Dear Parishioners: As your heard from parishioners today, Bishop Tobin has required that every parish in the Diocese of Providence conduct what is called an “Increased Offertory Campaign.” This has proven to be very successful at parishes across the state as parishioners have taken the time to seriously pray and reflect about their level of giving. It is a low-key mail campaign that asks each parishioner to consider a modest increase in their weekly support of the parish. The program is a time for all of us to reflect on how we support the parish financially.
Has our level of support increased over the years? We all know that inflation has increased and the costs of running a large parish with a sizable physical plant have also increased. Simply put, if each parishioner gives a little more, the results will be superb. This coming week, you will receive my letter asking for an increase. Most importantly, whatever you decided to do after prayer and reflection, please return the enclosed envelope. This will stop all future mailings for you!
We also ask parishioners to consider giving through the Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) online giving program. The use of this online giving option enables you to give to the parish securely and regularly. So when you are away from the parish or cannot get to Mass, you can still support the parish. We have many parishioners currently using the EFT and we encourage more to consider it. The use of the EFT means you won’t have to write out 52 checks or prepare 52 envelopes!
I wish to thank the many parishioners who were so generous with this month’s Outreach Collection. We are donating November’s Outreach Collection to Catholic Relief Services for their End Hunger Now Program. Also thanks to your generosity to the Outreach Collection we are able to give donations of $1,000 to McCauley House, St. Patrick’s Soup Kitchen, and Assumption Parish Food Pantry for Thanksgiving Day. We are also able to distribute Thanksgiving Food Baskets and gift cards here in the East Greenwich area. Thank you for your tremendous support of OLM Outreach!
This week we begin OLM Altar Server Boot Camp! About 11 of our parish children have signed up to be trained to serve at God’s Holy Altar. Each afternoon this week Fr. Connors and I along with Nancy Wray, our faithful Parish Sacristan, are training the new recruits. Once they have been trained they will be scheduled for regular service. We currently have 60 Altar Servers at OLM and this new class will only add to the great job they do. We are grateful for our Altar Servers, many of whom remain faithful to serving all the way through High School. We thank them all for taking the time from their busy lives to serve God and Our Lady of Mercy Parish.
We continue in this All Souls Month of November to pray for our beloved dead and all the souls in Purgatory. The All Souls envelopes inscribed with the names of your beloved dead remain on the altar and we continue to pray for them at Mass. It is a work of mercy to prayer for the dead and so we remember all those who have died especially the poor souls who have no one to remember them or pray for them. Pope Francis reminded us in his homily at All Souls Day Mass in Rome: “The memory of the dead, care of graves, and prayers for the dead bear witness of a confident hope, rooted in the certainty that death does not have the last word over human destiny.”
I thank you for your generous support for the parish and hope you prayerfully consider supporting the Increased Giving Campaign. We are among the last parishes in the diocese to conduct the campaign but I am confident that it will be as successful as it has been across the state. I thank the members of our parish who spoke on behalf of the Increased Giving Campaign this weekend. As we begin this campaign I ask for your support and understanding but most importantly your prayers. St. Matthew reminds us in his Gospel: “For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” God Bless. Go Pats!!