A Message from the Pastor…………………….

A NEW BEGINNING—I don’t know about you, but each day for me—usually—is in fact a New Beginning. Some mornings I wake up optimistic about what’s ahead. Other days I wake feeling there are too many things undone, and I don’t know how I could do them all.

This year the Archdiocese has named our Annual Stewardship Awareness Season A New Beginning. It can be that for us, just as every day can be. It’s good to reflect, in the Stewardship Season, that all good things come from God, and we are sent to do His will. I’ll repeat these points from my recent letter:

  • We are rooted in prayer. Everything we have in life is a blessing from God. Consider beginning every day by thanking God for all He has given you – and you may soon find yourself talking with Him all day long!
  • We are committed to participation. You have a charism, a spiritual gift, which is given to us by the Holy Spirit. Spend time in prayer to discern the gifts the Holy Spirit has given to you – and then, let’s use them in strengthening our community!
  • We are called to generosity. God never asks anything of us that he has not already given. Jesus was God’s first fruits, the best of humanity, which He gave up for us. We are invited to share all of our gifts, including our money, with those around

This year’s Stewardship Awareness comes amidst the Archdiocesan planning process. Our spiritual need is unchanged, to return to God a generous portion of his gifts to us. And practically, the next few years won’t be any different in our need to provide well for our sacraments, school, and other services here. In fact our call last weekend to rebuild our savings through special donations is a special Stewardship focus this year, after Offertory and Time and Talent.

We’re now in the thick of this mini-season, Stewardship Awareness. This Sunday I will give the homily at all Masses, reflecting on this gratitude, and our response. This is not about our parish finances of expenses; we did that next week. (Thank you for your attention to that. It showed we’re in a strong position.) These weeks now are about our spiritual response to God’s generosity. Then you’ll receive a Covenant Card to indicate your gift of time and treasure to God through the parish, to return at Mass starting October 2. Spend some time in quiet prayer reflecting on how you will renew your stewardship covenant this year. Use the material we sent to guide your reflection. I hope you each take a few minutes in prayer to assess your ability to return to God a portion of your treasure in a new Offertory pledge, and your time in one of our ministries. (You could continue in one, jump into a new one, or get out of one you’ve done for awhile.)

*Obligations call for me to be away midweek the next two weeks. This coming week through Saturday is my annual retreat, required of us so our spirituality is deeply rooted. The following week, October 3 to Friday the 7, is our Priests’ Convocation, held every four years to renew our unity around the bishop. I’ll be here weekends. The weekday Mass schedule is pared down a bit again the second week. Fr. Tim will be here for any urgent needs.

Fr. Sebastian

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