Our fiscal year has begun, and once again I am asking each of you to participate in the financial planning process of St. Anthony’s through our annual Parish Offertory Program. Plain and simple, it’s the best form of financial stewardship we know about. By asking parishioners to contemplate and commit to giving to the parish, we can make informed decisions about the present and plan for the future.
At all Masses on the weekend of October 22-23, I will ask each parish household to make a specific commitment to weekly offertory giving. The involvement on that weekend, and the follow-up process to contact those who do not respond, will stress the necessity of having every household contribute regularly using “Sunday envelopes.” This will allow us to plan our financial expectations for the year ahead.
This annual process does not simply ask for an increase in giving. Rather, it asks each of us prayerfully to: 1. consider what God has given to us, 2. decide if what we return each weekend is enough, too much, or not enough, and then, 3. decide whether to increase, decrease or continue the commitment we are currently making.
This year, we are expanding the reflection to include other ways you may feel called to serve that do not necessarily include money. Stewardship is a more holistic way of reflecting upon our response to God’s call in our lives. It involves not only money, but also how we give of our time and talent.
I hope that each of us will accept the call to reflect upon whether our financial support and other gifts represent an adequate thanksgiving for the many blessings God has bestowed upon us. If together we join in this planning process and project our support for the year ahead, St. Anthony’s can continue to expect a very bright future for years to come.
If you have any questions about this program or our budget, please call the parish office, and I will be happy to answer them. Then, please respond to this request with charity and love.
Fr. William Holtzinger