Society of Jesus Statement on Supreme Court Decision

Society of Jesus Statement on Supreme Court Decision

Society of Jesus Statement on Supreme Court Decision

Society of Jesus in the United States Welcomes Overruling of Roe v. Wade
June 24, 2022

The Society of Jesus in the United States welcomes the Supreme Court’s decision to overrule Roe v. Wade. Abortion is a massive injustice in our society, and today’s ruling is a critical step toward the legal protection of all unborn children. As we wrote in our 2018 pro-life statement Protecting the Least Among Us, “The most fundamental building block of a just social order is respect for human life. Until men and women individually and collectively make a profound commitment to the value and dignity of all human life, we will never find the true peace, justice and reconciliation God desires for us.”

We also affirm our belief that building what Saint John Paul II called a “culture of life” requires a stronger social safety net than our country has today. To be truly pro-life, we must support all women, expectant parents and their children by advocating for policies like universal health care, paid parental leave and a more equitable distribution of our country’s abundant resources.

We approach this topic as pastors, scholars, social activists and educators. No part of our ministry is removed from the essential work of promoting and protecting the dignity of every child of God. We pray that the Lord might continue to inspire our efforts and to help us always see the face of Christ revealed in each person, both before their birth and after it.

This statement is published by the Jesuits, on their website . We have reprinted it here in full.

 

Finance and Pastoral Councils’ Update to Parish

Finance and Pastoral Councils’ Update to Parish

Finance and Pastoral Councils’ Update to Parish

“At a recent joint meeting of our Parish Pastoral and Finance Councils we reviewed a report on the status of the parish. At the Masses during Pentecost weekend, we are sharing these updates with you in person, and then through other communication channels during the week.

Our parish weathered Covid because of YOU … the wonderful faith and commitment of our parishioners. You stayed connected and even sent in your support when you couldn’t be at Mass in person. You continued to be a vital part our parish community.
Many, many thanks!  In addition, we received about $100K through the PPP (Payroll Protection Program) government emergency assistance over two years. Without your efforts and that support we would have crashed.

That’s the good news…

The not-so-good? Our regular offertory income continues its long-term decreasing trend. Most weeks we don’t make the budget figure we need … you see it in the bulletin report each week. It is not a sustainable situation. We continue functioning only because of a bare-bones budget, deferred upkeep and maintenance, special gifts from you and others, God’s grace, and some degree of plain old luck. Yet, we can’t responsibly continue to operate this way. Regular expenses – like oil, snow removal, insurances, and more – will rise next year by significant amounts. Some building needs cannot be put off any longer.

Is there a “safety net”?

It’s important for you to know that our only “safety net” is our parish savings account. At the current rate, it can only cover us for about 2 more years .

The building endowment money can’t be used for regular operating expenses. The diocese does not “bail out” parishes who can’t pay their bills. If funds are borrowed, they must be repaid with interest. Every parish stands or falls on its own resources
That means it is up to us. All of us.

For our part, we are now preparing to take a number of steps to change this financial outlook:

First, we are already in the process of building our parish programs. A vibrant community attracts people and enables us to carry out our mission. It’s why the parish is here in the first place! We are seeing some positive results already, with new people coming to us sharing their gifts and talents.

Also, we will have our building study results in the next few weeks. That will help us as a parish and school determine what steps we need to take with our two sets of buildings. No decisions have been made at this time……we need the results of the study to do that. You will hear from us again as this process continues to unfold. We will keep this conversation going along each step of the way.

And for YOUR part? Keep being the dedicated, committed, giving parish family you’ve been. Get involved. Participate. Share your ideas. Offer support as generously as possible.

It’s up to all of US.
Change is inevitable. If we refuse to change, we will likely not have a strong or long future. So let’s get to work, together, making the changes necessary to continue the work of this vibrant parish.”

Weeds are for the Bees

Weeds are for the Bees

Weeds are for the Bees

There’s not much that is more appealing than the sight – and scent – of a freshly mown lawn. As terrific as that is, the notion of helping pollinators early in the Maine spring is even more appealing. So, we’ve joined others who are giving the bees and other early pollinators a head start by providing habitat and forage for them as part of No Mow May. This initiative started in the United Kingdom and has earned support on this side of the Atlantic, including Portland and other parts of the state.

Nothing ventured, nothing gained. It’s harder than you might imagine for us to see our grass look unkempt, but we remember that we are working to care for our common home in small ways every day – hoping they add up. Seeing bees enjoying those bright, yellow dandelions is uplifting! We’ll see where it goes, but so far, the team’s been committed to seeing it through until Wednesday, June 1st!

Responding to the Humanitarian Crisis In Ukraine

Responding to the Humanitarian Crisis In Ukraine

Responding to the Humanitarian Crisis In Ukraine

Parishioners have asked about established, reputable, and effective organizations who are delivering immediate relief in the places where the our brothers and sisters who are fleeing the war in Ukraine are being served. Indeed, there are many reputable organizations helping with the immediate and ongoing refugee crisis caused by the Russian government’s attack on Ukraine.

