April 19, 2013

Tuition assistance helps a Warren family maintain a Catholic education

GA Tom, Nicolas, Anna, Dori April 2013

Guardian Angels parishioners for two years, Tom, Nicolas, Anna and Dori live in Warren. Initially receiving archdiocesan tuition assistance in 2011, the children now have scholarships from the parish and Bishop Foley High School.

Providing a Catholic education for their children is a priority and a financial challenge for thousands of parents in southeast Michigan. Catholic schools are a mission priority for the Detroit Archdiocese, which, along with dozens of Catholic schools in metro Detroit, is grappling with increasing school operating costs while trying to keep tuition affordable. As the archdiocesan Department of Evangelization, Catechesis, and Schools works with pastors and school administrators on an area-wide plan to stabilize and strengthen Catholic education in the Detroit Archdiocese, tuition assistance continues to be a difference-maker.

GA Nicolas & Anna April 2013

Nicolas and Anna currently receive tuition scholarships from Guardian Angels Parish in Clawson and Bishop Foley High School in nearby Madison Heights, about a mile from the parish.

Tuition assistance to attend Catholic primary and secondary schools is available from several sources, including parish and school scholarships, various other funds, and the Detroit Archdiocese, which, through the Changing Lives Together capital stewardship initiative, intends to generate an additional $15 million for that part of the archdiocesan Endowment Fund that fuels tuition assistance grants of up to $800 for Catholic students attending K-8 Catholic schools in southeast Michigan. Catholic high school students can qualify for up to $500 per year in archdiocesan tuition assistance. These funds make a Catholic education possible for families weathering the economy, changes in life circumstances, or experiencing other financial challenges.

Researching, applying for, and combining tuition assistance funds enabled Warren residents Dori and Tom to keep one child in Catholic elementary school and another in high school. “In 2011, our family was going through a tough time with my mom in out of state hospice care and my daughter suffering a knee injury that was only partially covered by health insurance,” said Dori. “We pursued archdiocesan tuition assistance, and it made a Catholic education affordable for our family,” she said. Nicolas is currently in the 6th grade at Guardian Angels School in Clawson, while Anna is a sophomore at nearby Bishop Foley High School in Madison Heights. The family has since tapped into tuition scholarships offered through Guardian Angels Parish and Bishop Foley.

“We wanted faith-filled atmospheres in our parish and the kids’ schools,” said Dori. “That’s how we decided on Guardian Angels and Bishop Foley,” she explained. “The sacraments and the schools are clearly at the center of parish life at Guardian Angels, which reinforces our priorities at home.” Anna is active in the Bishop Foley prolife group and arrives early for school on Fridays to join a rosary prayer group. “The tuition help we received meant we didn’t have to give this up,” she added. Dori, a full-time mom, volunteers at both schools while Tom runs a retail business in Roseville.

“Our commitment to Catholic education in southeast Michigan is focused on building families and a solid foundation for the New Evangelization,” said Bishop Arturo Cepeda, Director of the Department of Evangelization, Catechesis, and Schools for the Archdiocese of Detroit. “I applaud the efforts and pastoral care of Guardian Angels School and Bishop Foley High School to make a Catholic education more affordable and accessible.”

Parishioners at Guardian Angels have pledged nearly $545,000 to the parish Changing Lives Together initiative to fund several facility upgrades including a new parking lot shared by the church and school.

Updated April 2013

Changing Lives Together is a series of parish campaigns to generate resources to fulfill parish-developed plans and priorities. Learn more about the initiative in your parish.