Sharing

THE GOSPEL

One T-Shirt at a Time

Our Challenge

Since 1970, weekly church attendance among Catholics has dropped from 55% to 20%. The number of priests has declined by almost 50%. In Catholic circles, there have been extensive discussions about how to turn the tide that is sweeping away our culture's faith. Some have suggested more radio broadcasts. More money in advertising. Changing the mass. We are acting like this is not a crisis the Church has faced before.


At Caritas, we are committed to playing our part in supporting the Church in her time of need. What the Church of our generation needs more than anything is a new wave of cheerful, proud Catholics who are not afraid to share their faith everywhere they go. We need a new wave of saints, who are made saints not by being perfect, but simply by being willing to share Christ's love with a world that so desperately needs it. We know what we need. Now, how do we get there?

A New Spiritual Weapon

What if every single one of your parishioners had a shirt promoting your parish, that they could wear out into the community?

What if every Catholic across the country had a T-shirt, custom made to their local Church, that they could wear everywhere they went?

Imagine the conversations that would be sparked. Imagine the souls that would be saved.

And what if all of this could happen, without asking for any payment by the Church itself?

Instead of charging you, we give 50% of all profits to support vocations to the priesthood.

At Caritas, we are working daily to making this a reality for churches across the US. With the Holy Spirit's guidance, there is nothing stopping us.

All we need is you.

How We Bring This To Life

Shirt fundraisers have always been a very popular way for groups to raise funds for their organizations and spread messages of hope.

However, designing and producing T-Shirts can get complicated. Design software. Bulk distributors. Material Sourcing. Screen Printing. On and on.

Our goal is not to replace local ministries, but to empower them by removing these obstacles to a successful T-Shirt fundraiser. We handle graphic design, material sourcing, buying in bulk, printing and shipping.

Some ministries also struggle to come up with the funds needed to purchase an initial stock of T-shirts. We remove this obstacle by taking all the risk ourselves, buying an initial batch of T-shirts and shipping it to your Church - for free.

All we ask is that our local ministry partners help promote and physically sell their shirts in their home parishes.

What It Looks Like

Caritas started at San Juan Del Rio Catholic Church, in the diocese of St. Augustine. Our first ever sale was conducted the week of April 1- April 9, 2024.

We conducted an online pre-sale over our website the week before the main sale, where we advertised the T-Shirt within the parish and allowed them to pre-order a shirt online.

We were expecting roughly 30-40 preorders. We got 100.

When we went to go sell the shirts out-front of the Church, we expected to sell between 5-10 shirts per mass. We sold 35 shirts per mass.

Out of the 4 major masses we attended, shirts were sold out after 2 masses. We ended up taking pre-orders for a second batch, because San Juan Del Rio parishioners were so eager to get their hands on a new way to share their faith.

Our goal was to sell 150 shirts. We sold 260.

From one church, we were able to generate almost $2000 for diocesan vocations. We were also able to give 260 San Juan Del Rio parishioners a new way to share their faith.

The project only required 4 volunteers total. All the priests had to do was announce the sale at mass, and with their classic enthusiasm for anything that will help the Church, encourage parishioners to buy the shirts.

Let's bring this process to your Church.

What could You Do?

We are offering you a done-for-you fundraiser with a potential to generate your ministry between $1000 - $2000 in profit. What impact could you make with that extra money? What lives could you change? How could you use those resources to serve the Lord?

Let's Get Started - No Cost T-Shirt Fundraiser!

How Much Does it Cost?

Working with us costs nothing. We actually take the entire risk of producing and shipping your Church custom T-Shirts. While the quantity that we are willing to provide up front will depend upon the size of your Church, the whole point is that this is a no-risk opportunity for parishes.

All we ask for is the permission and support of local priests. All we ask for is a couple of volunteers to be willing to give a couple hours 1-2 Sundays a year for the cause of evangelization and fundraising.

We make our money from the direct T-shirt sales to parishioners. Shirts cost between $20-$23, depending on the size of the shirt. We take 50% of the profits, and the other 50% of the profits go to support charitable causes of the participating ministry's choice.

How Long Does it Take?

The production and shipping of the shirts takes 3-4 weeks. The online pre-sale can start before the shirts arrive. Overall, assuming that there are no extra orders placed, the project is a 4-5 week affair.

However, almost all of the work that takes place in the first 4 weeks before the shirts are physically sold are taken care of by us. We will design custom bulletin ads, email messages and the other online promotional that are needed for the sale to be a success.

