Chief Financial Officer's Report
Diocese is blessed by the generosity of many
By Mary Beth Koenig
Chief Financial Officer
The fiscal year ending June 30, 2012, was marked by ongoing uncertainty in global economies and financial markets and continued high rates of unemployment in the U.S. In the Diocese of Austin, despite these factors, we continue to be blessed with increasing contributions to meet the needs of our growing Catholic population.
The accompanying financial statements are those of the Central Administrative Office (CAO) of the Diocese of Austin. The CAO provides programs and services to parishes, schools and other Catholic organizations in Central Texas. The accompanying financial statements have been extracted from the audited financial statements of the CAO. The financial statements do not include the parishes, missions, schools and activities of The Catholic Foundation – Diocese of Austin. The financial statements of the parishes can be found on page 18 of this insert.
The activities of the CAO include general operations for the support of parish and diocesan programs, a centralized insurance program for property/liability/workers’ compensation and health insurance for all parish and school facilities and employees, a centralized diocesan investment and loan program (DIAL) for parishes and schools and management of diocesan investments.
The CAO generally operates on a break-even basis. For the fiscal years ended June 30, 2012, and 2011, revenues were greater than expenses and net assets increased by approximately $709,000 and $1.7 million, respectively.
Total revenues decreased by $819,000 in 2012, primarily due to a $1.9 million decrease in investment income. While investment income was positive in 2012, the financial markets were volatile and overall returns (realized and unrealized) were lower than in 2011. The decrease in investment income was offset by higher contributions from the Catholic Services Appeal, higher contributions and bequests and higher insurance premiums in the health insurance and property/liability/workers’ compensation programs. Total expenses were relatively flat with an increase of approximately $187,000 or less than 1 percent. We have worked hard to manage expenses and be good stewards of the assets with which we have been entrusted.
In the Diocese of Austin, we continue to be blessed with increasing levels of giving at the parishes and to the annual Catholic Services Appeal. Despite very volatile financial markets, high unemployment and the worst recession since the Great Depression, Sunday and Holy Day collections at parishes in our diocese have increased (see chart on next page). Over the last decade, parish collections continue to increase from $35.5 million to $53.2 million, an average increase of 5 percent per year. The strong and steady commitment to stewardship and generosity of Catholics in our diocese are truly remarkable.
We have also seen an increase in annual giving to the diocese through the annual Catholic Services Appeal over the last 10 years. Last year, nearly $4.8 was donated to the CSA, compared to $3 million in 2002, an increase of 60 percent. Additionally, during this timeframe, approximately $58.8 million was collected through the Our Faith ~ Our Legacy Capital Campaign through June 30, 2012.
As we look to the future, we will be challenged by increasing health care costs. The financial effect of proposed new health care legislation is unknown. We will strive to continue to provide quality health care to parish and school employees that is in accord with the teachings of the church while minimizing cost increases. Additionally, we continue to work with a few financially challenged parishes and schools that have significant debt, deferred maintenance or operating costs. We assist them by working on long-range financial plans to balance their budgets over time.
On the positive side, we are thankful for the newly established endowment funds created with your gifts to the OFOL campaign. The endowments will serve as a strong financial foundation for our diocese. Distributions from endowments in the Foundation have and will continue to assist in serving the increasing needs of seminarians, retired priests, Catholic Charities, Catholic schools and diaconate and campus ministry for many years to come.
This annual report is one way the diocese reports on the financial results of its activities and ministries. Accountability is an important part of our stewardship responsibilities. Each year, the diocese subjects itself to the scrutiny of an independent audit, which is published at www.austindiocese.org. Diocesan leadership also regularly confers with the Diocesan Finance Council, whose existence is required by canon law and focuses on financial policies, procedures and activities of our local church.
We remain thankful for our many blessings and for your generous financial support. The last fiscal year marked continued growth and improvement in the finances of our parishes and schools. We depend on your ongoing and consistent financial support to meet the needs of our growing population, ministries, education of our seminarians and care of our retired priests. May God bless you for the sacrifices you make to strengthen the faith of Catholics in Central Texas.