Pastor's Blog - March 1, 2015

Second Sunday of Lent

News and Notes:  The relentless snowstorms and brutal cold this winter have taken a serious toll on our parish budgets.  Early on at OLA, we had to address leaks in the Church and School; more recently we have needed a front loader to move piles of snow to the back of the parking lot next to the Collaborative Offices.  At SMG, we have had to deal with 8 leaks, most of which have occurred in the Church Hall due to aging, corroding pipes.  Two blizzards and other heavy snowfalls now find us well past our snow removal budget in both parishes, with weeks remaining in the official winter season.  We have scheduled a Winter Relief Collection as a special second collection on Palm Sunday, March 29.  If you can make a donation earlier that date, please do so to your respective parish and help us pay these bills as soon as possible.    The financial situation at SMG is particularly acute, with our savings dwindling to a level that causes me concern.  We begin the 2015 Catholic Appeal this weekend.  This year’s Appeal is entitled “Living Our Faith Together.”  I invite you to join with me in making a generous pledge to help support the dozens of Central Ministries that serve the people of Eastern Massachusetts.  Once again this year, if we meet our parish’s particular fair share assessment, we will receive back 60% of the Catholic Appeal funds collected over that amount.  If we do not reach our assessment, we must pay the remainder out of our parish funds.  Last year, OLA parishioners contributed about $18,000 over their assessment; SMG parishioners fell short of their assessment by about $3,000.  Join us for our Collaborative Lenten Mission this weekend…and Lenten blessings to all of you