Stewardship of Hospitality

BUILDING A STEWARDSHIP PARISH ON FOUR PILLARS

THE STEWARDSHIP of HOSPITALITY

“When l was a stranger, you welcomed me." (Mt. 25:35). Jesus Christ teaches that whenever we welcome one of the least of our sisters and brothers, we welcome Christ Himself. Parishioners of a stewardship parish seek to see the face of Christ in one another. With special vigilance, parishioners must seek out and welcome new members to the parish family. A stewardship parish is a welcoming parish regardless of the parish demographics: large or small - urban, suburban or rural. We are all prodigal children longing to be welcomed home. in a hospitable parish, parishioners and guests feel they belong and are appreciated. This is especially true if they were ever absent from the church. Hospitality leads to a sense of ownership among parishioners. This ownership and personal involvement fosters a sense of “belonging.” When parishioners experience a warm and sincere welcome, they in turn become open to give themselves to others. God is love. God gives His love to each one of us. As God loves us, He calls us to love one another. This Divine Love flows through the heart of the faithful steward to love others. When we are recipients of such love from others, we are attracted to follow this example. When others welcome us, we are open to welcoming others. This desire to welcome others is yet another gift of God. The most vibrant stewardship parishes are those in which parishioners know they are welcomed, which fosters a sense of ownership and personal involvement in lived stewardship to the parish family. Listed below are some of the building blocks parishioners might consider using as they seek to build a parish of hospitality and welcome:

Recruitment and Welcoming Team

Saint Luke's Recruitment 8. Welcoming Team exists to welcome and invite others to join Saint Luke the Evangelist Parish and to involve all current parish members to grow our lively faith community that builds on the St Luke's vision and mission statement. Over the past year we have participated in the parish picnic, hosted the new member welcome reception, created the member spotlight in the bulletin, and assisted with the parish directory. The group meets monthly on the 2nd Tuesday of the month at 7:00pm.

St. Luke’s Publicity Committee

The Publicity Committee is a subcommittee of the Recruitment-Welcome Team. The committee works to promote and create awareness of St. Luke’s parish and its activities through the local media, other local organizations and promotional events.

500 Card Club

The "500 Card Club" meets the 3rd Friday night of each month at 7:00pm (unless otherwise noted). You need not commit to every month so come if you are available. "500" is a card game with partners and bidding as to how many tricks you can take. We welcome all levels of playing skills, including beginners. Although the game is played with a partner, we have both single & married people playing. We draw for partners at the beginning of the evening and rotate partners throughout the night to meet new people.

Parish Events

The parish hosts social events throughout the year to give people a chance to enjoy each other’s company and to get to know each other better. Examples are the annual pasta dinner and the annual picnic.

Annual Bike/Walk/Run

This annual event is held in the fall each year. This is a fun event for all ages. Participants can bicycle, walk, or run a four-mile path between OLlH and the St. Luke’s building site. There is a registration fee which includes a t-shirt. The proceeds go to the church building fund. Information for this event will be provided several weeks before the event.

Coffee & Donuts

Coffee, tea, juice and donuts are served every Sunday after the 9:00am Mass in the Gym. This is a great way to connect with other St. Luke's parishioners. Contact the parish office if you would like to be scheduled for this ministry.

Supper Clubs

The Supper Club is a group that meets monthly at either a local restaurant or the host's home for good food, good times, and good conversation. The purpose is to meet and get to know others from St. Luke's parish. There are currently two groups that are active.

Young Adults Group

St. Luke's Young Adult Group is open to all parishioners in their 20’s or 30's. We mostly gather as a "Supper Club" at a local restaurant or at someone‘s home to socialize and celebrate community. We gather about once a month, usually on a Sunday evening, and enjoy time together over a meal.

St. Luke's Prime Timers

This social group is open to registered married couples or singles of St. Luke’s Parish who are 50 years of age or older. Socials are held monthly, with volunteer hosts responsible for deciding on the event and handling the details. Parish activities are considered as additions rather than substitutions for monthly events.

TEA CUPS (Transforming Encouraging Affirming Companions Uplifting People’s Spirit)

TEA CUPS is offered for ladies of all ages - especially those who are newcomers to the parish within the past year. TEA CUPS groups provide a welcoming setting to make new friends, nibble sweets and sample delicious teas while nourishing your spirit. Small group conversations are shared in your hostess‘ home each month. It is a great way to get acquainted with other ladies in the parish.

Reflection Questions

  1.  Is your parish a welcoming and hospitable place of worship? How are new parishioners welcomed into your parish family? Do long-standing members of the parish feel welcome and involved?
  2. Using the building blocks listed above, how can your parish extend hospitality and welcome to all who come to your parish? What other building blocks might make your parish more welcoming to parishioners?
  3. Does the role of hospitality and welcome fall into each of the goals and objectives of the mission of the parish? Does each parish organization recognize its responsibility to practice hospitality and welcome?