January 27, 2019 (Pastor’s Corner)

I.  Planning for our future: We are in the early stages of creating a long-range plan which should encompass not only practical aspects such as “brick and mortar” and care of our facilities, but also our spiritual growth, our sense of community, parish leadership, and more. The first step is an online survey, which takes less than five minutes to complete, is available this week on our parish website. Everyone has a voice; WE WANT AND NEED your input! If you do not have computer or smart-phone access, we will provide a paper copy for you. Thank you for your participation and most of all for being a member of our parish family!

“One Body—Many Parts”

II. Catholic Schools Week, January 27-February 2, 2019: This year’s theme: “Learn. Serve. Lead. Succeed.” Our Owensboro Catholic Schools benefit all year round from the religious guidance, prayers, and support parishes provide. Saint Stephen Cathedral is proud that we have 100+ parishioners in our Catholic Schools K-12.  I thank parents for your decision and sacrifice. In addition to Sunday Mass, Catholic school parents are asked to serve in parish ministry, to ensure their children are also involved in some parish ministry, to be “good PR” for recruiting (over 95% of our parents are “happy” or “very happy” with our Catholic schools), and sacrificial giving (our Cathedral parish contributes $2700 for each student enrolled). It’s about faith! A big “shout out” of gratitude to all parishioners for your unfailing support of this significant ministry!

III. Ecumenism: We Are One through Baptism, “the aim of promoting unity among the world’s Christian Churches,” is our charge as disciples. Catholic means “universal”—we are all brothers and sisters in Christ, and we all belong to God—all of us. I invite you to a meal of fellowship in the Community Center at 5:30pm, followed by an Ecumencial Prayer Service at 7:00pm, this Sunday, January 27.  We will join with fellow Methodist, Lutheran, Presbyterian, Baptist to mention a few, to prayer as one people on a common journey.

IV.  Be a Catholic Man in a secular world: Annual Catholic Men’s Conference, Saturday, February 2, 2019 at the RiverPark Center. Don’t miss this great opportunity of presentations by gifted speakers, Kevin Reilly, Mike Michalak, and Dr. Edward Sri. Register and pay on line at www.kycatholic.com or pick up a brochure at the church doors or in the parish office. It’s not too late. If you can’t make the Conference, make this Friday night, 6:30pm, here at the Cathedral in the Community Center. We will host Dr. Edward Sri for a presentation on living a “Vibrant Faith: life in the midst of such a secular world.” This evening event is open to everyone, not just the guys! All ladies, welcome and bring a friend!

V.  India Bound!  The opportunity has offered itself for me to visit the country of Mahatma Gandhi, Taj Mahal, Ganges River, Red Fort (New Delhi), beaches of Goa, tea and spice plantations, tomb of St. Thomas, the body of St. Francis Xavier in Goa. And of course, the highlight will be visiting Fr. Sinoj Pynadath’s mother and family, as well as the family of Fr. Suneesh Mathew (do I ever have some stories)!  I will return to Owensboro on February 20 after twenty-two hours in the air! Let’s pray for one another!

VI.  February Birthdays: calling Aquarians and Pisces!  Since I will be gone during much of my birthday month of February (see above), I will host a party for all of us who celebrate February birthdays! Let’s celebrate the last day of February, 6:30pm-8:00ish, in our Cathedral Rectory. Circle Thursday the 28th on your calendar!