Friday, December 2, 2011

Co-Founder of Major U.S. Catholic Charity Dies

Bud Hentzen, co-founder of Kansas City based charity Christian Foundation for Children and Aging (CFCA), died November 30. The 30 year old charity he helped found has served more than 650,000 children and aging through their tremendously successful sponsorship program which matches donors with individual children and other beneficiaries worldwide.

Hentzen was 83 and news of his death in Wichita was sent out today by CFCA’s Carlos Casas.

CFCA has a low-profile compared to other well-known Catholic and Christian charities, but it has grown to be one of the largest because of the trust its sponsors have in the organization and the loyalty they continuously prove to deserve.

Hentzen was a tremendous Catholic – K of C, Serra, Holy Sepulchre, 9 kids and 52 grand and great grandkids. May he rest in peace and may his efforts continue to prosper to the benefit of God’s children in need. In lieu of flowers, please join CFCA. Instructions are in the release below:

CFCA co-founder Bud Hentzen dies at 83

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (Dec.2, 2011) — Christian Foundation for Children and Aging (CFCA), a lay Catholic organization based in Kansas City, Kan., is mourning the passing of co-founder Bernard A. “Bud” Hentzen. Hentzen died Nov. 30, 2011, in Wichita. He was 83.

Hentzen, along with three siblings, CFCA President Bob Hentzen, the late Jim Hentzen and Nadine Pearce, and their friend, the late Jerry Tolle, founded CFCA in 1981 to help provide much-needed assistance to families living in extreme poverty in developing countries.

"Bud was the face of CFCA to many of the church institutions — Catholic Press Association, Knights of Columbus, Serra Club," said Scott Wasserman, chief governing officer of the CFCA governing board.

Through the years, Hentzen remained an active member of CFCA and recently traveled to Kansas City to attend a board meeting and celebrate the organization’s 30th anniversary.

Hentzen served CFCA in various capacities, most recently as director emeritus on the governing board. His contributions helped the organization grow from a small home-based charity into one of the 200 largest U.S. nonprofit organizations listed by Forbes. Since CFCA’s founding, sponsors and donors have contributed more than $1 billion in total revenue, resulting in more than 650,000 children, youth and aging persons and their families being served through the sponsorship program.

Hentzen was an active member of the Wichita community through his involvement in various local organizations, including Catholic organizations such as the Knights of Columbus, Serra Club and Knights of the Holy Sepulchre, a pontifical society entrusted with preserving Christian sites in the Holy Land.

Hentzen is survived by his wife, Joanne Wilkes Hentzen; nine children; and 52 grandchildren and great-grandchildren. A daughter, Kitty Bircher, preceded him in death.

A funeral Mass for Hentzen will be held at 10 a.m. Monday, Dec. 5, at St. Jude Catholic Church in Wichita.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions to CFCA. Donations can be made directly through the CFCA website at

Founded 1981 in Kansas City, CFCA is a lay Catholic, international nonprofit working with families living in poverty in 22 developing countries. Through the contributions of U.S.-based sponsors, CFCA’s Hope for a Family program provides basic resources and encouragement to children, their families and the elderly. To learn more, visit