Bulletin (August 3, 2003)

As I get ready to head to Peru, I wanted to jot down a couple thoughts. A number of people mentioned to me they appreciated the financial report; they were glad to know how we stand as a parish. Even though the picture is not a hundred percent favorable they sense that all groups in the parish are working hard to meet the challenge. Many people were impressed by the fact that even though income in Spanish Masses was less this year than last, still the $155 thousand given was a substantial part of the overall budget. I believe we will see an increase this year in our Hispanic community and overall parish.

I heard indirectly that some do not like it “when we talk about money in church.” Over the years I have learned not to pay too much attention to that criticism. We are doing a good and necessary work, one which requires financial support. Also I have noticed that those who make the criticism usually themselves give little – or nothing. That seems to be part of our human nature. You see it in civil society as well. Sometimes the folks who expect the government to solve their problems, themselves look for ways to avoid paying taxes. In his book Intellectuals Philip Johnson tells about prominent thinkers who developed elaborate schemes for government spending, but themselves were tax evaders! Such is our fallen human nature. When we give little, we often expect much. But the opposite is also true – those who give much are often the ones who have the most grateful, joyful hearts.

Some asked about the discrepancy in school income and expense – a shortfall of 48 thousand, even after the 140 thousand dollar parish subsidy. As I noted we are working hard to balance our school budget. In December and again in May we made several difficult reductions in personnel - which will be reflected in a lowering of this year’s expenses. Also our Parents Club has committed itself to raising $80 thousand. They of course need the support of everyone, especially for the School Auction.

The question arose what will happen if we do not meet our budget goal of $10,577 each Sunday. That would be an unpleasant prospect. I am unsure what more to cut, but would have to consult with our Parish Council. I believe all of us want to reduce our indebtedness. For one thing, we have to pay interest on the money we owe. But also it is necessary if we are going to move ahead with the many urgent needs of the parish – deferred maintenance in various buildings and need for a future multi-purpose facility.

Again I do appreciate your support. I ask for your prayers while I am down in Peru. I will be back on August 14. Meanwhile, give Fr. Ramon, Fr. Juan Diego, Deacons Ted and Joe – and all those who serve so well – your support and care.

Finally, there have been many rumors about Samwise since he got into trouble. I want to assure you he is not the dog in the picture below:

Al irme al Perú, quisiera compartir unos pensamientos. Varias personas me mencionaron que estaban agradecidos por el reporte económico. A pesar de ser cien por cien favorable, reconocen que todos grupos están trabajando para resolver nuestros problemas. Muchos fueron impresionados que la comunidad hispana ha dado $155 mil en sus misas, a pesar de ser menos que el año pasado, es una parte sustancial del presupuesto. Estoy convencido que tendremos un aumento este año, especialmente con la campaña de registraciones.

Agradezco su apoyo. Pido sus oraciones mientras esté en el Perú. Regresare el 14 de agosto. Mientras tanto, favor dar su apoyo y cariño a los Padres Juan Diego y Ramón – y a todos que sirven en nuestra parroquia. Que Dios los bendiga.