Thursday, March 22, 2007

Excerpted from Fr. Dave's Brother’s Eulogy

My post on Fr. Meinholz's funeral included a mention of something from his older brother's eulogy that's now quoted on page four of a recent St. Al's Sunday bulletin [5 pp. pdf]
So What?

Dave had a lot of plans for St. Alphonsus... his number one job was nurturing the St Alphonsus community... being part of a Christian Community is not simply attending Mass and filling out your envelope. It's giving of yourself for the community, to the community and to the communities concerns. It's sacrificing yourself for the greater good. Involve yourself in your Christian Community, Invest work for the greater good of the St Al's community, the Milwaukee Archdiocese, the Nation, the Catholic Church and the greater honor and glory of God. Let's continue to build our Christian community here into what it can and should be.

To put it another way, it's necessary to attend Sunday Mass and contribute money to support the parish, but not sufficient. The problem at St. Al's, though, is the parish continues to ask more from the declining number of parishioners who do something, rather than dealing with the problem of the growing percentage of parishioners who do nothing.

The parish Status Animarum [pdf] shows total parishioners increasing from 7,792 in 1995 to 8,817 in 2005. In that same period, Sunday Mass attendance fell from 2,950 (38%) to 2,344 (27%). While the report does not say how many parishioners put anything in the weekly envelope, the same page of the bulletin indicates giving is still below the budgeted amount. That budgeted amount for 2006-07 looks to be less than the $1,367,759 in the collections in 2001-02. Despite declining participation and flat contributions, the parish increased the financial burden with a multi-million dollar building expansion in 2001-2002. So even as a declining number of active parishioners have been taking on these increased burdens, the focus is on them doing more, not the declining numbers.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am offically 'checked out' of the American Catholic Church, and I consisder myself to be a good Roman Catholic(I observe the Liturgical Calender, homeschool my children's catechism, and we attend Mass at Gesu at 6 pm on Sunday for Holy Communion).

The American Catholic Church offers me very little. The exhippies who are still in charge read from the same playbook of that Liberation Theology Marxist crap...I have had it, no more, I refuse to contribute a dime to them and instead will take that money and give it prolife groups and buying my kids good Catholic books.


11:05 AM  
Blogger Dad29 said...

Mark is "out of the AmChurch," resents the ex-hippies, and GOES TO MASS AT GESU?

BTW, parish fundraising budgets are taking hits all over this year. Both St Luke's and St John's (Brookfield) are under their goals YTD.

2:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dad29, the 6 pm Mass on Sunday night at Gesu is the least offensive Mass in the music, no hand holding, simple NO Mass, with the Eucharist.

5:43 PM  
Blogger Terrence Berres said...

Anonymous, I understand you to be saying you're not finding your spiritual needs met by what is sometimes critiqued as the AmChurch. For example, as to music, Dad29 seems to prefer more than the "four hymn sandwich" while you prefer less. Let's give Gesu credit for not cramming every Mass and sacramental or prayer service into the same template.

4:44 PM  

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