Archbishop Murphy was a pioneer in the concept of stewardship. His passion and commitment to this concept was deep and unwavering. The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops appointed Archbishop Murphy to chair its Ad Hoc Committee on Stewardship in 1990. The archbishop described stewardship as follows in a speech given in Indianapolis in 1993, “Stewardship goes beyond the sharing of financial gifts that have been given to us. It asks us to do something far more difficult and that is to share ourselves. To share our time, our abilities, our ministry, our relationships. Stewardship is a call to be a holy people. It is a call to take the risk of walking with Jesus.”
In honor of his tireless efforts to advance the concept of stewardship, the International Catholic Stewardship Council created the Archbishop Thomas J. Murphy Award. This honor is given to a different parish each year for its outstanding work in Christian stewardship formation.