Celebrating 20 years of the Schuler Charitable Fund

Catholic United Financial > Featured > Celebrating 20 years of the Schuler Charitable Fund
Foundation News


Catholic United Financial Foundation White Logo
Portrait of Msgr. Schuler by artist Christopher Foote.
Portrait of Msgr. Schuler by artist Christopher Foote.

Please contact the Catholic United Financial Foundation to contribute: 

Donations can be made over the phone at:


Send your donation by check to:

Schuler Seminarian Fund 3499 Lexington Ave N St. Paul, MN 55126

The Fund continues the spirit of Monsignor Schuler’s influence on young men by providing for the every day needs of seminarians 

Monsignor Richard J. Schuler was a true shepherd, who not only attended to the needs of his flock but led them year after year to find their own spiritual pastures. Msgr. Schuler is remembered for his deep love of music. From the conductor’s dais at St. Agnes Church in St. Paul, MN, he led the Twin Cities Catholic Chorale in the High Masses of Mozart, Haydn and Beethoven.

An even more lasting legacy is Msgr. Schuler’s impact on the church through vocations. Msgr. Schuler had a special gift to light the candle to a calling. Anecdotally, he is said to have brought more men to the priesthood than anyone else in the Archdiocese, and was responsible for influencing at least 40 vocations. It was in honor of this man, who was Spiritual Director of Catholic United Financial from the late 1970s until his death in 1998, that the Schuler Charitable Fund was established 20 years ago. It is currently administered by the Catholic United Financial Foundation.

To this day, more than $500,000 in grants have been awarded to seminarians. Msgr. Schuler understood better than most the financial pressure attending seminary can put on students, so from time to time he would help out with something little.

“I still have my original set of breveries that were purchased with funds he gave me,” said Fr. Michael Creagan, pastor of St. Joseph Parish in West St. Paul, MN and Minnesota Army National Guard Battalion Chaplain. “I had him sign a note in the inside cover as a memory.” To carry on that spirit of financial support, the Schuler Charitable Fund awards grants to seminarians for them to apply to their daily lives. Medical co-pays, clothing, books, or even a night at the movies with classmates.

Seminarians have human needs like anyone else, but no ability to work and earn money during their studies. Seminarians receive up to $500, and may apply for the grant every year they are in seminary. Since 2014, the Catholic United Financial Foundation has been engaged in a campaign to bring the endowment fund to a healthy $1,000,000 mark. This amount will guarantee that the Fund can continue to provide grants to seminarians in perpetuity. The campaign will conclude in the next 24 months after the fundraising goal is met.

Twenty years ago, the Schuler Charitable Fund was just an idea to honor a man who led many priests to the cloth. Now, the Fund in his name is making a real difference in the discernment of young men who will lead our local Catholic Churches for decades to come. 

Memories of Monsignor Schuler…

Fr. Michael Creagan, pastor of St. Joseph Catholic Church in West St. Paul, MN and Minnesota Army National Guard Battalion Chaplain: “I first met Msgr. Schuler in 1989 as a freshman at the College of St. Thomas…The thought of priesthood had not entered my mind. A group of ten college students met each Tuesday night to join Msgr. Schuler for sung night prayer, I can still remember how exciting it was to enter St. Agnes and hear the choir practicing…[After Latin compline chant ended we would] spend the next one and a half hours visiting with Monsignor, asking him questions and hearing his stories….He had an unbelievable amount of energy and joy. On those Tuesday nights, praying night prayer and enjoying great conversation, the Lord began to open my heart to the call of priesthood.

“My discernment to enter the seminary started during my sophomore year. I found in Msgr. Schuler not only a great example of priesthood, but also a man who was willing to answer my questions and walk with me along the way. A vocation comes from God alone, yet He often sends us special people to accompany and encourage us along the way….I have often thought that if I had not met Msgr. Schuler, I may not have found the call God intended for me. I will forever be grateful for his kindness, joy and support as I sought to follow the Lord.”

Rev. Mark Moriarty, pastor and Superintendent of St. Agnes Church and School, St. Paul, MN: “Msgr. Schuler played an important part of my vocational discernment as the pastor of my parish, and as someone I turned to for advice…All throughout seminary formation, he made it a point to invite me and other seminarians to participate in the liturgies at St. Agnes…When I was installed as an acolyte, he invited me to join him on communion calls for the sick and homebound. To this day I perform communion rites in the same manner that he did — no secular radio in the car while carrying our Lord, pray the rosary between visits, always make sure the visit includes social time….Monsignor understood that as full-time seminarians, we could not have side jobs and lacked an income. He often arranged modest yearly gifts for me and the other seminarians.”

