St. Augustine launches campaign for new chapel and student center – Madison Catholic Herald

A rendering of the new chapel to be built at St. Augustine University Parish in Platteville. (Picture added)

PLATTEVILLE — St. Augustine’s University Parish and Pioneer Catholic Newman Center have reached a major fundraising milestone in their historic fundraising campaign to build a new chapel and student center for college students. UW-Platteville (UWP).

The project garnered early support, raising over $3.4 million since August 2021 and bringing the total raised for the chapel to over $5 million.

With daily and weekend masses brimming with students and members of the local community, the parish administrator, Fr. John Del Priore, SJS, saw the need for the new chapel and student center. “Sunday masses are so full that we have set up folding chairs in the narthex of the current chapel,” he said.

The project is the final phase in the transformation of the Newman Center campus, which first built a $12 million, 144-room housing complex in 2018, drawing students into a safe space where they can live and relax. flourish as Catholic students.

Accommodations are comprehensive, attracting Catholic and non-Catholic students into a welcoming, positive and transformative living community.

To respond to needs

The overall vision for campus transformation is to meet the spiritual and physical needs of UWP students, build relationships, and provide positive reinforcement to live a faith-based life.

“Our students need a place to grow and prosper, to learn to be leaders for the future of the Catholic Church in the region,” Fr. Del Priore said.

Students come from all over Wisconsin and the Midwest, and many are specifically drawn to UWP because of the Pioneer Catholic Newman Center. “They are transformed, but so is the community of Platteville, as are communities in Wisconsin and the region, when students begin their lives as working adults,” said. Father Del Prior.

Due to growth, the parish has outgrown its current space for sacraments, gatherings, and discipleship groups.

According to Father Del Priore, “We have a line at the door for Confession. We organize events in the basement. Our campus ministers conduct Bible studies in the basement or outdoors.

Launched by generous donations from philanthropic leaders in Platteville, Madison, Dubuque, and throughout Wisconsin, the fundraising milestone is the first benchmark to make the project’s vision a reality.

The staff and board of Father Del Priore and St. Augustine are confident that the $12 million project will be a success.

“We have a lot of work ahead of us to reach our total fundraising goal,” said Christina Vandagriff, Director of Development. “But we have a compelling project with a transformative mission. We have received positive feedback and strong support from donors, and we are confident that we will secure the remaining funds for this project by 2023.”

The new facility

The 300-seat chapel will feature a Gothic design. Additional side chapels will showcase relevant saints and devotions, including an easily accessible chapel for the disabled.

The student center will include a banquet and events hall, a full kitchen, several spaces for Bible studies and small group meetings, and offices.

Groundbreaking is scheduled for 2023.

For more information about St. Augustine University Parish, go to

To support the project, contact Christina Vandagriff at [email protected]


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