Lay Faith Leaders Benefit from the Support of Vocations
“I might not have gone through the program without it.”
Fostering vocations is a component of the One Faith, One Hope, One Love campaign that is often associated with the formation of seminarians at the Athenaeum of Ohio. But another component of that support is the fostering of vocations for lay students as well. Funds from the campaign have allowed the Athenaeum to bolster lay enrollment and assist lay students seeking to further their education and embrace vocations to serve others in the Church.
For the last three years, every lay student at the Athenaeum has received a tuition discount for classes because of funds contributed to the One Faith, One Hope, One Love campaign. This has included students in the permanent diaconate program, lay pastoral ministry program as well as lay graduate students and students in non-degree certification programs. In 2017, $176,701 of scholarship money was distributed to lay students. Every lay student in 2017 received a 50% reduction in tuition. This year, each student has continued to receive assistance with a 25% reduction in tuition.
According to Dr. Susan McGurgan, the Director of the Lay Pastoral Ministry Program, the students have been very appreciative of the financial assistance. “They are deeply appreciative of the people in the Archdiocese who have made this possible and were able to give to the campaign. I believe that the assistance makes a concrete difference in our students’ lives.”
Dr. McGurgan said another benefit of the tuition discount has been that students are taking more classes and finishing their degrees and programs earlier. This in-turn provides the opportunity for students to serve and give back to the community quicker. “Whether they serve as a volunteer or a staff member or a teacher, the people of the Archdiocese are the recipients of their knowledge and preparation and formation. I think every parish in our Archdiocese has been touched by an Athenaeum graduate,” said Dr. McGurgan.
Anna Klosterman is in her final year of the Lay Pastoral Ministry Program. Since her youth she has been discerning her vocation to serve others. Her first career has been a nurse and care-giver, but now she is planning to apply her Catholic faith in her ministry to serve others when she graduates in May. “I don’t think I would have enrolled for classes without the tuition assistance,” said Ms. Klosterman. “I greatly appreciate the support and I think most people in my class would say the same thing that I am saying, I might not have gone through the program without it.”
The Archdiocese of Cincinnati continues to foster vocations with support to the One Faith, One Hope, One Love campaign. Funds for this allocation are given to the Athenaeum of Ohio. In 2017, the Athenaeum received just under of $2.5 million from the campaign. In addition to tuition assistance for lay students, campaign funds were used for capital improvements and endowment growth.
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