November 21, 2019
You are Called to Help Steer the Future of Our Church!
Two years from now, Archbishop Hebda will issue a new pastoral letter. For the first time in any Catholic archdiocese ever, he is asking the people of his archdiocese what the letter should be about. This letter will reflect what he hears from his flock and will set the priorities of our archdiocese for the next 5-10 years.
The way to share your feedback is to attend a Synod Listening Session. These are gatherings in churches across the archdiocese where attendees will meet in small groups to discuss and give written feedback on what is working well in our parish and archdiocese, and what we believe the Church needs to hear in order to move into the future. Archbishop Hebda plans to attend every listening session.
St. Thomas More is prioritizing attendance at the following listening sessions, and will be coordinating rides from STM. If you are interested in attending a listening session, please contact the listed parishioner, who is an STM Synod Ambassador working to help our parish share our voices:
Archbishop Hebda has also said he wants to hear from both dedicated Catholics and those who may have walked away from church. Invite friends!
November 7, 2019
One year ago, our parish conducted the Building the City of God – Here and Now Capital Campaign to fund the remodel of our church undercroft, make the church fully accessible, and replace the exterior windows of the school building. To date, the capital campaign has received approximately $4 million in pledges or donations and we have collected over $1.8 million of that total. The amount collected so far is ahead of schedule and we have made great strides over the past year!
The capital campaign’s success has enabled us to begin our building process. An upgrade of the school’s electrical system has been completed and we hope to complete the school window project in early 2020. Our Capital Projects Committee is currently meeting with potential construction partners for the church projects. The total amount for all construction projects are estimated to be $4.5 million. We will continue to work on this campaign throughout the three-year pledge period to raise the full amount.Thank you to those who gave financially and through time! It took the work of many volunteers and staff to get where we are. As we celebrate the coming year, remember that gifts made in support of the capital campaign may be tax deductible. The Campaign Committee encourages parishioners to continue paying on their pledge. As you make your year-end giving, please know:To count for 2019, all gifts must be received by the parish office before the end of business day on December 31, or be postmarked on December 31 or an earlier date.Additional questions about year-end gifts? Email Nicole or call 651-227-7669Thank you for your financial support, help and prayers for this campaign! Together, we are making a major impact for current and future generations of parishioners and students.
October 24, 2019
During Fall 2018, STM parishioners were invited to share their prayers and reflections on the clergy sex abuse scandal. Two hundred twenty-five parishioners accepted the invitation. A large percentage of those respondents want to see more laity, particularly women, in leadership roles, as well as the possibility of married and women priests. Many called for a more inclusive Church and, in particular, said women’s voices must be heard.
July 17, 2019
As many of you will recall, we held a number of healing events as a parish in the wake of the last round of the Church sex abuse scandal last fall.
Part of that was to have parishioners write out confidential prayer cards in response to the crisis which were put into a wicker basket on our altar and burned in a ceremony before the Easter Vigil.
As noted below, before they were burned a few parishioners went through these anonymous prayer cards to pick out themes contained in them.
We thought parishioners would be interested in knowing the themes in their fellow parishioners' prayers, hopes, desires, and concerns expressed at this time. They are listed below and on our website. We shared a copy with Archbishop Hebda.
If you have anything you'd like to share in response, feel free to share them with Pastoral Council Chair Steve Thomas, Pastoral Associate Carol Arend, or me.
Fr. Warren Sazama, S.J.Pastor
March 31, 2019
In an attempt to incorporate more voices and perspectives, St. Thomas More Parish leadership is moving ahead with a trial to have qualified lay people – particularly women – offer reflections on the readings for weekend Masses after the opening prayer, before the readings on an occasional basis. The priest would then offer a brief homily at the prescribed time after the gospel. This would be in compliance with Church Regulations on lay preaching (Canon 766). This would be done four times per year during months when there are five Sundays. The parish leadership included in this process were the Pastoral Council, Executive Committee, Worship Commission, and Parish Staff.The first of these reflections will be given by parishioner Susan Stabile at Masses this weekend. Susan is trained in Ignatian spirituality and has significant experience in giving retreats and other programs of spiritual formation as well as offering individual spiritual direction. She was director of the spirituality center at the University of St. Thomas and was on the ministerial staff of St. Ignatius Retreat House in New York. She designed our small group Ignatian retreats for Advent and Lent this year and last. We are happy to have Susan give our first reflection next weekend!
Yours in Christ,
Fr. Warren Sazama, S.J.Pastor