For immediate release
A record year for ACN – Over 117 million dollars raised for 5,600 projects in 140 countries
Montreal, Thursday June 20, 2013 – For the first time since it was founded, the international Catholic pastoral charity Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) has recorded donations in excess of $117 million . This is reported by the charity in its annual report, published today. It shows that last year the benefactors of ACN in 19 different countries gave donations totalling over $117.9 million – a remarkable $11.2 million more than in the previous year.
From these resources ACN was able to fund no fewer than 5,600 pastoral projects in 140 different countries around the world, the report reveals. The highest individual total ($5.3 million) went to the growing Church in India, followed by Brazil and Ukraine (with $4.9 million each) and Russia, with $2.6 million. Some of the highest subsidies were also given for Church projects in those countries where Catholics had to face political or social crises or repressive state control – for example in the Democratic Republic of Congo (with almost $2.8 million ), in Cuba ($1.8 million) and Vietnam ($1.6 million).
ACN was also very much present in other crisis countries, for example in Pakistan, Iraq and Sudan, where Christians have experienced oppression and persecution; in Syria, currently torn by civil war; in Haiti, which continues to suffer the repercussions of the terrible earthquake of 2010; and in Burma (Myanmar), which still faces an uncertain political future.
According to the report, 27.9% – the largest proportion of the aid given – went on a wide variety of construction projects, for churches, religious houses and community centres around the world. The second largest proportion, 18.9%, included Mass offerings for priests and other forms of financial support for the life and ministry of priests and religious. Other priority areas detailed in the annual report include the theological formation of pastors and pastoral workers (10.6%) and subsidies for the day-to-day pastoral work in the parishes (12.1%). A further 8.3% of the last year’s budget was allocated to the support of various Catholic radio and TV stations around the world.
By ACN International
Adapted by ACN Canada