Posted on April 21, 2022 | Updated on April 28, 2022
The Roman Catholic Church within the Diocese of Allentown (“Diocese”) strives to make information available about its financial condition and provide reports to the faithful. Consistent with that goal, the Diocese is publishing its combined financial statements for fiscal years ending June 30, 2020 and June 30, 2021. These financial statements may be accessed by clicking here. These financial statements include the assets and liabilities of, among other entities and civil structures:
- Roman Catholic Diocese of Allentown Charitable Trust (the “Charitable Trust”);
- Bishop’s Annual Appeal Charitable Trust (the “Bishop’s Annual Appeal Trust”);
- Supplemental Health Care Benefits Trust (Lay Employees) (the “Health Care Trust”);
- Clergy Third Age Charitable Trust (the “Third Age Trust”);
- Diocesan Cemetery Perpetual Care Trust (the “Perpetual Care Trust”);
- Eastern Pennsylvania Scholarship Foundation Charitable Trust (the “Scholarship Foundation”); and
- the Roman Catholic Diocese of Allentown, a Pennsylvania unincorporated association (the “RCDA”).
These financial statements do not include the assets and liabilities of Allentown Catholic Beneficial Association Inc., the Allentown Catholic Unitized Investment Fund Charitable Trust, diocesan high schools, special learning centers, regional elementary schools, parishes, parish cemeteries, social services, pension plans, long-term care facilities, or religious communities of men and women within the Diocese. Each of the foregoing exists as a separate, distinct entity or other civil structure from the RCDA and foregoing trusts.
Historically, all assets of the Diocese have been held in trust by the current Bishop, in accordance with Canon Law and Pennsylvania Law; however, aside from Canon Law and Pennsylvania statutes, no written document fully (a) specified the powers and duties of the Bishop for civil law purposes, (b) described with particularity the assets held in trust, (c) described the restricted purposes for which the assets were held, or (d) defined the rights, obligations, and duties of various trust advisors, administrators, or agents. As a result of the Diocese’s regular review of its compliance with Canon 1274, various existing trusts were memorialized or amended and restated, in 2012. In particular, the Charitable Trust, the Bishop's Annual Appeal Trust, Health Care Trust, Third Age Trust, Perpetual Care Trust, and Scholarship Foundation were each memorialized in 2012.
The Charitable Trust includes substantially all long-term assets utilized or necessary for the implementation of the mission and ministry of the Diocese—that is, what would generally be considered the stable patrimony of the Diocese under Canon Law. The Bishop’s Annual Appeal Trust includes the funds contributed to or on behalf of the Bishop’s Annual Appeal or the Because We Are Catholic Appeal. The Health Care Trust consists of various funds received in connection with the health care benefits provided to lay employees within the Diocese. The Third Age Trust includes funds contributed specifically for providing for the sustenance, care and needs of Catholic clergy in good standing and retired from active service within the Diocese. The Perpetual Care Trust contains funds specifically designated by purchasers for the purposes of perpetual care, maintenance, improvement, restoration, preservation or embellishment of burial plots, grounds and buildings marking the graves of the faithful departed. The Scholarship Foundation contains funds received and accepted for the specified and restricted purposes of providing scholarships and other educational assistance to needy students attending schools in the Diocese.
The documenting of the foregoing trusts and funds made express and clear what had been in place since the Diocese was formed in 1961—substantially all assets utilized by the RCDA are held in trust by the Bishop for the benefit of Catholics within the five counties comprising the Diocese. With the support of the foregoing trusts, the RCDA operates and implements the mission and ministry of the Roman Catholic Church within the five counties comprising the Diocese.