Sanctity of Life Granting Fund – In Memory of Marisa Petrella

In honor of the life-giving spirit of Marisa Petrella, a devoted Catholic Foundation of Michigan board member, the Sanctity of Life Endowed Granting Fund was established through the generosity of the Catholic Foundation staff and Board of Directors. The fund is dedicated to supporting creative programs that nurture a holistic reverence for life. This emphasis stems from the belief that every person is created in the image and likeness of God. 

Named in memory of Marisa, the Sanctity of Life Fund is a communal fund, open to gifts from anyone; it allows for gifts of any size to be compiled and increase the impact of these annual pro-life grants, for years to come. “It was my complete joy to know Marisa as a woman of faith, a leader and friend,” said Angela Moloney, President and CEO of the Catholic Foundation. “It is my prayer that through this gift of generosity that supports the seamless garment of life, the community will, ‘rejoice always… and give thanks’ for her life and ministry.”

The Sanctity of Life granting fund made two grant awards in 2022 to the following organizations:

  1.  The Lennon Pregnancy Center
    • Project Name: Buckle up for Safety
    • Project Purpose: Buckle up for Safety will instruct parents on properly installing a car seat into a private vehicle. After completing the safety class, clients receive a new car seat. According the Center, there are no other state-funded organizations where moms in need from the area can receive a new car seat.
    • Award Amount: $5,000
  2.  Selah’s Center of Hope
    • Project Name: Sanctitas Vitae
    • Project Purpose: Sanctitas Vitae project will help educate clients on Biblical values and fetal development and create discipleship opportunities for Church leadership. Utilizing the One Accord/Making Life Disciples program, the project will mobilize members to establish a team that can walk alongside women and men facing pregnancy decisions.
    • Award Amount:$2,500

Learn more about  the Buckle up for Safety project by watching the video below.


“We are estimating that the funds can help us provide car seats for 50 to 60 families that are registered with us,” shared Mariann Bolton, the director of the Lennon Pregnancy Center in Dearborn Heights. “We are so very grateful for this opportunity and would like to heartfully thank the Catholic Foundation for assisting our mission to protect the lives of our clients, their children and their unborn child.”

Our community is one that seeks to uphold all life, and you can join in these shared efforts by making a gift to The Sanctity of Life fund, in honor of Marisa, who championed life. You can also create a new fund in honor or memory of a loved one.

“It’s clear the Spirit is at work in what we’re doing, and you can’t hold the Spirit back! The Catholic Foundation of Michigan will exceed our expectations because God is working through us.”

Marisa Petrella, 2018 Article


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