Occasionally, we have the great fortune to receive gifts from people who are not members of our diocese. This was the case on August 4, when Robert N. Roach (Nick), chief executive officer of The Chemical Company of Jamestown, Rhode Island and his daughter, Liza Roach, the youth and young adult minister for the Diocese of Norwich Office of Faith Events, gave Bishop Cote a $10,000 check.
This was not the first time that the Roach family gifted their money across state lines. In 2018, they established the Roach Family Endowment to support the Diocesan Office of Faith Events. Founded in 1988, The Chemical Company is a chemical distributor working with both domestic and international pharmaceutical companies. It has been very busy during the pandemic, supplying isopropyl alcohol to manufacturers of sanitizers throughout the world.
Helping others, during a public health crisis or not, is a mantra of this organization. The family company has a long history of giving back to its community in many ways, and in 2012 established The Chemical Company Fund at the Rhode Island Foundation in order to support programs for educating youth in chemistry and strengthen the development of the next generation of scientists.
Realizing the financial challenges that the Diocese of Norwich and all dioceses are facing, Liza and her dad felt that another gift from The Chemical Company would be a good idea.
“This year, we know how difficult it has been for the diocese in funding the important ministries provided on a day to day basis, whether it is providing food, assisting with shelter or hosting workshops to give spiritual guidance or training,” Liza Roach said. “With limited finances and knowing firsthand all of the great programs of the Office of Faith Events, the Roach family thought it would be better to make an immediate gift to the diocese which would directly impact the good work of the office’s ministry. We could have donated to our endowment with the Catholic Foundation but wanted to have a larger and more immediate result.”
“Being blessed with a prosperous business, we have always been very motivated to give back to our community whether in our home state or elsewhere,” Nick Roach said. “Since Liza works in the Office of Faith Events, we know firsthand that this money will be very well used. Having grown up in the diocese of Norwich, the diocese continues to hold a special place in my heart and I am very happy to make this donation.”
Bishop Cote, in accepting the gift from Nick and Liza, thanked them on behalf of the entire diocese.
“We are so very grateful for your continued kindness,” the bishop said. “Your endowment with the Catholic Foundation ensures that your prior gifts will continue to impact our diocese for many years to come and now, today, you make another generous donation to help our Office of Faith Events carry out its mission and enrich the faith of so many at a time when it is greatly needed.”
For more information about how to donate to the Roach Family Endowment or to make an immediate gift to the 2020 “One Faith, One Family” Annual Catholic Appeal, please contact Heather Harris at (860) 886-1928 Ext. 111 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
By Mary Ellen Mahoney