14 November 2014

Building for the future...



THE ATONEMENT ACADEMY COLLEGE PREPARATORY

AUTUMN 2014 REPORT

BUILDING FOR THE FUTURE

The Atonement Academy is the single most important apostolate of our parish. As the people of God, we support pro-life efforts because we teach the sanctity of human life in our classrooms. Together, we support the dignity of the human person and the truth about Christ by teaching children the Catholic faith in its entirety. Together, we are changing the future of the Church and the world through our children. From its small beginning in 1994, The Atonement Academy has grown to be a regional attraction for students, drawing them from over 25 zip codes and four counties surrounding Bexar County. We have developed a positive reputation even beyond our borders, too. Almost six percent of our population are carefully-selected international students from Mexico, the Republic of Korea, Vietnam, and the Philippines, who bring a charm all their own and uniquely contribute to our strong Catholic and classical culture. We are a National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence and twice the recipient of the Cardinal Newman Society’s Honor Roll of Top Catholic High Schools in the nation. Here’s one of the reasons: our average SAT score in Math and English is 1129 for our junior class. Our seniors’ average is 1138. By comparison, Northside ISD averages 972 in Math and Reading; Texas SAT average is 976.

Our recognition has put a strain on our existing classrooms. At 570 students this academic year, (almost identical to our enrollment in the last three years), The Atonement Academy is at capacity in the current building, so the need to expand our classrooms is a necessary one, which we are doing! After years of planning, we are excited that construction has begun on our 117,000 sq. ft. expansion. This time last year, we were making earnest preparations for “Phase 1 and 2” of the expansion plan, which involved the construction of 19 new classrooms and four science labs, plus a dining hall, two practice gymnasiums, more offices and site preparations which include additional parking. We’ve revised our site plan and goal since the short 2010 Capital Campaign, making the design more cost-effective without sacrificing the needed classroom space. Because of your generosity, we have continued to revise our plans and have elected to build the entire complex, including the auditorium shell, though it will not be finished-out when construction is completed. Although we are doing well in our financial goals, your ongoing participation as a tithing member of Our Lady of the Atonement Catholic Church is vital to the success of our expansion and the overall well-being of our parish. Unlike other parishes who lack schools, and have no interest in supporting one or establishing one, we’ve chosen another path – one in which we think the Church urgently needs in this age: a well-educated, well-informed and faithful generation of young people.

Here’s where we are and here’s how we’re going it with God’s blessings…

Our current financial position is healthy for both the church and school. The church, originally built in 1983-85, and expanded in 2003-05, is totally debt free. The St. Joseph Parish House is debt free. The St. Anthony Hall, built in 1997, is debt free. The only debt we service is the school expansion (completed in 2005). Those payments are approximately $24,000 per month, and we owe about $1.6 million on the remaining note, at a 4.12% interest rate, to be completed in 2020.

Due in part to a rise in student enrollment over last three years and good fiscal stewardship, The Atonement Academy is self-sustaining without a parish subsidy to its Operating Budget and will contribute over a half million dollars this academic year to the construction costs, its third year in a row to do so. How can you help?

PRAYER AND FINANCIAL SACRIFICE

As the history of this parish shows, God provides. He provides, but we pray! Every parishioner, young or mature, should consider making it his or her prayerful intention over the next year to support this expansion project. Prayer moves mountains. It moves people to stop and reassess their lives, and it moves people to be generous. In addition to prayer, we need each member of the parish, and even beyond our community, to contribute financially. The gifts of each and every person are vital to the success of our on-going efforts. Reflect on how greatly God has blessed us as individuals and as a parish family, and give thanks to God for these blessings by prayerfully considering what you can do to help.

• PLEDGES OF CASH GIFTS • GIFTS OF STOCK. You may call our financial representative at USAA and he will assist you making a transfer from your portfolio to ours. Contact Mr. Vincent Knodell directly at 210-456-7012. • TITHING. All excess money (that which is beyond what is needed for the budget) given to the church through your tithes goes automatically to the Academy Building Fund.