Busy weekend for this Roman Catholic. Saturday was spent in a six-hour meeting with other parishioners and our parish staff at Saint James. I am part of a group trying to fashion a new mission statement for our parish. It was a well-facilitated day and we were able to carve out our first draft.
Yesterday, following the 9:30 Mass, the parish staff conducted a second "town hall meeting." It was an opportunity for parishioners to share their concerns and questions about our future and the new church that is to be built for Saint James Parish. Emotions were certainly running high. Change is not easy. I think that some parishioners were thinking that the process had moved much further than it has to this point. It was a little frustrating for our pastor, but the meeting ended on a note of hope and optimism.
By the way, here is the "concept plan" that the Archdiocese of Chicago presented to us a few weeks ago:
In the foreground you can see the "Catholic monument" that will face Michigan Avenue here in Chicago. The new church is set back on the property. Lake Michigan can be seen on the horizon. This is a very densely populated area; 45,000 people live in the zip code of the parish, which is about 4 square miles. We have lots of evangelizing to do!
I am quite excited about moving through the process over the next several years. And you, the faithful followers of Gotta Sing Gotta Pray, will certainly be along for the ride!
Gotta sing. Gotta pray.