Last weekend, I joined over 500 representatives from across the Archdiocese for the Synod. I was inspired by the faith of the participants and the presence of the Holy Spirit. It was wonderful to see the collaboration happening. I was blessed to have lunch with a synod representative from St. William’s. We discussed opportunities where we could collaborate and how we can support each other in sharing the life-saving message of Jesus Christ with our communities. Archbishop Hebda is looking at the feedback and will be writing a Pastoral Letter that will come out on the Feast of Christ the King in November.
Leadership Team Report
This past week we had a Parish Commission Leaders meeting and as part of preparing for that meeting, my Leadership Team prepares a report. I felt that it would be helpful for more parishioners to see that report so I have included my part of the report here in the parish email and you can access the rest of the report on our parish website. We will have part of the Leadership Team Report in the bulletin going forward on the weekends after our commission nights. If you are interested in serving on a commission and advising our staff and myself, please contact my assistant, Micki Hall, by calling the parish office. We can pray and discern where the Lord is calling you to use your gifts to build up His kingdom.
- Priestly Assignment. We are excited to welcome Father Joseph Nguyễn as our Parochial Vicar on June 15! He will be assisting me in fulfilling the priestly responsibilities here at SJB. I also plan to have him involved particularly in the school and our youth ministry program. He will also celebrate most of our Masses at care facilities and will serve as Chaplain of our Knights of Columbus Council #14250.
- Sisters’ Departure. The Dominican Sisters have officially returned to California. I’m very grateful for their service these past three years at Saint John the Baptist School and Church. Thank you to all the volunteers who helped clean the house that served as our convent—it will be on the market by the week of June 6.
- Chapel of the Angels Renovation. Thank you for your feedback at the May Commission meeting regarding the chapel renovation project. We are finalizing the design and planning to roll out how the design fulfills the vision in our upcoming communications. Watch for more information, including illustrations, next weekend, June 18 & 19.
- Thank you for living out of a Generous Spirit. As we come to the end of the school year and program year, I would like to thank all of our volunteers for the countless hours you put in to help people be Restored to Life. So much good work was completed this past year thanks to your efforts. People were Restored to Life here and grew in their relationship with God. People were Restored to Eternal Life and entered Heaven. God is working here powerfully, and it is a privilege to be a part of that. Thank you for your efforts to build up the Kingdom of God in New Brighton and beyond!
- Theme for 2022-2023. As we come out of the Synod after this weekend and look to the future, I sense we are being Called Forth by the Lord in our walk with Him. It may be that we need to grow in a certain area or a particular virtue, or maybe we are feeling called to step up and help with a ministry that we have not participated in. Having been Restored to Life, the Lord is calling us forth to share what we have received. As we look to the year ahead, please pray about how the Lord is calling you forth on the path of holiness.
- Staff Restructure. Beginning July 1, 2022, staff member, Jill Fink, will serve as Director of Catechesis at SJB. She has extensive experience in catechesis and has worked at St. Odilia’s and Epiphany as the Director of Faith Formation. With this promotion, she will supervise both youth ministry positions and the Sacramental Records Coordinator. She will work in close collaboration with Jessica Balzarini, who serves as the Director of Parish Life. I am grateful for Jessica’s leadership and generous spirit, especially in taking on new responsibilities at the end of last summer that allowed me to focus more on my priestly responsibilities. Given our growth with our new youth ministry position, as well as our desire to expand our relationship with Evangelical Catholic by hiring an additional Reach More Mission Coordinator, I have asked Jill to focus on catechesis and sacraments to allow Jessica to focus more on evangelization and mission, as these four parts to the discipleship process are expanding. I will supervise Jill, and she will also serve on my Leadership Team.
As the Father loves me, so also I love you!