In order to be safe at Mass, we have to undertake a variety of different precautions from masks to hand sanitizer to disinfecting the pews to sitting six feet apart. For so many of you this time is just about surviving from one Sunday to the next. You might have even had a minor panic attack looking at that picture above with two people shaking hands! (I think it was taken pre-pandemic!)
As I write today, I’ve attended more than 25 Liturgies via a screen. As someone who can count on one hand the number of times I’ve missed Mass, in a Church, on a Sunday, this has been quite a strange season. I know most of you reading this are feeling the same attending Mass via live-stream. I’m so grateful for our priests and parishes who are working through the wobbliness and strangeness of this entire process. As our associate keeps saying, “It’s very strange to say Mass looking at an iPad.”
Communication has always been necessary as a parish, but it’s even more important now. While most parishioners receive their regular news via the weekly printed bulletin, they aren’t in the pews for Mass to receive it.
In the midst of an inability to celebrate public Masses and social distancing this week and in the coming weeks, I wanted to share some ideas for staying connected to parishioners. This is not exhaustive nor the only set of ideas out there, but I believe we can become a stronger community when we face this together without a sense of fear. In Scripture we are told, “Be Not Afraid” more than 365 times! Now is the time to show what our faith means to us, even if we are not gathering for weekly Mass.
Have you ever been on the outside of a conversation because you didn’t really understand the words people were using? This happens at OSV a lot because we use a lot of 3 letter acronyms: IOP, PVP, OLG, PCC … when we only use shorthand or ‘big words’ we leave people out! Let’s talk about what that might mean at your parish!
I read a lot of books – and some of them are good enough to share! This one definitely was so I got permission to give you all a full chapter for free!! Donna’s an expert communicator and marketer, her advice is not to be missed!
Most people would consider themselves excellent listeners. In my experience that’s not always the case. I find myself saying “I’m not sure you heard what I meant, let me try again” pretty frequently. I also find myself saying, “Did you mean ….?” a lot. It’s not just about intention, it’s about connection. How are we connecting to one another in the midst of our conversation?
Culture is made from conversations. How we relate to others happens through conversations. What if we completely changed the way we spoke to one another? Do you think we could transform the culture? I do! Let’s start transforming conversations!!
I might not have a talent for great graphic design, but I can point out things that aren’t working. Sometimes the simpler the better. Does this article need a rainbow title so people will read it? No. Should I have words flash and make noise on my website to get people to stay longer? Nope, you sure shouldn’t! Today’s edition of “Do This Not That” is about making a bulletin article stand out!
Why do relationships matter? Are they important? Should we focus on them as we share the Gospel? My recent trip to Maui really got me thinking about this.