Despite being €300,000 in the red at the beginning of the year, Portlaoise Parish ended 2012 with €100,000 in the bank.
Their summary of the parach accounts for 2012 was published in the Link Up, the parish newsletter, last weekend.
One major contributing factor to the surplus was the increased revenue from the Parish lotto of €202,146. This was almost twice as much as 2011.
“It was the luck of the draw, we had a substantial jackpot at the turn of the year. We carried forward a jackpot of €20,000 and we had a reserve jackpot of €20,000. It was a lucky year for us, but the parish lotto does make a substantial contribution to the parish development,” he said.
Income from the offertory collections in all four churches was also up this year. The offertory collection brought in a total of €167,363 last year, €11,294 more than 2011. The Parish Church in POrtlaoise contributed almost €150,000 to the Parish’s income. Scoil Bhride raised €4,025, while the Heath raised €8,505 and Ratheniska contributed €4,863. There was also a rental income of over €50,000, a similar figure to last year.
“Our direct income is up. It’s very encouraging to see the numbers of people attending. We’re in a good financial position,” Msgr Byrne said.
Although the Parish finished the year in credit, they are set to borrow €500,000 to complete the purchase of the 10acre site for the almagamation of the Parish Schools.
The biggest expense for the parish remains the upkeep and maintenance of the buildings in the parish. It cost the parish€52,236 for light and heat, last year and repairs and maintenance came in at €47,379. Misalettes for the four churches cost €5,356 - an increase of €2,424 on last year’s figure.