Capital Campaign News

Many thanks to Eamonn Ahearne and Barb Gomez for sharing the latest update on the building of our new church home at all Masses last weekend. We are grateful for the time and dedication the Capital Campaign Committee, led by Eamonn, and the Building Committee, led by Bob Prezkop, have given to make this dream a reality.

In summary

Thanks to your generosity, our capital campaign pledge goal of $3.5 million has been met! Now, we must collect on these pledge dollars. Typically, 10% of pledges never get paid due to changes in life circumstances so any amount not collected has to be made up. This is why it is important to continue to pay your pledge so we can rely on the amount we expect to receive.

The total cost of the new church is $7.3 million. This amount includes the building, essential furnishings and fees such as architects. Thankfully, the land is already paid for in full.

Three sources will pay for the total cost of $7.3 million: 1) pledges received through the capital campaign, 2) a mortgage loan, and 3) cash from operations.

A mortgage loan of approximately $3 million will be needed. In order to get approved for this amount, our parish must show that our plate income from weekly offerings is able to meet the mortgage payments of approximately $225,000 per year.

Cash from operations comes from plate income that exceeds our parish expenses. Typically, this amount is $200,000 however, recently the plate collection has declined. This makes future cash from operations difficult to predict. Because of this, it is critical that parishioners continue to give weekly offerings.


  • Collect from capital campaign — 2019-2022
  • Assume mortgage loan — 2021
  • Save cash from operations — 2019-2022
  • Begin construction during 2021 (12-18 months prior to having full $7.3 million & if current predictions are all true)
  • First Mass celebrated in 2022!


Heavenly Father,

May everything we do at St. Benedict begin with Your inspiration and continue with Your saving help. Let our work to build Your church always find its origin in You and through You reach completion. Guide us to purposefully live our faith through generosity of treasure, availability of time, and the sharing of our talents as we build a home that welcomes all people and draws them closer to You.

We ask this through Christ our Lord.



Case Statement

The case statement will be provided to all families and details the church’s history, current needs and goals. It includes beautiful renderings of the new church, details about the facilities, and methods of support for the campaign.


New Church Update: Stained Glass Windows


Our stain glass artists have been working hard, along with our interior design architect, to develop the stained glass windows for our new church home.

As you enter the new worship space, looking forward, you will see above the altar a stained glass crown. It will feature liturgical colors as the reflections of a beveled jewel. On the wall behind the altar will be St. Benedict. As you turn left, facing south, the design of the large window will be based on the Sacrament of Baptism and our becoming a part of the Good Shepherd’s sheepfold. Looking around the main worship area you will see twenty upper windows presenting the Mysteries of the Rosary - four sets of five. This will weave in many lessons of our faith by telling the story of Christ’s life.



Frequently Asked Questions

As we prepare for the beginning of our Living Our Faith, Building Our Home Capital Campaign, our goal is to answer questions that surfaced during the campaign assessment through a series of frequently asked questions.


As part of the Today’s Children, Tomorrow’s Leaders diocesan campaign in the late 1990s, Catholic leaders built two new elementary schools, including St. John Bosco. It opened in 2001 as an interparish school, with financial and pastoral support provided by the parishes of St. Andrew the Apostle, St. Benedict, Corpus Christi, and Holy Spirit. In 2008, with enrollment growing, and at the direction of Bishop Thomas Olmsted, the school incorporated with the Parish of St. Benedict and changed its name to St. John Bosco Catholic School.

St. John Bosco is a preschool through 8th grade with an average class size of 20 students. There are more than 390 students enrolled.

Children of parishioners and students attending SJB are an important part of our entire parish community, and we remain committed to helping them celebrate this important milestone in the parish’s history. We recognize that participating in the sacramental life of the school and parish is a foundation memory for children and will last a lifetime. Over the coming months, children – from toddlers to young adults who participate in religious education activities or attend SJB – will learn about and prepare for the transition to a new church.

Each week students participate in an all-school Mass. They partake regularly in religious education, including Mass, rosary, adoration, Advent wreath discussions and Stations of the Cross. Students may also receive preparation for the sacraments of reconciliation, confirmation and First Holy Eucharist.

We can share several examples of interaction between the two communities. Mrs. Anita Petitti, St. John Bosco’s principal, participates in parish staff meetings and meets weekly with Fr. Bob Binta sharing school updates and learning of parish activities. Fr. Bob Binta and Fr. Raymond Ritari frequently visit the school campus. During the year, staff from both organizations interact regularly. Finally, several of the faculty and administrators are parishioners or participate in the parish life of St. Benedict.


During our campaign assessment, conducted in January 2018, more than 85 percent of respondents said they would financially support a capital campaign for a new church. The pastoral and finance councils then voted in favor of conducting a fundraising effort for the project.

The projected cost is $7 million for the building and $1 million for the interior features, such as pews, stained glass, ADA-accessibility features, and other liturgical and sanctuary beautification. We will be addressing efforts to streamline construction costs and eliminate non-essential expenses or design.