All priests have to do is verbally encourage parishioners to buy the shirts, outside of mass and after mass on the day of the sale. All volunteers have to do is send the online promotional pieces to the right parish administrators, and sell the shirts.

Why Not Do It Myself?

First of all, it is easy to underestimate the amount of work that is needed to pull off a successful T-Shirt fundraiser. On our first sale, the shirt design phase alone took 3 weeks, to get the approval from all the right people. To order bulk shirts from a wholesaler, you have to have a registered resale license with the state you are operating it. You will need to wait at least another week for them to open an account for you.

You will then need to physically order a sample shirt and verify the material works for you. You will need to establish relationships with suppliers, printers and shipping companies.

And if you want to run the online sale as well, that requires an entirely separate E-commerce software, and a lot of work on the backend to make sure that it runs smoothly and is usable.

In short, running a successful T-shirt fundraiser is a lot of hard work.

We take care of everything except physically selling the shirt. We already have the supplier relations. We already have proven, high-selling shirt designs. We already have excellent, comfortable materials picked out that minimize shirt shrinkage. We take care of the complexities of running an e-commerce business that supports your parish.

We take care of all the boring stuff. Our goal is not to replace local ministries, but to empower them by removing many of the obstacles to successful T-Shirt fundraisers.

What if I Already Have a T-Shirt Person?

The last thing we want is to step on any toes or disrupt anybody's ministry. Most Catholic Churches, especially larger parishes, will have someone who has experience with the apparel industry and is able to handle T-shirt production. They may already be making T-shirts for vacation bible school, the youth group itself and special parish events.

We are not interested in taking their existing business away. GoCaritas is primarily interested in running evangelization-centered T-shirt fundraisers in which Church branded T-shirts are sold to the entire parish. Unless your T-shirt person is already helping you run a similar fundraiser, then there is no reason we can't work together side by side in the parish.

If you are considering taking the idea and using your existing T-shirt person to create the shirts, it is important to remember that production is only one part of a long, detailed process that must be followed through to execute the sale properly. You need design, production, shipping, a strong sales process, an online sale system and a method to directly communicate with all parishioners who purchased a T-shirt. We cover all the bases, when nobody else can.

And there is no reason that the existing shirt person can't be looped in on the sale itself. They are always welcome to participate in the design and production process if they have something to add.

Are You a Non-Profit?

No, we are not a non-profit.

However, with 50% of all profits from our T-shirt sales going to support charitable causes in the Church Universal, we act as a non-profit in everything but name. For reference, when a non-profit accepts a donation, it is generally expected that at least 65% of those funds support charitable causes.

The only difference between a non-profit and us, is that employees of non-profits must pay significantly more in income taxes. If we were to become a non-profit, the biggest winner would not be the Church - it would be the government.

While we are not a non-profit, we are also not just a company. We are a Catholic company, committed to doing business along Catholic principles. We only run our T-shirt fundraisers with Catholic churches, even though expanding to other denominations would be very profitable. We do this because we are firmly committed to the needs of the Catholic Church only, not any other church.

While we are a for-profit company, we believe that we can still serve God just as much as any non-profit can.

Can I Pick the Design?

Yes, we are happy to create a custom design for your Church.

We have between 3-5 templates that are ready to go for your project. We will send you the templates, and if you like the design, we will simply change the text on the shirt to reflect your church's branding.

If you want something custom from scratch, we are happy to provide free graphic design services to accommodate your needs, up to 3 revisions. Just send us the branding/logos/images you want on your shirt, and tell us exactly what you would like us to make.

All we ask is that you let us handle the graphic design process. The reason for this is that, when youth ministers or people in the church office take control of the design process, it inevitably leads to the process being stretched out many more weeks than necessary. This can often lead to a "death by committee" situation, where the project just never happens because the design process takes too long, people get busy, nobody can agree on a design etc.

Furthermore, when youth ministers try to make their own designs, they almost never create a design that is technically screen-printing ready. This ends up leading to unnecessary costs and further slows things down when our printer bills us for "unusable artwork".

When you let us handle the graphic design, we are happy to create a shirt to your exact specifications. You can be assured that we will create a quality, custom design is a timely manner.

How Do I Get Started?

We would love to answer any of your questions on a quick call booked here

We can arrange a Zoom call or Google Meet - whichever is convenient for you.

Contact

  • christian@gocaritas.com

  • 904-529-0754

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