Because of a decrease in the number of grant applications and a sharp increase in financial support, the Mater Ecclesiae Fund for Vocations has decided to make financial awards to all 23 applicants who submitted requests for financial assistance in 2014. According to the Fund, “This act equates to a commitment to raise an additional $75,000 each year for more than a decade.”
Often, men and women who have discerned a religious or priestly calling are impaired from pursuing their vocation by large amounts of outstanding student loans, whose settlement normally must be arranged prior to entering the novitiate or seminary. The Mater Ecclesiae Fund seeks to remove these impairments by paying candidates’ student loan installments while candidates pursue their vocations.
At present, more than 100 men and women are being helped by the Mater Ecclesiae Fund to follow their vocations. The fund has assisted a number of newly ordained priests, including Fr. Daniel Heenan who was ordained last Saturday in Leesburg as a priest of the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter.
Contributions to the Mater Ecclesiae Fund are tax-deductible and may be made year-round. While the 2014 grant application cycle has completed, the 2015 application cycle is expected to open on September 15, 2014.