For the first time in three years, we have an authentic summer season. Families are traveling, concerts are in full swing, and people are making plans to visit friends and family they haven’t seen in a while. This also means that church attendance may be lower than normal during the prime summer months of July and August. Here we have come up with a few ideas on how to keep your parishioners engaged during the summer months, and how to make sure weekly offerings are coming in regularly. Keep reading to find out how!
“…‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’” Matthew 25:40
Upon reading the first time, it took me a bit to process what was being said. Is this meant to be a compliment or a lesson to learn? Then again, why can’t it be both? Think about your current daily life and if someone you know and respected said it to you. How would you react? It’s time we all begin to help others, slow down and not be so busy. We need to be out of our own heads and realize what all we have to be grateful for. Here are some ways you can implement this scripture into your everyday life.
The other week when I was at the gym, I noticed the church next door was having their annual carnival. Seeing all of the rides up, the concession stands, and all of the happy faces sure brought back plenty of memories from years past. It is nice to see the return to Church Carnival season, but there is a lot of behind the scenes work that goes into making it successful. Parish Giving would like to help! Here are some of the ways we can make your Carnival Season more successful!
Does anyone know how to be bored anymore? This is a question that enters my head quite a bit. We are a species that is always on the move. From home to work, then work to activities, then dinner and bed. Repeat this for five days straight. When Saturday morning comes around, we do not know what to do. Some of us are good at hitting the snooze button, while others need an invitation to do something. Well, I have a thought – Why is it good to be bored?
It takes a team to make things work. A team wins championships because they communicate – it’s not just because of their individual talent alone. Everyone has their place and job, and they come together and make it work. A parish is the same way. Each person has their role, but they need to support and listen to one another to make it work. You need the clergy, the administrative staff, and the parishioners to all work together to make the parish successful. This is how to keep your parish as a well-oiled machine:
The Heart and Soul of the Parish Community
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘what are you doing for others?’”. It is a good question to ask yourself – what are you doing for others? In this day and age volunteering seems to be done by two groups of people: those who are required to do it for school, and those who are retired with time on their hands. What about the rest of us? We say we want to, but never do. Here’s how we can change it – let’s volunteer!
I was looking at the back of my seeds packet the other day, and it looks as though I can start my garden. Each year I come up with a different technique to try and make sure all of my seedlings yield as much produce as possible. As many of us do, I start them in an individual pod, and then I have them make friends with one another once they start to blossom. Just like in life, the other plants help each other grow and blossom into something bigger and better. It is all about nurturing in nature.
As I mentioned in our previous blog, Cape May is the dining capital of New Jersey. A restaurant for everybody. Well, my watering hole when down there is the Mad Batter. Great live music every evening, extensive menu with food choices for everyone, and it’s just a great place to sit at the bar and meet new people. You never know where the conversation may lead.
Cape May is the dining capital of New Jersey for a reason. There are numerous restaurants to choose from, so each one has to do something special to attract new patrons. Many serve farm to table or offer fresh caught seafood. Others have large menus for those who have dietary restrictions such as gluten or dairy-free, and others have a small select menu to cater to those with a fine dining palate. The question is what keeps me coming back to the Pier House? The answer? Their Salmon BLT.
Shrimp Po’ Boy
Fish sandwiches have become part of many restaurants’ seasonal menus. Many look forward to devouring their first fish sandwich of the year, even if they are not Catholic. Different restaurants and fast-food joints compete for the top fish sandwich of the year always trying to out do the previous years sandwich. To me, most fast-food sandwiches taste the same – deep fried and salty. You can not taste the fish, and the buns are usually mediocre and soggy at best. That is why I choose to try local restaurants around me instead.
Albus Dumbledore is one of my favorite characters from the Harry Potter series. He was a man of great intellect and faith, but he was by no means perfect. He had flaws just like the rest of us which made him more likeable and relatable. One of his most popular quotes from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire was, “we must all face the choice between what is right and what is easy”. It is pretty similar in the choice of having faith or living in fear. The question is, how do we choose faith over fear?
Love is a very popular word this time of the year. With Valentine’s Day on Monday, we are a bit sweeter and gooier, like your favorite chocolate treat, than normal. But what happens after the holiday? Not only do we feel guilty about eating a chocolate heart, but we forget what love really means. That is why it is important to focus on unconditional love. Unconditional love helps you see the love within and without any condition. Here is how we found our unconditional love for the other 364 days of the year.