FROM THE OFFICE…
A Loss or Gain?
How has last week’s news been sitting with you? Did the news come as a surprise, or have you seen it coming? Are you fearing what we might lose as a parish, or excited about what we might gain? Are you anxious to get started thinking about change, or are you hoping we can put it off even longer?
Many of you know that I lost my parish home in Seattle to closure last year. My experience of that process led me to dread what was coming for the rest of the church. Closing parishes felt to me like cutting off the fingers and toes of the Body of Christ.
Instead, I am hopeful. At the convocation of pastors and parish leadership on January 18, we celebrated Mass and prayed for the Holy Spirit to enliven and guide our work. We connected with one another. Finally, we heard the message you heard last Sunday. The Archdiocese is no longer looking for limbs to cut off. Instead, our parishes are like small streams merging with one another on their journey to a large and powerful river. Merge with one another and into the river we must, or we risk stagnating or even drying up; for our social climate, it is a ‘changin’. We are better when we journey together.
We do not yet know what we will be leaving behind on this journey. We do know that we need all of us “in the water” together. What we are being asked to do is similar to what we were asked to do in 1991 when we created this parish called St. John the Baptist. No matter what we gain and what we lose in the process, in the end, we will have created something new.
For ongoing information about Partners in the Gospel, and answers to frequently asked questions, check our home page at sjtbcc.org.