Monsignor John Mitchell Memorial Scholarship Fund

Cardinal Justin Rigali, then Archbishop of Philadelphia, announced on Monday, March 3, 2008, that the Archdiocese of Philadelphia had received a bequest to fund a scholarship in honor of Monsignor John T. Mitchell. Monsignor Mitchell served as a priest of the Archdiocese from 1939 through 1981. During that time, he was the Pastor of Saint Ignatius of Loyola and Saint Francis de Sales Parishes in West Philadelphia, where he was known for his faithful ministry to African American Catholics. In light of this, the Monsignor Mitchell Scholarship Fund will support high school students in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia who are Catholic and African American, with academic ability and financial need. One (or more, if economically feasible) one-year scholarship(s), up to $2,500, will be awarded annually based upon the determination of the Selection Committee. Student recipients must reapply each year.

Application Deadline – April 30, 2023
We strongly encourage you to use our online application process to avoid any late submissions due to the U.S. Mail.

Criteria for selection:

  • African American Roman Catholic.
  • Registered and active at a parish within the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.
  • Academic Excellence – with at least a cumulative “B” average – or the numerical equivalent thereof – at the time of the scholarship award.
  • Financial Need – as determined by a completed FACTS application
  • Attend or desire to attend a Roman Catholic High School – an initial emphasis for candidate selection will be to attend an Archdiocesan High School, as per the Trust.

Application requirements:

  • Meet all the criteria for selection as listed above.
  • The family must be known or be active, practicing African American Catholics (attend Church regularly) and in good standing. A letter of recommendation from your pastor is required.
  • The criteria for academic excellence requires at least a cumulative “B” average (or the numerical equivalent thereof) utilizing the final grades of the 7th grade and the second trimester of the 8th grade. If applicant is a high school student, the final grades of the previous academic year as well as the first semester grades of the current school year must be stated. The numerical equivalent for a “B” grade is 84 to 89. A letter of recommendation from your teacher is required.
  • Student(s) must submit an essay addressing their desire to attend or continue at a Roman Catholic High School. The student is to write an essay of 500 words or less describing the following:
    • Why he/she thinks he/she qualifies for the opportunity to be a recipient of the Monsignor Mitchell Scholarship.
    • What a scholarship to a Roman Catholic High School in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia would mean to him/her and his/her family.
    • How will a Catholic High School education help him/her now and in the future better serve his/her church and community?
  • In a letter to the Selection Committee, the parent or guardian is to respond to the following:
    • Explain the need of your family for a Monsignor John T. Mitchell Memorial Trust Fund Scholarship.
    • Explain your desire to continue a Catholic education for your child/children and the sacrifices you make to do so;
    • List specific activities you have been involved with in your parish or parish school during the past year.

If awarded scholarship students must:

  • Student(s) agree to do a minimum of 30 hours service as described in the criteria each year of scholarship. (The Office for Black Catholics will provide a form to document this service.)
    • Commitment to Community Service – service must be approved and consist of at least 30 hours per academic year.
  • 10 hours of service within your local community.
  • 10 hours of service within your school community.
  • 5 hours of service to the Office for Black Catholics.
  • 5 hours of service to your parish church (Serving as an altar server or lector are not included).


    Submit a tuition assistance application through FACTS Grant and Aid on or before April 15, 2023 (this includes uploading a copy of your 2022 tax return). Click here to apply for FACTS.

    Add attachments below. Application must include:

    • Pastor’s Letter verifying that the family unit must be known or be active, practicing African American Catholics (attend Church regularly) and in good standing. Max file size: 3MB

    • For incoming High School Freshmen only, please include copies of academic records including test results, and 7th and 8th grade record cards. Max file size: 3MB

    • Teacher Recommendation Max file size: 3MB

    • Student Essay Max file size: 3MB

    • Parent Letter Max file size: 3MB

    We acknowledge that all information provided in this application is true, complete, and accurate. I/We acknowledge that I/we understand the requirements of this application if awarded.