One of the most enlightening conversations I have had as a priest included me being asked the question “What do you want the students being prepared for Confirmation to know when they get confirmed?” I responded, “I want them to love the Sacramental life of the Church, to desire to pray, to desire greatness, and to be missionary.” The person I was talking with said “I think we also want them to build community.” I agree. Then we realized we didn’t want these aspects just for students in Confirmation but for all our students in faith formation classes and in fact for all our parishioners. While I have tweaked the wording of some of these aspects, they remain as the foundation for a vision for parish growth.
As I was learning about the area in Shiocton and Stephensville and recognizing the high percentage of families that live in the area, I realized it was important to also include families in a specific in this vision. When I met with the parish leadership of St. Denis & St. Patrick in May, they agreed that it was a good vision and talked about how they saw different parts of your parish life already living out this vision. It was great for me to know that you believed that vision could work here and that it was already moving, and that they wouldn’t be starting from ground zero.
You will probably hear me touch on these areas for growth often. I would love to know how are you already living them out? Which one do you think is the most important? Is there anything missing from the list?
Vision for Growth
Form Faith Filled Families
Love the Sacramental Life of the Church
Desire to Pray
Grow in Community