The overall topic of this letter is “stewardship” – specifically stewardship of time and talent. Obviously, with COVID-19 restrictions and fear out there, we could not expect people to step up to any volunteer ministry that would have seemed imprudent. We closed down various ministries, in fact. Now that we are starting to open up and lighten restrictions, we want to take it step by step to see where we are at with various ministry and volunteer needs. What will we be able to do as we come back to “the new normal” at Fostoria St. Wendelin Parish? Here are a couple of notes on volunteerism and ministry (i.e., stewardship of time and talent):
– We got enough response for help with our mini-fest on August 21st that we are going to give it a try. Thank you to everybody who stepped up to chair the booths, and those who stepped up to offer help. I realize this is not the big festival we are used to having; and it is not on our parish campus. But, I think it is a fine start. I experienced enough energy and desire around the mini-fest that I was hoping we could try it; and now we have committed. Thanks again to everybody! If anybody out there has not responded to Tami Honse to express willingness to help in some capacity, please do so. Tami herself is taking on the setup; but only because she had several people say they would help. It would be great to have somebody work closely with her, in order to take on the setup chairmanship next year – whatever we determine the festival will look like next year. We have to start with the resources we have; and I think that is what we are doing with this mini-fest, connected to a couple of other local events.
– I met with the ladies of the Rosary Altar Society who have organized funeral luncheons for many years now. Thank the Lord for the service they have so faithfully rendered for all these years, right when bereaved families needed it most, after a funeral of a loved one. These ladies are heroes!; and I am so grateful for their service for so many years! Having said that, however, it is clear to them that it is time to give up leading this ministry. Although they are still all very young at heart, they have put on some age; and prudence says they ought not to be the ones to pick up the funeral luncheon ministry again – if we can pick it up at all. So, here's the question: Is there a new team of leaders who want to make the funeral luncheons happen? I learned that Terry Hoening has served funeral luncheons for some of the families who needed one during our parish COVID suspension of funeral luncheons. Should we inform families looking for a luncheon that they will have to find a solution other than our parish, because we no longer provide this ministry? Please contact Tami in the office if you and some friends want to take over the funeral luncheons.
– We have not been passing the offertory basket at Mass during COVID. Now that we are lifting restrictions, we still will not pass the basket, until we know we have enough ushers to make this happen. If you are willing to be put on the schedule of ushers for Mass, please contact Tami in the office. I hope to have an enrichment session for ushers and greeters, once we get them back up and running. So, we would love to have a couple greeters back at each Mass as well. Please contact Tami in the office, if you are willing to be put on the greeters schedule.
– Our new live streaming camera was installed some months ago; and then only this past week we finally got the CPU and the laptop required to run the new camera. We are waiting for the final loading of software and finishing touches, before we move to that new system. Once we have that system up and running, we'll move the confessional back to its original room, and we'll use the adoration room as a place for the rocking chairs and anybody needing a bit more of a buffered sound situation in order to participate in Mass. We are in need of some more people to run the live streaming for regularly scheduled Masses and funerals. It should be pretty easy; and you will have a couple more features to make your work feel a bit more professional! The camera will have a few zoom and pan settings for the various parts of the Mass; i.e., you will have the capacity to zoom in on the ambo during readings and homily, the altar during the Eucharistic prayer, the presider's chair for the opening and closing rites. (Will I now need a Hollywood makeover, so that I look better when the camera zooms in?!) Please contact Anthony Gallina to volunteer to help with this important role.
So, there are some needs in the area of stewardship of talent and time. As always, thanks so much to everybody already doing volunteer work and ministries for the parish! We have a lot of very generous parishioners! We simply cannot run the parish without you; and I appreciate you so much!
Have a blessed week!
In cordibus Iesu et Mariae et Iosephus,