Dear Parish Family,
I am writing to pass along to you a recent communication that I have received from Bishop Mark Bartosic who administers the archdiocesan vicariate in which our parish resides. I have included his letter to me below with his permission.
The letter is an unexpected announcement that the timetable for Saint Andrew parish to participate in will begin this Fall. Even though the other pastors and I were alerted that our activation could happen this year and based on the prevailing sentiment and the existing plan for the process to start next year, I admit that I did not expect this decision.
For those who are not aware, Renew My Church is a process of the Archdiocese to ensure that the resources and structure of the Archdiocese are aligned to best meet our needs and fulfill our mission. You can find out more about it at https://www.renewmychurch.org/.
At the heart of Renew My Church is a process of prayerful discernment. Every parish must participate in this process with a “grouping” – a set of parishes in a local area. As Bishop Bartosic has made us aware in his letter, the circumstances of our world have quickly changed and he feels our local area of parishes should enter that discernment sooner rather than later. Along with our grouping, several other groupings in the Archdiocese have been activated in this accelerated timetable and nothing has been communicated to me that would suggest this decision was based on some deficiency of our parish or school.
During this time, I know that many of our parishioners are concerned about many things. Fears of catching COVID-19, grief over friends and family who have died as a result of the disease, fears of losing jobs or having lost a job and figuring out how to pay bills, making decisions about attending school as cases of COVID rise, and so much more. We certainly face a lot of fears which require our thoughtful prayer. I know that the activation for Renew My Church is unexpected and that can seem like an added stress, but I would encourage us not to fear. Instead, I believe all of us should do what Bishop Bartosic has called us to do. We should pray and discern together. Important advice all the time but especially in times of crisis.
Currently, I do not have specific details about the process of Renew My Church as it relates to Saint Andrew Parish. I will share as much information with you as I can and as soon as I can. In the meantime, I invite you to pray and ask for God’s insight to come upon all of us as we journey together as a family of disciples. We will need God’s guidance to best know how we can continue to fulfill our mission.
If you have any questions or concerns, please bring them to my attention and I will do my best to keep you informed about the process.
Fr. Sergio Romo20 RMC Deanery C_072120