by Martin Newland THE Annual Report of the Catholic Truth Society has expressed its thanks to its membership for bailing it out of a severe cash crisis, but is at the same time looking into the possibility of launching a million pound public appeal to ensure that its services are available into the next millennium. (Catholic Herald September 4 1987).
CTS General Secretary David Murphy rebuffed suggestions that the Society should sell its present headquarters in Victoria, London and relocate rather than launch another appeal.
"At its beginning it was a major objective of the Society to buy a proper HQ, at the centre of London, with access to a comprehensive postal system", said David Murphy. "This still applies today. We are the only direct publisher left which gives you a return on an order the day of ?? it."
Mr Murphy admitted that CTS would, because of its very nature, always be in financial difficulties. "We have always been in financial danger. We are not the Shell Corporation, and we insist on selling at the lowest conceivable price. It would be easy to sell up and get computers and extra staff, but we would have to raise our price to do it something that would go against our desire to be a charity."
CTS, which publishes numerous devotional, pastoral and theological pamphlets, prefers to draw on its membership for financial and practical help, explained David Murphy. At present the Society is in desperate need of 30 volunteers to help coordinate its proposed million pound appeal, and is calling on its members to "make the rounds of their richer friends and acquaintances to solicit funds for the Society's work. . ."
Last year's "Cash Crisis" report, in which CTS envisioned having to close down if its members did not come to its financial aid, was an unqualified success says the Annual Report. The figure for donations in 1986 leapt from £8,350 to £80,090 in 1987 and the income and expenditure account reveals that there was a surplus at the end of the year of £41,182 as against a loss the preceding year of £96,705.
"We'll never be in a position where we can just sit back and reap the rewards," said Mr Murphy. If we are to keep prices down and survive into the next century we must always seek help from our membership."