Update on improvements
This column is an update on how the staff and I continue to address the comments that parishioners offered in our February – March 2012 Parish Survey.
I read the results of the Survey and every individual comment offered, and hope to address each of these issues…with the desire that Saint Brigid stand and serve as a shining light of Christ’s love…a parish of excellence and holiness and compassionate care.
Some parishioners used the Survey’s “personal comments” section to speak about the “sense of coldness” or the sense that Saint Brigid is not a “welcoming parish”. Here are two steps we’ve taken to address these pastoral issues.
Longtime staff member, Teresa Rohmiller, has accepted additional leadership responsibilities. She now serves us as both our Director of Finance and as our new Director of Stewardship. Stewardship…caring for and managing the gifts of God according to God’s plan…this is something that every disciple of the Lord Jesus must come to understand as essential, in our obedience, in our faithfulness and in our communal life…asthe Church of Christ. To be a good steward means to be attentive and intentional in the way we accept the gifts of God and in the way we steward or manage these gifts…of our time (the gift of life), of the talents given to us (the unique gift of our personality) and of the treasure that we have earned (through an industry and work ethic that are in themselves gifts of God).
How are we to share the gifts given? I suggest that a meditation on Luke 12: 13-21 would serve us well. In short, the Lord Jesus is not about hoarding and storage barns and living on our wealth…as if we are in control of ourselves and our small part of the universe. NO. The Lord Jesus is all about opening our hearts to others.
So…if some think that our parish is cold…not welcoming….how do we counter-act this negative judgment? As good stewards, as disciples of Jesus of Nazareth…we share ourselves…a bit of our time…a portion of our talents…and welcome one another before Mass, before a class, before a gathering, at the mall or tennis courts…wherever.
Our faith-life is not some private component of our “self”. Our faith-life is the transforming power of God…transforming the self-centeredness that sin creates in us to the Image and Likeness that we were created to be. Jesus of Nazareth shows us what humanity is meant to look like…as He shared His Heart with us.
We are currently in the process of reorganizing our Welcome Ministry…
to make sure that each and every new parishioner knows how thankful we are for their presence and their participation…as members of the family of Saint Brigid.