.
If you can help us with a gift of $100 or more, I'll send you the award-winning DVD "Pope John Paul II" starring Jon Voight. This epic film follows Karol Wojtyla's journey from his youth in Poland through his late days on the Chair of St. Peter. It received the highest endorsement from his successor Pope Benedict XVI who said "Watching this film has renewed in me a sense of profound gratitude to God for having given the Church and the world a Pope of such an exalted human and spiritual nature."
Or, if you help us with a gift of $125 or more OR a new monthly contribution of $25 or more, we'll send you BOTH the exclusive Mark Shea CD and the "Pope John Paul II" DVD movie.
It is easy to give to Catholic Exchange.
- You can make a secure contribution on the website by clicking here right now.
- You can call our friendly phone man, Tom Kyd, at 1-888-477-1982.
- Or you can mail a check to Catholic Exchange at P.O. Box 231820, Encinitas, CA 92023.
All contributions are tax-deductible, as always.
Here's the bottom line: Catholic Exchange is doing vital work to bring people to the Catholic faith, and to strengthen and encourage faithful Catholics around the world. We need your help to continue our mission. And therefore I'm asking you to be as generous as you possibly can in response to our appeal and to please pray that our work will be effective for the Kingdom of God. I thank you in advance for your continued support and generosity.
Yours in Christ,
President & Editor-in-Chief
PS: I think we'd both agree that offering quality and faithfully Catholic Scripture studies, proclaiming and teaching the Faith effectively via the Internet, and bringing back those souls who have fallen away from the Church is urgent and important work. We cannot do it without you. So please make your tax-deductible gift today! Thank you!