Donor Spotlights

Loyal friends make impact

Though the landscape and the faces of Conception have changed over time, we are grateful for that which has remained the same: our mission of prayer, our dedication to seminary formation, and the loyal support of friends who have made such growth possible. 

Jim and Marnie Weidmaier of St. Joseph, Missouri, are two such friends. When our Partnering for Future Priests (PFP) event began as a dinner auction in 2009, they were among the first attendees, and they never missed a single event following. Now, in its current form as the virtual Day of Giving, the Weidmaiers continue to stay deeply involved in the PFP efforts.


“To be good stewards of God’s blessings means to share the blessings God has given us. We have enjoyed giving to Conception for more than 20 years because we care about the future of vocations and want to do all we can to support our future priests. We always enjoy our visits and have seen how our support has been used to carry out many different projects over the years, including new buildings, library renovations, and making the Abbey a more beautiful place to study and worship our Lord. Our prayers and support help Conception Abbey go forward to meet the need for young men to become future priests and pass on our faith to the next generation.” 

– Jim & Marnie Weidmaier

Learn more about our Partnering for Future Priests (PFP) event here.



God, Family, and Community

Matt and Sandy Miller place God at the forefront of everything they do—in business, in family, and in philanthropy. Their motto inspired by Matt’s father, Robert, echoes from the walls of their family business, the Miller Group, in Kansas City. The Miller Group was recognized in the Kansas City Business Journal as one of the “best places to work” in Kansas City, which Matt attributes to the role that their faith has built in their work culture. “When you get off our elevator at Miller Group, the wallpaper says God, Family, and Community. We make no bones about it that our faith is important, and that God comes first.”  

Matt and Sandy have been involved in serving the Church and community through C.O.R.E. (Celebrate Our Religious Enthusiastically), a nonprofit established by his father. It began as a small golf tournament to raise awareness for vocations and raise support for Conception Seminary College. Today, the organization has grown to involve hundreds of participants and volunteers as it hosts the Annual Priests Appreciation Day, honoring priests from the greater Kansas City area.  

“When I was a kid, Abbot Gregory used to come over to our house for dinner. He was a friend of my parents, and we still stay in touch to this day.” They recently visited Abbot Gregory in Rome, where he now serves as Abbot Primate of the Benedictine confederation. 

Matt volunteers his time at various Catholic organizations and has served on the Abbot’s Financial Council at Conception Abbey. “The different priests placed into my life have had a big impact on the development of my faith. These priests have made a tremendous sacrifice for all of us. And this is just a little way to give back.”

The Millers recently made a significant gift to Conception’s Brothers Living in Unity campaign. They join a list of donors who have helped make this project a reality. Any donors who have contributed $25,000 or more will be honored on a special plaque inside the new building’s entrance.

“I always say there’s no better investment than in the future of the priests that are going to serve us and minister to us, planting that seed in the ones that are going to help shape the development of our faith. It’s not just a five or 10 percent return—it comes back to you, and it comes back to everyone in the community, to help people you’ll never even meet. If you want to make a big impact on the future, help train the people who are going to shape the future.”

Learn more about our Brothers Living in Unity campaign here.