A few years ago I met Ian Rutherford at the Catholic New Media Conference in San Antonio. I shared a bit about what I did professionally and how my job took me to Colorado Springs from time to time and he invited me and my whole family to stop by if we were ever in the area. So after a few months, I took him up on the offer and parked my family and our RV in front of his home. Our families had never met, and Ian and I barely knew each other, but when I parked our RV at their home, quickly introducing myself and our family to Paula and her children, we knew this would be a friendship that would last.
Ian and Paula have fully embraced God’s plan for their family, they have welcomed ten beautiful children into their family over the last thirteen years and Ian runs the family business guided by a sense of justice and with the highest of ethics. Ian’s business, Aquinas and More, is not just a Catholic store – it’s a way of life. They are unabashedly and authentically Catholic in their policies, products, and projects. Aquinas and More has a “Good Faith Guarantee” policy– making sure that their products are guaranteed to be in conformity with official Church teaching. And they have a strict Anti-China Policy in that they do not buy products manufactured in China, which has a sad history forced abortions and persecution of Christians.
Unfortunately, after ten years in business Aquinas and More, is in a dire financial situation and will have to close its doors unless they raise the funds necessary to right the ship. Their efforts have even appeared in a national news press release. Ian has outlined nine steps that will be taken to fix the financial issues at Aquinas and More if they are able reach their goal of $250,000 and I believe he is on the right track to bring the business back to profitability.
To Boycott or To Patronize?
I purchase quite a bit of Catholic reading material and even some Catholic gift items, I know where I can shop to find the cheapest prices, but those companies are not run by another committed Catholic family like Aquinas and More. Over the last year there has been boycott after boycott in which I could participate, and in some cases I have, but it is getting more and more difficult to find ethical alternatives to purchase the products and services that I desire or need. So I have adopted a new strategy. I choose to purchase from ethical companies when I have that opportunity. I choose to shop at Hobby Lobby and Chic-Fil-A, not because I am boycotting someone else, but because I am choosing a company that stands for something I believe in. I believe Aquinas and More is one such company. Amazon may be cheaper, but their CEO and the company itself support many causes I do not agree with. So I vote with my wallet, not to hurt Amazon (I am not naive enough to believe that my few purchases affect their bottom line in the least), but rather to support a good, Catholic owned and ethically run business like Aquinas and More.
By purchasing products at Aquinas and More, I am supporting a beautiful Catholic family of twelve, and the statue makers in South America, and publishing houses who produce their books with labor from my fellow Americans. I have the opportunity to make a difference and you do too. Consider supporting Ian Rutherford in continuing to provide a good service to the Catholic Community and to spreading the Good News to the ends of the earth.
Allen Hébert works in the Information Technology field. Allen and his wife Denae, have been married for over 25 years and they have been blessed with nine children. In 2013, Allen and his wife Denae, founded Your Holy Family ministries to promote God’s plan for family life through family retreats, workshops and family fun days. More information on their ministry can be found at www.YourHolyFamily.com