Since 1830, Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish has served the Juniata River Valley by celebrating the sacraments, proclaiming the Word, and ministering to those in need. For almost 200 years, Christ’s love and light have been radiating from the corner of 3rd and North Dorcas Streets to the far reaches of Mifflin and Juniata Counties, and beyond. Our church, almost a century old, is the center of this holy stewardship, along with our school, the rectory, and the parish office.
In a recent survey to the parish, it was determined that our buildings are compromised by modern demands. We must invest in our facilities now so we can continue to support the mission of Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish for generations to come.
In God’s plan for our future
Our vision is to renovate and update our buildings to increase our useable spaces, make them safe, secure and accessible to everyone, and provide state of the art technology and amenities, such as:
- An expanded church narthex (entrance/lobby), an elevator and stairs leading to a newly renovated church basement, with room for meals and meetings
- ADA accessible entrances and bathrooms
- Security cameras, lighting, and doors
- Projectors/screens for presentations, increased Internet connectivity
As we refresh our facilities, we can renew our spirit of mission and ministry, better serving our parishioners and the surrounding community.
To make this vision a reality, we are calling upon each and every parishioner to pray and share their opinions on moving forward. We do not have cost figures at this point. However, before a capital campaign would begin we would review a budget plan with the parish for the project.
Let us rejoice in God’s plan for our future in faith, fellowship and ministry!
Lord God, Almighty Father, we thank you for the gift of Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish, our spiritual home in this life, guiding us, by Your grace, to the Eternal Life to come. We thank you for our many baptisms, weddings, and confirmations that have taken place in our 100-year-old church, for the thousands of students taught in our school over the years, and for the countless masses celebrated and absolutions imparted. Help us now to give back to this beautiful church in thanksgiving for her many years of service to us. Help us to create a place to gather and grow so that we may rejoice in Your plan for our people…together. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen
Anniversary Present to our 100-year-old Church
She deserves it. The parish deserves it. It’s time to fix this lovely lady up for her 100th Anniversary.
Although the parish itself began in 1830, the original wooden church was razed for new construction. While the corner stone of our current building says 1921, our research reveals a dedication ceremony in 1922. It’s on us.
Last year, the Diocese of Harrisburg approved our Concept (idea) Study on plans for a renovated church basement and expanded narthex (entrance). After a year-long coronavirus hiatus, we completed a Feasibility Study. The Feasibility Study was overwhelming in moving forward with a Capital Campaign. We received Diocese approval to move forward with a Capital Campaign in October 2021.
Envisioned is a handsome tower-style addition to the right of our front façade, compatible with the current architecture, containing more gathering space inside plus an elevator and stairs leading down to a renovated basement. Downstairs work will include repair of the currently deteriorating sub floor, plus wide open meeting space, complete with folding walls for separate meetings, and including improved internet access and video capabilities. A new commercial kitchen will be installed as well. Finally getting rid of those dangerous outdoor steps almost alone makes the project worthwhile. Our goal is to make our church fully handicapped accessible.
The estimated cost of our planned project is $1.2 million. We plan to raise and collect the funds over the next five years. Construction will not be completed to celebrate our 100 years because we do not plan to borrow any funds but instead complete work from the funds raised.
Our noble church building has served us well these 100 years. Let’s return the favor by gracing her with our generosity, which is so consistently characteristic of our faith community. Sacred Heart of Jesus Church deserves this.
Frequently Asked Questions
How does The Capital Campaign impact our parish?
Our church, now a century old, is in need of renovations and updating, so we can continue to minister to our parishioners and our community. Our parish is currently limited by the available space to serve all the needs of current and prospective ministries. Our vision is to increase our usable space and make them safe, secure, and accessible to everyone and provide state of the art technology and amenities, so we can gather and grow our parish. Your support for this project is critical to the future of Sacred Heart Parish.
I received my brochure in the mail. What do I do now?
You should have also received an invitation to attend one of several receptions where you will have the opportunity to gather more information and ask questions, as you prayerfully consider your pledge to the drive. You will be asked at that time to make a pledge. In addition, we will have an in-pew appeal the first week of June at all masses. Our goal is to have all pledges in by the first week of June.
Is there a plan to take the elevator to the choir loft?
Taking the elevator to the choir loft was not part of our original concept but will be investigated further by the newly formed Planning and Building Committee.
It was reported that we already have funds to put toward the project. How much do we have in savings?
We currently have around $250,000 in the Capital Savings Account, which has been growing for several years from an original gift of $100,000. We have also received two grants from a foundation that will also be used for the project. More information about the grant will be announced at a future date.
I have read that our church building was dedicated in (with construction completed in 1821, as the stone shows) and that the capital campaign is launched this year in part to celebrate the 100th anniversary. Does that mean construction will begin on this anniversary?
No, construction begins when most or all funds have been received from generous donations. We are simply commemorating the anniversary as a point of inspiration in order to encourage enthusiasm for the campaign, giving back to our church building, which has given so much to us over the 100 years.
How do I pay for my pledge?
Gifts and checks can be made payable to Sacred Heart Parish. Please designate Capital Campaign on the memo line or envelope. You are welcome to place gifts in the offering or mail them to the parish office or drop them off. If you would like to fulfill your Capital Campaign pledge in some form other than cash (e.g., appreciated securities), please contact our Business Manager, Jodi Peters, at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (717) 447-2002.
Where will these funds go?
Every dollar you contribute towards The Making a Place to Gather & Grow capital campaign will go directly to this very important project that impacts the lives of everyone in our parish from our youngest to our most senior parishioners. A separate account has been established to restrict the Capital campaign funds.
Where can I continue to find updated information?
Updates on the capital campaign can be found online at https://sacredheartcampaign.com/. Additional information can also be found within the bulletins and newsletters or by contacting the Parish Office at (717) 242-2781.
Can I make my pledge online?
At this time, pledges can not be made online. Please return pledge cards to the Parish office by putting them in the collection basket, dropping them off, or mailing them to 9 N. Brown St., Lewistown, PA 17044. If you have not received a pledge card and would like one, please contact the parish office at (717) 242-2781.
Will my pledge be confidential?
All pledges will be kept as confidential as possible. Only the people responsible for maintaining the records will have access to your pledge.
How will our campaign affect parish offertory?
In the short term, offertory giving is expected to remain constant. Through the effort, volunteers will ask parishioners to make pledges above and beyond regular giving. Parishioners are not asked to diminish giving to the parish but, rather, to consider a commitment above their normal tithe. In the long term, similar campaigns have caused increases in parish offertory by raising the sights of parishioners and their commitment to the church.
Who will be asked to support the campaign?
Every registered parish family seasonal or year-round is asked to be a part of this effort. It is our hope that every parish family will make a truly sacrificial pledge to the Making a Place to Gather & Grow Capital Campaign.
What if I would like to give stocks, real estate, or some other kind of gift?
There are several ways to donate to the Making a Place to Gather & Grow Capital Campaign; please see the complete list on our Capital Campaign page, additionally extensive information can be found on our website at https://sacredheartcampaign.com/.
Can trust and estate gifts be made to the campaign?
Because the needs of the campaign require immediate funding, gifts of cash and securities are generally sought. If you decide to offer a planned gift, please contact the parish office to discuss the options available in making such a gift.
How will I be recognized for my commitment?
The most important recognition you will receive is ultimately that of God Himself; remember that God is not outdone in generosity! Sacred Heart will also recognize your gift; donor recognition is a significant feature of every capital campaign.