Monday, September 19, 2005

Cluster Is Not Just Chocolate With Nougat And Nuts

This item from the St. Al's September 18, 2005 bulletin [PDF p. 5] explains.
No, to cluster in parish jargon is to cooperate with one's neighboring parishes in order to broaden ministry ... to go beyond parish boundaries! It is to cooperate and collaborate on projects to utilize human energies better, to capitalize on space better and to provide better ministry to a broader group of people. It means to cross pollinate with ideas and efforts. It is to move beyond the parochial church, the tight familiar family church and to broaden the scope of mission and ministry with other parishes.

To boldly go where no parish has gone before! Perhaps this means that someday we will know as much about what's happening at a neighboring parish as we can know about what's happening on Mars by visiting the NASA web site.
The concept is somewhat new for us, but important as we look at the future of parish life.

Somewhat new? The parish cluster was talked about as an established fact back when I joined the parish council, almost ten years ago. There must be some time dilation effects localized in the meeting rooms and offices so that it seems like only yesterday to the council, committees and staff.
Which parishes are our cluster parishes? Well, the churches nearest us: St. John the Evangelist, St. Martin of Tours, St. Mary and St. Alphonsus.

After all this background, you might expect at this point an account of what clustering has accomplished. Instead ...
Patricia Lynch, graphic artist and designer, thought it would be nice if the four parish cluster in the 16th District of the diocese had a logo, an identifying symbol and so she put together the one shown here: a tree with a dove taking flight. The tree represents the park-like land in our area, the farms, the fruit trees and orchards. The dove ... the spirit of God taking flight in our midst. The waters are baptismal images of life and movement.

So that's what's been holding us back from collaboration; the lack of a logo?
And, periodically you will see it on flyers for events in which the four parishes share in ministry ... part of the way we will CLUSTER!

If ten or more years means new, periodically could be a long, long time.

P.S. If I commissioned a logo with a dove, I'd ask that it be based on this.


Blogger Dad29 said...

Let's not go to the military use of the adjective 'cluster', usually combined with a noun/verb...

It might be too close to the reality.

9:24 AM  

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