We hope this letter finds you well and safe. Our greatest desire is to welcome you back to OLC one day soon when the Covid-19 pandemic has subsided. Together, we are experiencing and living through this unprecedented time. We are praying for all of you and your well-being. OLC is not the same without the presence of our devoted and beloved community.
From mid-March through June, the closure of OLC has caused serious financial hardship. We exist primarily on the revenue from the events that are held here. Our retreats, programs, hosted groups and scheduled fundraising events have all been suspended or cancelled; therefore no revenue will be realized from these sources for the foreseeable future. Our economic loss through June will approach $200,000. This is a small amount for some organizations but a considerable hardship for OLC. Unfortunately, when we do re-open this amount will be a deficiency that will be seriously difficult to make up. The economic impact from this shutdown is considerable, significant and real.
Since the pandemic began, we have been assessing the various government resources available to religious non-profit organizations. We applied for the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) as part of the CARES Act and were blessed to receive funds from this program. This will allow us to pay our employees through mid-June and allow them some relief to pay their expenses and for OLC to pay a few utility bills. We have also applied for economic disaster assistance through the CARES Act, but we remain uncertain at this time if we will receive any assistance from this program. These government programs will provide us short-term relief but not fulfill nor sustain our long-term need.
It is important that we now turn our attention to the future and ascertain what that may look like for OLC. We will re-open in the coming months but remain uncertain as to a definitive date. We continuously review the myriad guidelines that must be followed from the CDC, state of CT and the Archdiocese of Hartford in order to re-open. We are assessing changes that we will be required to make to our retreats, programs and hosted groups events in order to comply with new public health regulations. These include social/physical distancing, sanitizing/disinfection, food preparations/service, masks/face coverings, liturgical services and employee training just to name a few. We are committed to doing whatever we need to do to make your experience here safe and healthy, while at the same time providing you the spiritual experience you are so accustomed to receiving from the OLC ministry.
The purpose of this letter is two-fold. First, to bring you up to date as to the serious financial hardship the pandemic and economic shutdown has caused to OLC. Secondly, this letter announces the start of our Annual Appeal which we traditionally begin in June each year. Our need this year is much more serious, urgent and different than in years past. This year’s campaign is a request for you to help us with our financial recovery. Realistically, we will not return to any sense of “normalcy” most likely until January 2021 in terms of being able to generate any significant income from our retreats, programs and hosted groups.
Our need caused by Covid-19 is great. We have specifically and purposely not asked you directly for support up until this time. We were hopeful, as you were, that the Coronavirus would be short-lived and we would return to life as we knew it. We understand and realize that you too have financial needs and obligations.
We truly and urgently need your support now during this unpreceded time to meet our expenses. If you made a contribution to the Annual Appeal last year, please increase it this year if you are able to do so. Please contribute this year if you have not in the past. Don’t delay. Your support, during this Annual Appeal, will make a significant difference in how we move forward with our ministry. Your help at this moment will make a difference and provide financial relief to OLC and allow us to plan to welcome everyone back to our open doors in the not too distant future. This is our primary mission now – to open our doors and welcome our beloved community back.
We know how dearly many of you hold OLC in your hearts. We realize there are many different requests that you receive. Please do what you are able to do. Any gift you give is through the grace of God.
Prayerfully consider your donation to OLC. You can mail it or you may also donate online here on our website if you prefer. You can further direct your donation to the Annual Appeal. The CARES Act may allow you to deduct a portion of your donation this year.
Let us all continue to pray for all of those affected by the Coronavirus pandemic.
May the Holy Spirit guide you accordingly and on behalf of the Sisters of the Cross and Passion and the dedicated staff at OLC, we sincerely Thank You!!
There’s a New Spirit at Our Lady of Calvary – Come Experience It!
Peace & Joy,
Ron Miceli – Administrator Sr. Mary Ann Strain, CP – Program Director
Bill Husic – President, OLC Board of Trustees