Your Parish Journey
Introducing the stewardship way of life to your parish community begins with education. No “perfect” plan exists. Parishes are encouraged to use our stewardship guides and tailor the information provided to best suit your parish community. The guides explore educational methods as well as share suggestions on how to navigate your parish’s stewardship journey.
The Stewardship and Development Office is available to assist at any point during your journey. Through a series of meetings, a representative from our office will visit your parish to discuss stewardship and its benefit for the parish.
At the initial meeting, the pastor, as well as a few parish representatives, are in attendance. The basics of stewardship and the benefits that occur as a result are revealed. During this informational meeting, the core stewardship committee will be asked to develop a list of 5 – 10 potential committee members and select a date to hold a meeting to bring them together.
With a core stewardship committee in place at the second meeting, a discussion will include an introduction to the theological meaning of stewardship as well as an introduction to The Bishop’s 1992 Pastoral Letter. Committee members will be asked to read the Pastoral Letter and prepare for a group discussion at the next meeting.
The pastor, diocesan representative, and the Stewardship Committee are in attendance. Using a PowerPoint presentation, a discussion will focus on introducing stewardship and the benefits that will occur as a result. Responsibilities of the Stewardship Committee as well as an agenda for future meetings will also be discussed at this meeting. Stewardship Committee members will be asked to read the Bishop’s 1992 Pastoral Letter on Stewardship and prepare for a group discussion at the next meeting.
Stewardship Committee members and the pastor will discuss the Pastoral Letter at length along with the diocesan representative. Taking what they know, the committee will decide on the main objectives of the parish and begin to develop a timeline for a parish plan. “Stewardship Weekend” should be at the culmination of the initial timeline while small events can be planned in the interim to introduce the community to the Stewardship Committee and their purpose.
A complete list of available parish ministries will be finalized as well as a “wish list” of potential ministries that will enhance parish life. From the Stewardship Committee members, choose one or two individuals to assume the leadership position(s). With a list of ministry opportunities, select a date for the next meeting where educational strategies will be discussed.
Methods of education and available resources will be the focal point of this meeting. Compile a list of leaders of other parish ministries who can be invited to sit in on the next meeting. Leaders from other parish ministries will then be able to learn more about the work of the Stewardship Committee thus far and hear of future plans. This will be a good opportunity to open dialogue between the committee and other parish leaders. If the parish purpose is clear to everyone, it creates a receptive environment for stewardship. Encourage open lines of communication and support among all the groups and ministries.