Stewardship of Ministry
Stewardship of Ministry
We Build a Hopeful Future, Serving as Christ’s Church
Later this season, we will begin the Total Stewardship effort focused on service, the Stewardship of Ministry. St. Paul celebrated the gifts God has granted every Catholic parishioner, talents and abilities we are called to “exercise” for the blessing of all. To the honor of Christ Jesus, we minister faithfully to ensure blessings in our communities today and to build A Future Full of Hope. During this campaign, every parishioner will have the chance to make commitments regarding service through our parish. Please begin thinking about your own individual commitment to the ministries of your parish.
“We, though many, are one body in Christ and individually parts of one another,” Paul wrote the Church in Rome. We offer our “bodies as a living sacrifice” (Romans 12:1), “offer God a sacrifice of praise” (Hebrews 13:15), “do not forget to do good” (Hebrews 13:16), and give to support others’ needs, making sure we “share with others” (Hebrews 13:16). Most significantly, each parishioner serves, in the power of the Spirit, as “a minister of Christ Jesus.”
To Build a Hopeful Future, We Serve Others
Our Stewardship of Ministry emphasis will begin soon. Please planned your level of participation, choosing the parish ministries in which you’d most like to serve. Everyone has received gifts and abilities from God, so each of us has the opportunity to minister to others. With a commitment to build A Future Full of Hope, we serve God by serving others.
St. Peter wrote, “Offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 2:5b). In his letter to the New Testament church at Rome, St. Paul noted our call extends to our fellow parishioners and to those outside the Church: “Contribute to the needs of the holy ones, exercise hospitality. Bless those who persecute you, bless and do not curse them” (Romans 12:13-14). When we offer ourselves— our very bodies—to serve others in our home, our parish, and in the greater community, we honor Christ. We give ourselves to ensure A Future Full of Hope.
A Hopeful Future Is Ensured by God’s Call to Serve
Significant ministry experiences are rooted in our gratitude for God’s blessings and the Lord’s call for us follow a plan to build A Future Full of Hope. This is an ideal time to begin thinking about ways you might invest your gifts, talents and interests in the lives of others. Please ask how you might serve, and begin to watch for needs in your parish community.
We invest our gifts and talents in ministry and address the needs of others, mindful that affirming God’s call to serve them honors him. “Your light must shine before others,” Jesus taught, “that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Heavenly Father” (Matthew 5:16). Do so in humility. “I tell everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than one ought to think, but to think soberly, each according to the measure of faith that God has apportioned” (Romans 12:3). Whether our service is public or private, overt or unnoticed, we serve to the glory of God, ministering in the name of Jesus, that we might affirm A Future Full of Hope.
Shaping a Future Full of Hope, We Perform Good Works
Our Stewardship of Ministry campaign encourages us to consider the needs of other people—fellow parishioners in our Catholic parish, but also those who live in the surrounding community—each one worthy of our ministry focus. This may be your first opportunity to become more involved. When you offer your good works on Christ’s behalf, you honor the call of baptism that initiated your Catholic journey. Just as others have done for us, we reach out and we touch those in need. Together with the faithful from every corner of our Catholic culture, we reach communities looking for love and hope. Shaping A Future Full of Hope, we honor Christ as we minister.
St. Paul wrote of the good works we offer in the name of Jesus Christ, and he affirmed an attitude of service in our ministry efforts: “Since we have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us exercise them: if prophecy, in proportion to the faith; if ministry, in ministering; if one is a teacher, in teaching; if one exhorts, in exhortation; if one contributes, in generosity; if one is over others, with diligence; if one does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness” (Romans 12:6-8). We build A Future Full of Hope when we serve God faithfully today.
As We Minister in the Hope of Glory, Others Take Note
This Sunday, we observe our celebratory Stewardship of Ministry service, inviting every parishioner to return completed Stewardship of Ministry commitment cards with the offertory collection or drop them at the Pastoral Center. As we look to another season of affirming Catholic ministry, we honor your involvement and your desire to serve the Lord Jesus as we build A Future Full of Hope in his name. We follow the example of our spiritual leaders and take every opportunity to extend the spread of the Gospel to all those in need of Christ’s love, believing in the hope of evangelization and mission.
“The Church is meant to be a Church which evangelizes, goes out to encounter humanity, proclaims the liberating word of the Gospel, heals people’s spiritual and physical wounds with the grace of God, and offers relief to the poor and the suffering,” Pope Francis offered several years ago (March 29, 2015 Homily). “Be concerned for what is noble in the sight of all,” St Paul taught us (Romans 12:17b). For generations, the Church has extended the hope of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to a world in need. When we engage in mission efforts and evangelization programs, we offer the saving grace of Christ and invite others to help us build A Future Full of Hope. Please join us as we serve in the power of the Spirit.
From the Pastor:
We celebrate St. Pauls’ guidance to his spiritual son, St. Timothy: “Train yourself for devotion. While physical training is of limited value, devotion is valuable in every respect, since it holds a promise of life both for the present and for the future. This saying is trustworthy and deserves full acceptance. For we toil and struggle, because we have set our hope on the living God” (1 Tim 4: 7-10). Our hope is in the living God, and we know you affirm the value of shared involvement.
Maybe your gifts are demonstrative and public – you lead committees, you teach, you serve as a liturgist or you direct the building of new facilities. Your gifts could also be demonstrated with few even knowing about it: you mentor a trouble teen, you visit the sick in the hospital, you send notes of encouragement, or you set up chairs long before others arrive. In our cluster, ministry roles are almost too numerous to count. Thanks to faithful parishioners, the work is done for the glory of God we serve. There is certainly a role for you to be a part of. God has gifted you to serve him, your fellow parishioners, and all those who look to our parish for direction, encouragement and assistance. God has called you and we need you.
Please join with other parishioners and offer yourself in service by making a pray full and heartfelt commitment to one of the many ministries our cluster provides to the people of East St. James.
Your servant in Christ,