Leslie Turk

Opus series raises goal of $439,000

by Leslie Turk

The Acadiana community opened its collective heart to the Opus Christi Magnum fundraising series this year, donating $439,000. Earlier this week Bishop Michael Jarrell announced the success of the series, which netted its goal of $400,000, after $39,000 in expenses. An impressive 91 cents of every dollar raised goes directly to Lafayette Catholic Service Centers, which serves those most in need.

The 2008 fundraising series grossed $463,000, netting $425,000 for LCSC’s efforts.

"In the wake of the worst economic crisis of the past 70 years, coupled with a very fragile oil and gas economy, it is quite humbling for us to reach our goal of $400,000 net raised," says Tyron Picard, who chaired the 2009 series with Msgr. Keith DeRouen. "It is a testament to the hard work of the many captains who hosted one of the eight events, the generosity of our benefactors, and the leadership of Msgr. DeRouen and Bishop Jarrell. We are proud that we have again displayed good stewardship and accountability for the dollars the community has entrusted to us, by keeping our costs low and passing on 91 cents of each dollar raised to Lafayette Catholic Charities, which feeds the hungry, shelters the homeless, cares for mothers and children and cares for our veterans in Acadiana."

Opus Christi Magnum means "the great work of Christ," and serving the poor is the core mission of Lafayette Catholic Service Centers. OCM is the designated fundraiser for LCSC.

Again this year, Acadiana embraced the smaller and more intimate series of events. Each event is hosted by captains who invite their family and friends to a spiritual presentation by Bishop Jarrell at the Cathedral of Saint John the Evangelist, and then everyone adjourns to L’ Eveche (former residence of the bishop) for a reception of cocktails, hors d’ oeuvres and conversation with the bishop. The donations received directly fund the agencies of LCSC — St. Joseph Diner, St. Joseph Shelter, St. Joseph Transitional Housing, St. Michael Center for Veterans, Msgr. Sigur Service Center, Bishop O’Donnell Transitional Housing, New Life Center and New Life Child Care Center.

The 2009 event captains were Picard, Beth Ardoin, Dr. David Barczyk, Barry Berthelot, John Butcher, Representative Page Cortez, Kelly Gauthreaux, Dr. Kim Hardey, Randy K. Haynie, Ed Hebert, Mark Knight, Robbie Mahtook, Jimmy Mallia, Sen. Mike Michot, Sue Munchrath, Greg Reggie, Duayne Richard, Dave Romagosa, Richard Sturlese, Mike Thompson, Pat Trahan, Pete M. Yuan, Gus Zepernick Jr. and Richard Zuschlag. It was also announced that Ed Hebert, Lafayette market president of Chase Bank, has assumed the reins as 2010 OCM chairman, with Debbie Alleman, former Gov. Kathleen Blanco and her husband Raymond, Tommy Hightower, Debbie Mahtook, Matt McConnell and Tracy and Frank Neuner serving as captains in 2010. Michot is chair-elect for 2011.

The 2010 OCM event dates are: Feb. 25, March 22, April 15, Sept. 23, Oct. 12 and Nov. 4. For more information on the series, contact Dawn Cole at 288-5007 or [email protected].