In a perfect world, we’d raise the entire amount necessary for this project immediately. We have set an ambitious, yet attainable, goal of $3.5 million to build the church as currently designed. If we fall short of our goal, we will have to compromise on the church design. Should the campaign exceed its goal, this will reduce the amount of borrowing needed.

In October 2016, we celebrated the retirement of our debt from the construction of our current worship space. Through the leadership of our pastors and finance council, we accelerated mortgage payments which resulted in retiring the debt 11 years early!

The diocese will not contribute any money to our project. Every dollar raised in the capital campaign will remain with St. Benedict.

These funds remain with the parish and we use them to pay for costs associated with the new building, including professional services such as architects, permits, inspections and campaign costs.

The parish can service debt up to $3 million. The parish construction and finance committees will interview possible lenders, either the Knights of Columbus, which funded our current building, or an independent bank or lending institution.

We scheduled the campaign kickoff at Mass for the weekend of April 21-22. Your family will receive a packet of campaign information, including a gift request letter, just after kickoff. Please take time to carefully review the information and prayerfully consider the request. Campaign volunteers will begin reaching out the parishioners the week of April 23. The campaign will last until mid-July.

Most donors will fulfill their commitment over the three-year pledge period. The most common payment choice is cash or check, and we will employ Faith Direct, which your family may already use, to manage online/automatic payments for pledges. We’ll also accept gifts of stock, property, annuities or other planned giving; the parish leadership encourages parishioners considering these options to speak with their financial advisor or attorney first.

If you work for a company or offer a skillset that provides services that will benefit construction of the new church, please contact the parish office.


Fr. Bob would like to have our first Mass in the new building for Christmas 2019. After groundbreaking in the fall of 2018, construction should take 12 months.

The new church is the only item for Phase 1 and funds raised during this campaign will be applied solely to this initiative. The following phases include:

  • Phase 2a: Modify the existing building into a parish hall. This will include a dedicated kitchen for parish events and additional storage space for St. Vincent de Paul.
  • Phase 2b: Construction of a new administration building.
  • Phase 3: Construction of new early childhood classrooms.
  • Phase 4: Construction of a new gymnasium.

* Phases 3 and 4 can be switched, based on need or funding.

No, but parking in dirt lots will be limited or unavailable during the time of construction due to staging and supply storage. Your journey from the car to the doors may be new and take a little longer, but signage about walkways and ADA access will be updated regularly. Based on availability of funding, the parking lot on the east side is scheduled to be completed during Phase 1.

A narthex is included with the new church, and will be separated from the nave (main body) of the church. Interior doors will provide noise reduction between this gathering space and the worship area.

Yes, in a large room south of the narthex that can be divided into two rooms. These rooms will serve the same functions as the meeting room in the rear of our current building.

We will not demolish the existing building. Our current building will be modified in Phase 2a to serve as a parish hall and support other ministries. The new church will be located in the dirt lot to the northwest of the existing building, extending close to 48th Street.

The new church will have a chapel available for daily Mass, adoration, and small weddings and funerals. With the chapel’s main interior doors open, the space can be used for overflow seating at Mass. Located on the north side of the new church, the chapel will have an external door, its own restroom and seat approximately 100 people. If the budget permits, a meditation garden near the chapel is planned.

The annex buildings are temporary buildings, and the original plan was to remove them after the administrative building is built in Phase 2b. This may need to be readdressed.

St. John Bosco does not have a gym. The school has a multipurpose room that is too small to host athletic events with any type of seating. Further, this room is used for a variety of school, parish and community functions.

There will be ample space for parking and drop-off, and handicap parking will be close to the main church and chapel entrances. All parking and roadways will adhere to ADA standards and state and local codes.

This will depend on the budget available to invest in the outside beautification. The strategic plan calls for a gathering space, which is included in Phase 2b with the new administration building.

Yes, a bell tower is included in Phase 1. An electronic carillon will amplify bell sounds played from loudspeakers in the tower.

The new church will have a dedicated gift shop north of the main entrance.

Leadership and Contacts

Fr. Bob Binta

General Chair
Karen & Eamonn Ahearne

Honorary Chairs
Marcia & Jay Iole
Kim & Martin Ruggiero

Campaign Committee
Julie & Parker Davis
Chettie & Hal Dodson
Carol & Don Engel
Holly & Dave Forseth
Chona Guang
Barb & John Phelps
Charlie Schifano
Karen & Chris Sommers
Cathy & Mike Templeton
Jennie & Jim Tighe

Special Events Chair
Marilyn & Bob Johnston

Administrative Support
Carol Lawless
Mary Jane Livens

Campaign Counsel provided by the Steier Group
MacGarret Becker

Parish Contact
Parish of St. Benedict
16223 S. 48th St.
Phoenix, AZ 85048

Volunteer sign-ups, campaign inquiries and pledge questions should be sent to: