I am reprinting a letter I received from Ian Rutherford @ Aquinas & More Catholic Goods. Some of you may remember that his business graceously sponsored my attendance at Allume last year and I wanted to help him out as well. Thanks!!
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I write to you tonight with an announcement to make. As you all know, after 10 years, Aquinas and More announced it would be closing at the end of February. This was not an easy decision for us.
To our wonder, the outpouring of support for Aquinas and More from our customers and the Catholic community at large has been overwhelming. We graciously, graciously thank you.
This has left us in a bit of a quandary. We could not realistically continue in our present state of affairs But the void in Catholic shopping and Catholic service left by the closing of Aquinas and More is also real. We’ve always felt that Aquinas and More was truly a mission. Are we being called to continue? Are we not? I know what I want, but I also know that — more importantly — I want God’s Will.
In this regard, Aquinas and More.has decided to launch an “all-or-nothing” crowdfunding campaign over the next two weeks (Tuesday March 5- March 19) to return to its mission of serving others with their authentic Catholic online shopping experience.
Our goal is to raise $250,000 in two weeks in order to replenish inventory, overhaul the website and retain excellent Catholic customer service and results. It’s a big number, we know. But we also know that we have more than 30,000 Facebook fans, and we’ve served more than 200,000 customers. We have been richly blessed. So we have joy and hope, gaudium et spes.
We our calling our campaign the “Aquinas and More Angel Campaign”. You can visit the site at: http://www.gofundme.com/
As fellow Catholics and bloggers, I ask you first to pray for our campaign. We will be praying the Saint Michael the Archangel prayer daily for this endeavor. Secondly, I ask you to please help us spread the word about our Aquinas and More Angel Campaign. This is a “We” Campaign. We can’t succeed without your help! You have your audiences, your friends, your families, your parishes. If you would like the work of Aquinas and More to continue, please share our story, our site, and your experiences out there with your networks. I thank you.
If you want to help, but aren’t sure what to say or emphasize, you can always talk about some or all of the following:
Aquinas and More is not just a Catholic store – it’s a way of life. We are unabashedly and authentically Catholic in our policies, products, & projects
The only place where you’ll find a “Good Faith Guarantee”policy– making sure our products are guaranteed to be in conformity with official Church teaching. As a Catholic store, our mission is to clearly present the Faith for pur customers
Anti-China Policy: Aquinas and More does not buy products from China, guaranteeing money isn’t spend supporting forced abortions and the persecution of Christians in China
“Military Chaplaincy Program”: providing for the spiritual needs of our soldiers defending our lives and liberties with a soldier registry and free shipping
“Church Supply” Catholic products for parishes, priests and seminarians
“Tiber River”: Catholic books reviews from fellow Catholics
“Behind the Counter” Radio Show:Catholic product advice from the experts
Catholic Literacy: Articles on Saints, being Catholic, Church history, and more
In the community: For example, Aquinas and More donated a portion of their sales to wildfire relief efforts in Colorado last summer;
In their family: Paula and I (Ian) Rutherford, have had 10 children in 13 years – need I say more?
Giving to the Aquinas and More Angel Campaign means helping to build and restore an authentic Catholic culture. No where else can you find such a ministry and mission – a living and serving, Catholic approach to shopping.
Aquinas and More is the “New Evangelization” in a nutshell. As part of the Year of Faith, we are called to deepen our faith, believe in the Gospel message, and go forth and proclaim the Gospel. That is the essence of Aquinas and More.
Supporting the Aquinas and More Angel Campaign means supporting:
— the New Evangelization.;
— makers of Catholic products and other Catholic businesses;
— our parishes and religious;
— Catholic families;
— Catholic writers
When is the Aquinas and More Angel Campaign?
Tuesday, March 5 – Tuesday, March 19 . Our site is not live yet (it will be on Tuesday), but you can check it out as we get ready to launch at: http://www.gofundme.com/
How can you help spread the word?:
A blog post(s), tweets, sharing on your Facebook page, letting your Catholic network know, talking it up to family and friends, etc. We really need a strong online presence especially in the first 48 hours (Tuesday/Wednesday) to raise awareness and excitement.
Raise $250,000 in two weeks in order to replenish inventory, overhaul the website and retain excellent Catholic customer service and results. If Aquinas and More doesn’t reach its goal, your angel donation won’t be processed, and we will not be reopening.
Friends, thank you so very kindly for taking the time to read my rather long email and outpouring. I thank you all for your support throughout the years. Whatever happens, I am grateful for your friendship.
Saint Michael the Archangel,
defend us in battle.
Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil.
May God rebuke him, we humbly pray;
and do Thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host –
by the Divine Power of God –
cast into hell, satan and all the evil spirits,
who roam throughout the world seeking the ruin of souls.