Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
This weekend we close our Christmas season with the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord. We spent weeks preparing for and then celebrating the arrival of the infant Jesus into our world; and now, we have quickly moved forward to the beginning of His public ministry. Yes, in almost “light speed” fashion some thirty years have passed since the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem. Clearly, the Church is making a powerful statement: establish Jesus of Nazareth as the Christ, and then get on with His ministry.
Overshadowing the entire Advent/Christmas season is our preparation for Christ’s Second Coming at the end of time. We are reminded that we know not the hour or circumstances surrounding the Parousia; instead, we are told to not worry about such things and simply live the faith. The key question here is— how are we doing in managing the gifts of life and faith we have received? Just as Jesus embraced His Baptism and public ministry, we too are called to follow in His footsteps and embrace these wonderful gifts/responsibilities we have received.
January is the time for us to examine our communal and personal response:
1) Communal. At present our parish leaders and staff are reviewing the current program year and are planning for the future. What is working? Are there changes that are needed? How do we manage the time, talent and treasure of our parish? The schedule for this review is as follows:
a) Parish Council will be reviewing the current and future budgets during the month of January. They will then pass on their “vision” to the Finance Council.
b) Finance Council will then determine how our present and projected budget can manage this vision. What is possible?
c) Staff will work with their respective commissions and committees throughout this period to provide our parish leaders the information they need to do their planning.
d) The expectation is that this process will be completed in March.
2) Personal. This is the time for every parishioner to review their offering to the parish, as well as to get involved with the above communal planning process by sharing their thoughts with our parish leaders and staff. To assist you in this task, the 2015 Family Giving Statements will be mailed out to every parish home during January. Remember, we can only provide quality parish programming with the support of all parish families. Therefore, please review your offerings of time, talent and treasure for our church.
May God bless our efforts to continue the public ministry that Jesus began some two thousand years ago. Together we are building the kingdom. Be proud of our good work. Reflect on what is possible here at the Church of St. Edward. May each of us be proactive in doing our part.