The three Catholic organizations listed here have longstanding partnerships with local nonprofit organizations (also known as non-governmental organizations or NGOs) in the countries where they operate. If you are moved to give online, here are links that may be helpful.

1. Catholic Relief Services https://www.crs.org/

2. Jesuit Refugee Services You can learn more here: https://www.jesuits.global/2022/03/18/ukraine-emergency-the-jesuits-commitment-goes-on/ And this link will take you to more specific information to donate online: https://www.jrsusa.org/crisis-in-ukraine/

3. Pope Francis’ Pontifical Mission Societies The Pope’s mission work with people who are living in poverty, marginalized, or otherwise excluded are included on this website with a specific fund for Ukraine found here: https://www.missio.org/project/20899/In-Solidarity-With-Ukraine-?localization=EN

If you’re unsure about the legitimacy of an organization or donation request, take your time with your decision. You can look information on their website, search for their recent annual reports describing their work and how their funds are used. Talk to friends or family members to see if anyone has experience with the organization as a donor or volunteer. Never give your credit card number or other banking information to anyone who calls soliciting a donation. It’s wonderful to be generous, and important to protect your personal information.

 

Changes to Mass Schedule in June

Changes to Mass Schedule in June

Changes to Mass Schedule in June

We’ve Heard You…

For several years now, our parish community has been participating in a lengthy process of planning and discernment, with a goal of directing our future parish life with the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Divine guidance is bountiful and infinite, of that we are assured! And, from the earliest days of examining our parish life, our resources – both human and capital – through the recent days of Synodal listening sessions, you’ve told us your goals. You’ve
shared your hopes and dreams for the broader Church, and for our parish community.

Among other goals, you’ve told us repeatedly that you want Our Lady of Hope to be a welcoming parish which is known for living out the Gospel message through our vibrant ministries and visible sense of community. You’ve missed seeing each other at Mass – we’ve all missed seeing each other. And, you’d like to find more ways to share your Faith in community.

After listening to you, the architectural planners, and in alignment with Church teaching on celebrating weekend Masses to a full Assembly, we are shifting our Sunday Mass schedules to enhance our parish liturgical experience starting on June 5th . This will also allow greater scheduling flexibility for our dedicated Lectors, Eucharistic Ministers, Greeters, and offer creative opportunities for our Music Ministry.

Weekend Mass Schedule Our Lady of Hope Parish, effective June 5, 2022
Saturday, 4:30 PM St. Pius X, 492 Ocean Avenue
Sunday, 7:30 AM St. Joseph, 673 Stevens Avenue
Sunday, 9:30 AM St. Pius X, 492 Ocean Avenue (Family Mass)
Sunday, 5:00 PM St. Joseph, 673 Stevens Avenue

Thank you for your continued support as we make our way forward in our Spirit-guided efforts to grow our Parish.

Pastoral Council Update to Parish

Pastoral Council Update to Parish

Pastoral Council Update to Parish

On the weekend of March 12 -13, 2022, members of the Pastoral Council spoke at each Mass, providing a brief update on parish life. Below you will find the seven points that were covered:
1. It is important that we all remember that the “church” is not an institution or a “they”. Church is “us”! The results of the recent Synodal listening sessions have been reported to you in the bulletin (and here on our website). These show a desire to be a people who are connected to one another and a parish that is welcoming to all of God’s people.

2. This has been a year of action: we created the role of a director of parish life as part of our parish team, resulting in more connections between our parish ministries and between the ministries and the reset of the parish; increased activity through social media (which is drawing new people to our parish).

3. We have a revised sacramental prep program for our children. This shift has been in the works for several years. Our 9 am Mass has become our “Family Mass” and actively involves the children. This is a part of our journeying with youth, one of the key Jesuit areas of ministry.

4. Our parishioners have been supporting charitable causes and agencies in the larger community. This is part of our mission to walk with and care for the marginalized and those who suffer. The most recent effort, coordinated by our Social Justice and Peace Commission, was a collection of supplies for Hope House. Thank you for your generosity!

5. This year we expected that our parish operational budget would be in a deficit, and it is. With costs increasing as they are, we will have a more detailed report next month.

6. Upcoming events for the spring and early summer include: Arts ABloom, a parish paint night, Plant Sale all in May, an outdoor Mass on July 30. Fr. Greg Boyle, SJ, best selling author nationally known for his work in California with Homeboy Industries (the largest gang rehabilitation and re-entry program in the world) will be here on May 24th. He will be speaking to students during the day and at an evening event at Cheverus open to the public.

7. Lastly, we are seeking candidates to serve on the Pastoral Council for the coming year. The Parish Office is accepting nominations now. To serce on the Council, you must be a registered member of the Parish, active in parish and/or school life and be at least 16 years old. You may nominate yourself!

In this Ignatian Year, as we celebrate the 500th Anniversary of the birth of the Ignatian Vision, we can report that Our Lady of Hope is a parish with a lived concern for others. Thank you for playing your part – and for considering what new might be calling you.

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