Fr. John Echert, pastor of Holy Trinity Parish in South St. Paul, MN and U.S. Air Force Chaplain: “My gratitude to Msgr. Schuler for his mentorship to me as a seminarian and young priest, and my personal awareness of the financial stress that seminary formation places on seminarians….The beauty of the Msgr. Schuler endowment grant is that these go directly to the seminarians for their genuine needs, who have lasting gratitude to their benefactors and who will serve the Church for the rest of their lives as dedicated priests.”

2018 Schuler Grant Recipients

Organized by Diocese

Archdiocese of Dubuque

Martin Coolidge

Casey Flack

James Goerend

Tom Heathershaw

Joshua Link

Michael McAndrew

Jacob Nilles

Nicholas Radloff

Tyler Raymond

Joseph Sevcik

Christopher Stoker

Ben Valentine

Eric Zenisek


Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis

Austin Barnes

Joseph Connelly

Charles DeReuil

Paul DiFuccia

William Duffert

Kyle Etzel

Kenneth Field

Francis Floeder

Louis Floeder

Cullen Gallagher

Derek Gilde

Joseph Gifford

Samuel Gilbertson

Ryan Glaser

Alexander Hall

Nathan Hastings

Paul Hedman

Jacob Hornecker

Ryan Kielty

John Kluge

William Kratt

Steven Lang

Jonathan Liedl

Timothy Lyngdal

Michael Maloney

David Maslow

Max Mauch-Morff

Sean Mulcare

Joseph Nguyen

Zachary Ochsenbauer

Alexander Rasset

Michael Reinhardt

Michael Richards

John Rumpza

Josh Salonek

Michael Selenski

Randall Skeate

Ryan Sustacek

Vinh-Thinh (Tim) Tran

John Utecht

Joseph Wappes

Nicholas Vance

Christopher Yanta

Andrew Zipp


Diocese of Bismarck

Eric Artz

Mark Aune

Jacob Bennett

Anthony Dukart

Grant Dvorak

Benjamin Franchuk

Paul Gardner

Joshua Hill

Dustin Johns

Jacob Magnuson

Logan Obrigewitch

Christian Smith

Colton Steiner

Nicholas Vetter

Benjamin Wanner


Diocese of Crookston

Michael Arey

Mark Miller

Samuel Hurst

Joshua Johnson

John Wilebski


Diocese of Duluth

Daniel Hammer

Matthew Miller

Trevor Peterson

Peter Specht

Jacob Toma

Nathan Young


Diocese of Fargo

Riley Durkin

Robert Foertsch

Jered Grossman

Devan Hirning

Zachary Howick

Jasper Keller

Matthew Kensok

Quinn Krebs

Joseph Littlefield

Kevin Lorsung

Francis Reineke, FMI

Matthew Samson

Chris Savageau

Brendon Schneibel

Eric Seitz

Seth Skjervheim

Taylor Ternes


Diocese of La Crosse

Matthew Bowe

Daniel Buchal

Jared Clements

John Duranso

Philip Grygleski

Brandon Guenther

Ethan Hokamp

Alex Kren

Eric Mashak

David Nowicki

Joseph Pyka

John Regnier

Timothy Reither

Francis Reineke, FMI

Joseph Richards

Arturo Vigueras

Daniel Williams

Isaac Wolfe

John Zweber


Diocese of Madison

Barry Meinholz


Diocese of New Ulm

Joshua Bot

Nathan Hansen

John Hayes

James Herzog

Shawn Polman

Samuel Rosemeier

Tanner Thooft


Diocese of Rapid City

Robert Kinyon

Andrew Sullivan

Maxwell Vetch


Diocese of Sioux City

Zach Jones

Timothy Pick

Thomas Wilson


Diocese of Sioux Falls

Nicholas Ahrens

Nathan Allen

Timothy Coney

Jacob Doty

Michael Kapperman

Anthony Klein

Mitchell McLaughlin

Scott Miller

Andrew Mullaney

Jonah Murtha

Nolen Langrock

Thomas Rausch

Jeffrey Schulte

Christopher Tibbetts


Diocese of St. Cloud

Richard Aubol

Mark Botzet

Patrick Hoeft

Brady Keller

Daniel Ruprecht

Gregory Sauer

Thomas Skaja

Kevin Soenneker

Steven Wielenberg


Diocese of Superior

Isaiah Schick

Joseph Stefancin

Dan Tracy


Diocese of Winona-Rochester

Riley Becher

Michael Churchill

Jordan Danielson

Nicholas Gawarecki

Matt Koestler

David Kruse

Ezra Lippert

Isaiah Lippert

Mitchell Logeais

Teagan McDermott

Matthew Nordquist

Matthew Wagner

Timothy Welch

Adam Worm