Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Greetings of peace from Assisi the home of our patron St. Francis as well as St. Clare.  I have the great joy of celebrating the Eucharist with 47 parishioners in Assisi this weekend at the tomb of Francis and also on the hilltop hermitage retreat where Francis would escape for contemplative moments of prayer.  Earlier this week we prayed at the Franciscan shrine of St. Anthony of Padua and St. Mark’s in Venice.  Later this week we journey to Rome for an audience with Pope Francis.  It is a joy to be here!

In late August we began our Annual Offertory Appeal. This is an opportunity for each of us to renew our annual covenant to St. Francis of Assisi as we are asked for our continued full and active participation in the life of our parish by thoughtful, prayerful financial support through our pledge to the Annual Offertory Appeal. By your ongoing generous support, we continue to be faithful to our mission of growing in Holiness, offering Hope to those who hunger for human dignity, and extending Hospitality to all.

Many of you have already begun to reflect upon your tithe to the church for the coming year and have sent in your pledge cards.  Thank you!  I am particularly grateful to those who have taken the next step in your stewardship journey in tithing a portion of your treasure to our Church. Thank you for your stewardship which enables all of our pastoral ministries, like our liturgical ministries, Faith Formation, RCIA, and so many more. They enable our many outreach ministries that help eliminate homeless and feed the hungry, literally putting the corporal works of mercy into action.  The fact that we make pledges lets the parish tally the projected offertory income for the year so that expenses can be properly planned and not exceed income.

These pledges are also a good thing for each of us. They present an opportunity for us to consider our attitude about money:  for money is a spiritual subject. They give us a chance to pray about it and make a gift that is proportional to our ability.  Your gift is needed by our parish community.  We cannot live out our mission effectively without your partnership.  Thank you for making a sacrificial gift that will enable us to live out the gospel of Jesus Christ, both here in our pastoral ministries and through our outreach ministries which enable us to be a leaven of hope, faith, and love in our wider community. Thank you for your continued generosity.

If you have not received a letter from me in the past weeks inviting you to make a pledge, it is because we do not have you registered as a parishioner.  You are invited to register and become a steward of our parish by making an offertory pledge.  To the many stewards of our parish who support the mission of our community through your time, talent, and treasure please accept the thanks of our faith community.  I also encourage you to participate in our Automatic Bank Draft program as a safe and convenient method to meet your financial commitment to the parish.

In the peace of Christ,

Fr. Mark