Monday Message, September 20, 2021
A new day has dawned in the Diocese of Bridgeport as we celebrate the first day of the Institute for Catholic Formation. Read all about it here and, over the next several days, see the transformation on our website.
Tomorrow is our next Parish Check In. Find the link here. We will be talking about sacramental requirements for families, the intersection of Catholic schools, and the like. This conversation is especially important for those working on curriculum guidelines.
Several of you have asked about diocesan guidelines regarding Covid. The suggestion right now is that you follow your local town’s guidelines, but I realize those are more severe in some cases than you are able to maintain. To that end, consider this response I gave to one parish last week:
- In response to a catechist that refuses to be vaccinated: If a person does not wish to be vaccinated, why would they want to be a catechist and spend time in close proximity to young people (especially those under 12 who cannot be vaccinated)? This person should reconsider both the vaccine and serving in this role.
- In response to masks: I would recommend abiding by the local mask mandates, required everyone to wear masks indoors.
- In response to government orders: The governor issues an executive order saying that anyone who works in or “frequents” a public or nonpublic school is required to vaccinate or get tested weekly. I would think that faith formation is more church activity than “school” so the mandate would not apply.
Save the following dates please:
- Catechetical Summit II – February 23 – 10 am to 2pm
- Bishop Meeting with Catechists –
- Wed., April 6 at 6pm
- Sat., March 12 at 9:30 am
- June 24 – lunchtime – World Meeting of Families local celebration
Several of you asked for the Bishop’s Come Home video so you can show it at your parent gatherings. That video can be found here.
The RCIA Collaborative will host an informational webinar this week. Please shoot me an email if you would like to join.
A few spaces remain for the free Evangelus offer. Email and text all your students in grades, groups, etc. for free for a year. Please shoot me an email if you are interested.
As was mentioned on the call two weeks ago, we are working on an online directory for faith formation leaders. Please complete this survey before 9/25 so the updates can be made in the directory. It will take you about five minutes.
Last Thursday, six people gathered for our face-to-face quarterly meeting which (you) the faith formation leaders specifically requested. It made me wonder whether we are still stuck in Zoom-land, if people say they want face-to-face but really would rather enjoy the comfort of not leaving home or office, or perhaps if the timing was just bad. It’ll be easy to make excuses about how busy we are, but as one attendee put it, that’s exactly the reason we should attend these things.
For those who did attend, I do not believe they were disappointed. Katherine gave a remarkable presentation and encouraged us to spend time in prayer each day, reflecting on why we do what we do – and why we do it the way we do it. There was a wonderful conversation about the experiences of the last several months and a chance for all of us to pray through our grief and our collective loss.
There was also one moment that stuck out for me. Katherine asked everyone to recommend a restaurant. Nothing fancy, but somewhere she should go whilst in town. What followed was a great conversation about Italian food, a little cafe, the best dessert in town, amazing pub food, great atmosphere, and on and on.
Katherine then asked how many people would talk about our parishes and our faith formation programs with such excitement.
How many, she asked would talk about how welcoming we are, how hospitable we are, how enthusiastic we are about what we do? Does anyone tell their friends about our parish?
You get the point. Perhaps this week as we prepare to welcome families back home to our parishes, we can spend time making sure it’s a home worth coming back to.