Charity and Development Appeal supports the New Evangelization

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Joe Reynolds, owner of Skyline Productions, which produces the weekly televised Mass, speaks Jan. 16 at the Diocesan Pastoral Center. (J.D. Long-García/CATHOLIC SUN)
Joe Reynolds, owner of Skyline Productions, which produces the weekly televised Mass, speaks Jan. 16 at the Diocesan Pastoral Center. (J.D. Long-García/CATHOLIC SUN)

The 9 a.m. Mass at Ss. Simon and Jude Cathedral is one of eight Sunday liturgies celebrated at the mother church of the Diocese of Phoenix. But it has, by far, the largest number of participants.

Thanks to the Charity and Development Appeal, the Sunday morning Mass is broadcast simultaneously on the television, radio and the web. More than 65,000 Arizona viewers tune in each week, according to Joe Reynolds, producer of the TV Mass.

“The Mass has a global impact,” he said, recounting how — through the web, the TV Mass audience includes viewers from across the nation and throughout the world.

One participant wrote that he watches from Indiana and prefers the cathedral Mass to his local televised Mass. A homebound grandmother wrote to say the TV Mass allows her to sit and explain the Mass to her 14-year-old grandson.

“Thanks to the CDA, we are able to share Christ’s message to people we couldn’t even imagine,” said Reynolds, who calls God his “executive producer” and insists he’s only “along for the ride.” Skyline Productions, Reynolds’ company, has won multiple awards. More than 40,000 tuned in for the televised midnight Christmas Mass.

Reynolds spoke Jan. 16 at the Diocesan Pastoral Center during an information meeting about the 2013 Charity and Development Appeal. Through the CDA, Catholics support more than 70 spiritual, charitable and educational organizations in the Diocese of Phoenix.

The Charity and Development Appeal supports more than 70 educational, charitable and spiritual organizations which counsel, feed clothe, house, educate and comfort those in need throughout the four counties in the Diocese of Phoenix.
The Charity and Development Appeal supports more than 70 educational, charitable and spiritual organizations which counsel, feed clothe, house, educate and comfort those in need throughout the four counties in the Diocese of Phoenix.

Cynthia and Matthew Scheller, who served as the 2012 CDA co-chairs, are returning to serve in the same capacity in 2013. They will also mentor the future 2014 chair couple, said Fr. Greg Schlarb, vicar of stewardship.

“It’s about serving and about saying ‘yes,’” Cynthia said, adding that her family doesn’t see serving the CDA as a task, but as a blessing. Her four children also shared what they enjoyed about their involvement last year.

Sara, the eldest, was moved when serving at Maggie’s Place; Matthew noted the time at Paz de Cristo; John said he was moved by how $27 a month could help a person get to work through a bus ticket; and Megan, the youngest, said she liked the CDA video.

“I hope they continue to make good ones,” she said, “because I still have a lot of videos to see.”

This year’s goal is $8.1 million, which Fr. Schlarb explained is the tally of what parishes and missions expect to raise.

“It’s expressed in dollars, but it’s better expressed in the way we show our love for God and for our family,” he said, noting that, “We are one family in Christ.”

Bishop Thomas J. Olmsted said stewardship is best understood as the way we “express our love for Jesus in our time, talent and treasure.”

Time is precious, and we don’t know how much of it we have left, he said. And sharing talents is also a matter of recognizing talents in others.

“Our Lord Jesus is the treasure of our life,” the bishop said. “If we know He is our treasure, we know how to use our other treasures right.”

About the CDA

The Charity and Development Appeal supports more than 70 educational, charitable and spiritual organizations which counsel, feed clothe, house, educate and comfort those in need throughout the four counties in the Diocese of Phoenix.

The CDA raised more than $8.1 million last year to support organizations like the Foundation for Senior Living.

J.D. Long-Garcia is the former editor of The Catholic Sun. He joined the staff in 2004. J.D., a lay Dominican, studied journalism and psychology at Arizona State University, philosophy at the Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology, and theology at the Graduate Theological Union. He's taught classes at the Kino Institute, worked as an outreach intern at All Saints Catholic Newman Center, led a deanery confirmation program in Berkeley, Calif., and served as a catechist for children of various ages. He was born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.

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