Engagement or Encounter

Why aren’t people coming to Mass? I’m going to list some reasons I hear from family, friends, co-workers, parish surveys, articles, and people I follow on the internet. COVID-19 has exacerbated this issue, but it’s not the only reason why people are staying away from Mass. So here are the reasons I’ve heard:

Our Mission Has Not Changed

Nathan writes from his own experience as a convert (the first Catholic in his family), a bi-racial man, an US Army Ranger, and man of faith in active ministry. He helps me answer a question I’ve been asking over the past six weeks – “What should the Church being doing right now?” // I hope you’ll appreciate this words as much as I did today.

The Family Room

What room do you spend the most time in at your home? I’m going to guess your answer is either the kitchen or the living room (or the family room). The family room is the heart of the home where the family comes together at the end of the day to laugh, bond, talk, watch tv, play games, and more. Imagine now that your parish has a family room where you can sit to rest, catch up, and come together. What a dream!

Listening with the Intent to Learn

A few weeks ago I spoke with a friend of mine who said, “Katie, I feel like I’ve been asked to choose between being authentically Catholic and Black. I’m not going to choose anymore between being Black and being authentically Catholic.” The rest of the conversation I had with her has spurred me on to read and listen more to people whose stories and experiences are different than mine.

Back to Why

Have you ever thought about “WHY your parish exists?” Why is there a Church on that corner? What benefit does it bring? What would be lost if it closed or never existed? My parish has been reopen for Mass for over a month now, but we are still closed for events and activities – and probably will be for awhile. I think many of you are in the same situation as us, or you’re considering opening in the next few weeks.

Change Is Hard

Catholics love change. Ha! In opposite land maybe. We love Tradition, it’s literally one of the pillars that we’re built upon: Scripture and Tradition. Even thought we don’t love change, we are capable of it. We’re all capable of change, but did you know that we have different styles of change?

Hosting a Book Club

If you’ve been around here any length of time, then you know I love a good book club. I think books (fiction and non-fiction) can help us understand ourselves and others better. When we understand each other, we can establish stronger relationships with fellow parishioners, neighbors, friends, and the Lord. That’s why I’m so excited to share with you about the New Hope Book Club from OSV.

Graces Abound

I found this image from a tweet a few weeks back and paused before sharing. Why? Because I didn’t think we were in a place to think about the graces of this season yet. I wasn’t at least. I wish I had been though. I wish I’d had a more positive, long-term outlook – but, truthfully, I was just getting by day-by-day, week-by-week.

Reflecting on Being Back

Every state and diocese is at a different place in their phased reopening. I’ve been back at Mass for a few weeks now, and we’re even back to our normal Daily Mass schedule, which is a blessing for me. A lunchtime Mass fits much better into my schedule than a 9 am Mass, although I was able to rearrange things most days of the week.

Challenges for Youth

I saw this youth ministry effort a few weeks ago, and if you haven’t done something creative for youth ministry, now is the time to get started! Use the summer to re-engage the teens at the parish!