Our Parish Finances 2016-17 Further Thoughts
Over these many years, in every parish just like ours, ordinary parishioners would contribute the money needed to keep the parish and its ministries “afloat”, out of “red ink”. The Sunday collections were always the surest, most reliable source of the needed finances to keep the parish functioning well. The spiritual side always depended on the prayers and commitment of the parishioners. This was something everyone could give without reference to their level of income for the family. But no matter how essential the spiritual aspect of the parish was, we could never continue without the needed finances. Unfortunately, prayers do not pay bills nor salaries to our teachers, etc. We need the money too!
As you saw from last week’s article, the parish collections are failing and we do not have any other source of income. We have our savings – which every family uses for important bills and out of the ordinary maintenance – but that is being depleted by the necessity of paying ordinary bills for the church and school, as well as the extraordinary ones that periodically arise , e.g., replacing half of the convent roof this summer = $29,000.00.
Where do we go from here? I know that most people, who live in the area and are Catholic, might want to maintain a Catholic parish here, with its programs and services. But what are they willing to do about that? Every parish must be able to be self-supporting financially and spiritually. That means sacrifice! There is no “money tree” in the back yard and there is no “wishing well”. As a church joke says,”There is a lot of money out there. But it is still in everyone’s pocket!” Look at what we have, what this parish has accomplished over the years and ask if we want to keep it? Where do we go from here?