Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
1 July 2012
Dear Friends in Christ,
1. As he was last year, Father Michael Cassabon will be with us during July, and I will once again take advantage of his presence to be away for a bit of rest and relaxation. While I’m on vacation, Father Cassabon will be responsible for my ordinary duties, and you can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or 864.679.4101. Enjoy the gifts Father Cassabon brings to the altar and pulpit!
2. We begin a new fiscal year today, and so we pause a moment to review our financial health. For the fiscal year just ended, we ran a deficit of 1.6% on the primary parish offertory, and while it is better to end with a small surplus than a small deficit, missing by 1.6% on an annual budget of over $1.5 million is not bad, particularly in times of continuing economic uncertainty. To put this in perspective, our deficit for the year was $26,281. Divided by the 52 weeks of the year, that means that we missed our goal by an average of $505 per week. And that means that if each active family in the parish had given only one dollar more each week, we would now have a surplus.
Our budget for the new fiscal year is essentially the same as last year, and so our goal for the primary offertory remains an average of $30,500 each week. Please take this opportunity to calculate your level of support for the new fiscal year, and as you make your financial commitment, please bear in mind the principles of stewardship. By Scriptural precept, ten percent of everything we have belongs to God and is to be used for the good of others, and the ten percent should be divided in this way: 5% of your income directly to the parish in the Sunday offertory, 1% of your income directly to the Bishop in the Bishop’s Stewardship Appeal, and the remaining 4% to charities of your choice, including parish capital campaigns and second collections.
3. Work on site preparation for the columbarium continues, and although you cannot see much obvious change since the removal of the old rectory, we are making great progress in preparing the ground to bear the great weight of the columbarium. The Diocese of Charleston has finally completed the review and revision of diocesan policies that held up this project for the past several months, and sometime in July all registered households will receive a mailing with information about the columbarium and how to purchase niches. As soon as we have sufficient funds on hand to pay for the construction costs, work will commence on the columbarium, the expanded plaza between the church and Sacred Heart Hall, and the badly needed sacristy extension. To accomplish all of this, your continued support of our capital campaign is essential, and if you have not yet made a gift to this year’s campaign, please do so as soon as possible. Thank you for your generous commitment to St. Mary’s.