I’m humbled, once again, to share Catholic Community Foundation’s (CCF) financial success from the last year. In fiscal year 2017, CCF experienced record growth in assets of $45 million. At $318 million in total assets, we remain the nation’s largest Catholic community foundation — a fact we herald only because it reflects the immense generosity of this local community and propels our grantmaking efforts. Last year, we granted $14 million on behalf of our donors – a 40 percent annual increase. And since our inception, we’ve granted more than $140 million.
Reflecting on 2017, I was struck by the powerful impact of our women philanthropists. Often quiet champions for giving, these faith-filled women understand that philanthropy can foster the future we envision. I love how St. Edith Stein writes that “woman naturally seeks to embrace that which is living, personal, and whole.” Doesn’t that perfectly describe the community we seek to build? At CCF, women philanthropists contribute to building that kind of community every day.
Jesus reaffirms these invaluable contributions in the anointing at Bethany. Defending a woman who has anointed his head with costly oil, Jesus says: “And truly, I say to you, wherever the gospel is preached in the whole world, what she has done will be told in memory of her.” (Mark 14:8-9) That legacy lives on today. Every time a woman acts with compassion, love, and faith, she steps into this Gospel story and into that sacred truth.
In this annual report, you will read inspiring stories of women philanthropists who have done just that. You’ll read how the League of Catholic Women reimagined their contribution to our community through philanthropy, how two women have chosen to build their philanthropic legacies, how CCF’s social impact grants help young mothers in crisis, and how a woman’s final gift has inspired two parishes to greater foresight and perpetual stewardship.
Living, personal, and whole, women are foundational to philanthropy and the community we seek to build. It’s our honor to tell their stories and advance their perpetual legacies. With that, I enthusiastically share with you this year’s annual report, Told in Memory of Her.
Anne Cullen Miller, MBA