Pastor's Blog - March 15, 2015

Fourth Sunday of Lent

News and Notes:  Today, following the endorsement of the Parish Finance Councils, we will take up the first of two special second collections (called Winter Relief) to help us pay our astronomical bills for snow removal and repair of a number of leaks in the buildings of both parishes.  The next second collection for Winter Relief will take place on Palm Sunday, March 29.  As of February 22, St. Maria’s had spent $40,040 on snow plowing/shoveling with more bills pending.  The total budgeted amount for maintenance and grounds work (snow removal and landscaping) at SMG for the entire fiscal year was $34,282.  In addition, as of February 10, the 11 heating pipe and water line leaks in the SMG Church Hall had cost $8,352.07, with at least $4,000 in bills still to come.  At Our Lady’s, as of February 22, snow plowing/shoveling had cost $53,420 (a little over $10,000 of which was paid by OLA School) with bills still pending, including payments for breakup of ice dams and removal of snow on the roofs of OLA buildings.  The total budgeted amount for maintenance and grounds work at OLA for the entire fiscal year was $24,045.  The numbers say it all.  We are asking our parish families to help us pay these extraordinary expenses.  We are trying to raise $50,000 in each parish for this purpose.  Please be as generous as you can in responding to this need in your particular parish family.  Also on Palm Sunday, we will have registration for Religious Education classes in both parishes starting next Fall.  You can set your child’s schedule and help us prepare well for another year of Faith Formation by registering your children following the Masses on Palm Sunday weekend.  Thanks to Donna Delahanty, our Director of Parish Ministries, for organizing our Collaborative Lenten Mission.  It was well received and appreciated by all who attended.  Blessings to you in the week ahead!