Baltimore, MD, is where Catholicism in the United States began. The Archdiocese of Baltimore was the first diocese in the United States. Through the years, the land has been divided up, and while they aren’t the only diocese in Maryland anymore, it has 135 parishes and 46 schools around the state under its umbrella.
Marcus Madsen is the Technology Director of the Archdiocese as well as the Vice President of DISC (Diocesan Information Solutions Community). DISC comprises all of the technology directors of the Diocese across the country. They meet once a year at a conference and send out mass communications several times yearly. DISC works with multiple vendors, ACST being one of them.
While each Catholic parish has its own set of ministries, the Archdiocese of Baltimore tries to follow The Six Core Mission Priorities. These priorities were laid out by Most Reverend William E. Lori in a pastoral letter that he wrote, A Light Brightly Visible – Be Missionary Disciples, in 2016, and the revised and updated version, A Light Brightly Visible 2.0, published in 2021.
“LBV is built on the bedrock of our faith in Jesus Christ. At the heart of our faith is not a mere idea, however noble or inspired, but rather an encounter with Jesus Christ, our Savior. And by the word “encounter,” I do not mean merely a chance meeting or a casual relationship, but something more akin to a meeting of minds and hearts.” Most Reverend William E. Lori – A Light Brightly Visible 2.0
One of the most critical points in the letter focuses on the importance of the Great Commission, “Go and Make Disciples of All Nations.” This key point is based on scripture from Matthew.
New Revised Standard Version Catholic Edition
The Commissioning of the Disciples
16 Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”[a]
The letter explains that if you built a church on every corner years ago, people would come right in. Now, it is necessary to expand outside the church walls, whether through social media, small groups, or community outreach. Another one of the core principles is ensuring the church is welcoming in all areas. These principles outlined in the letter compelled Marcus to move the Archdiocese onto MinistryPlatform, where they could manage their different ministries and mission areas. Being the first Catholic Diocese to use MinistryPlatform is something that Marcus is very proud of.
“Everything from Life Ministries to youth formation to Catholic formation, death ministries, prison ministries, so when you say ministries, there’s just so many we go into all of them but trying to capture those in a system. We’ve never done that before.” Marcus Madsen, Director of Technology.
Their previous system was great for keeping track of offertory and some Sacraments, but they needed something more powerful. Once the Archdiocese signed up, they brought in 5 of their parishes to do a pilot. MinistryPlatform has since been implemented in all of their parishes across Maryland, and each parish is working towards utilizing all the different features and reporting.
“Our goal is to perfectly align the correct KPIs to measure each priority and utilize MinistryPlatform to capture and report on the metrics.” – Marcus Madsen, Director of Technology
One of the best features in MinistryPlatflorm, in Marcus’ opinion, is the 360-degree view of a parishioner, which allows them to see all aspects of a parishioner, for example how many times they attended in the past month, where the kids are going to school, how many spaghetti dinners they came to, and the engagement points between the parishioner and the church.
MinistryPlatform helps the Archdiocese of Baltimore manage its many ministries, centralize information across the Archdiocese, and keep track of parishioner engagement.
To learn more about The Archdiocese of Baltimore, click Here
To learn more about DISC (Diocesan Information Solutions Community, Click Here
To learn more about MinistryPlatform and ACSTechnologies, click Here
About Stacey Smith
Stacey joined the ACST team in 1998 in the support department and joined the marketing team in 2021 as an Associate Marketing Coordinator. Today she runs the ACST Ministry Champions program, which involves all references, reviews, and testimonials for all of our products and services. When she isn’t at work, she is spending time with her husband, two teenage daughters and furbaby Copper.