New Pastoral Plan for St. Anthony Claret
My Dear Friends in Christ,
I am grateful that Bishop Kevin Vann has appointed me Pastor of St. Anthony Claret since July 1, 2017. I am also thankful for the prayers and support that I have received from each of you as faithful parishioners of our beloved parish. As I begin my new mission as your Pastor with the special Mass of Installation on October 1st, I would like to share with all of you some of my reflections for a proposed new Pastoral Plan which I believe would make our parish more vibrant and fruitful! A pastoral plan’s purpose generally reflects and expresses (1) our identity as a community, (2) the gifts that we value and share in common, (3) and the growth that we would hope to see in the future. My goal for us is to chart out our path for the next three years and beyond. I am in the process of consulting with some great resource people of the Diocese to help me develop such a Pastoral Plan. I intend to involve and consult as many parishioners as possible in this great task.
Having consulted with the Parish Staff, Pastoral Council, and Finance Council, I have identified some key ministries, programs, and areas which need our immediate attention while a Pastoral Plan is being developed:
Change of Mass times: Effective September 24, 2017, there will be changes ONLY for two Masses. The 8:00am Spanish Mass will start at 7:45 am. And the 5:00pm Spanish Mass on Sunday will start at 4:45pm. This will provide more time for better traffic flow for parishioners attending these Masses and the subsequent Masses.
Change in Confirmation Program: Effective September 24, the Confirmation Program will be moving from Monday night to Sunday afternoon. Classes will be starting from 3:15pm-4:30pm, and conclude with the 4:45pm Mass.
Stewardship Program & Renewal: Our new Stewardship Committee will be introducing the Stewardship Program as a Way of Life for our parish. Presentations will be given to the English-speaking Community in late October and early November. Our Spanish Community has already begun the Stewardship Program known as Corresponsabilidad since January 2017 with Mr. Koren Ruiz (from Portland), and are hoping to further develop their gifts of Time, Talent, and Treasure.
I continue to ask for your prayers and support as we move forward as a Community of Faith in fulfilling the Mission of God, here at our beloved parish.
In Christ’s Promise,
Fr. Bill Cao, Pastor
We often hear the response to a difficult question…if the Lord wills. While the Lord’s will for
us includes a path toward eternity with Him, we sometimes falter in our willingness to align our
hearts with His. The responses of the two sons in the Gospel of Matthew teaches us the duality
that exists in each of us. It reveals that the struggle of practicing our faith is real. We may intend
the goodness that Lord desires for us, but we realize that good intentions are not enough for us to
gain entrance into God’s kingdom. Rather, it is in the actual participation of doing what is good
and pleasing that we honor Him. There is then a continual movement of converting both our
heart and will to discover His immense love and acceptance of us.
As a pastor, I have seen and witness the power of spiritual alignment in people’s lives. I often
share with those who have detoured themselves away from the path of the Lord…it is never too
late to return to the Father! Thank God for the sacrament of Reconciliation. This is echoed in the
voice of the prophet Ezekiel 18:28, “since he has turned away from all the sins which he
committed, he shall surely live, he shall not die.” I pray that this week may provide us the
opportunity to give encouragement to those who desire to return to the Father. Maybe, it is our
own self. Let us not delay, but be ever eager to reconcile our hearts and minds with that of the