Sunday, August 07, 2005

Letter of Concern + Religious Ed

Remember This?
Scheduled Meeting with Father Bert Diaz.
Today, Wednesday, June 29, 2005, is the day that our five representatives are scheduled to meet with Fr.Bert Diaz to discuss the Letter of Concerns that was signed by over 270 members of our parish and sent to Fr. Louis Brum. This meeting is scheduled for 4:00 PM. We ask all to pray for an amicable outcome. We will keep you posted on any progress.

The Latest News from the "Assigned Five".
Based on the answers that I keep getting from the five parish representatives that were assigned to present our "Letter of Concern" to Bishop Reymundo Pena (a la Father Bert Diaz), I guess the concerns of over 270 Parishioners at Holy Spirit Parish doesn't mean a damn thing to our Bishop. The Bishop has not even had the courtesy to respond in any way, shape or form to our concerns about the destructive actions that are being taken by our pastor, Father Louis Brum.

My recommendation: Call a News Conference and give it to the press!

Religious Education Program Being Scrapped by Father Louis?
I have also heard that Fr. Louis Brum is attempting to change our very successful Religious Education Program at Holy Spirit. The following was reported in our last Newsletter:

The Pastor has refused to allow materials to be ordered for the family-based religious education programs. At the Pastor's directive, preparations for the latest round of the parish RCIA program have been halted. What is going on? Clearly there is something afoot that will be euphemistically called "restructuring and improving", but will in fact be a dismantling of yet another set of parish ministries.

This attempted action by Fr. Brum really gets my goat! The Religious Education Program at Holy Spirit Parish has been the result of many years of evolution by extremely competent and caring program facilitators. Unlike any other that I have ever seen, our present family religious education program is a family-based program that involves both parents and children, united in the task of bringing the teachings of the Church to our youngsters. It is a truly WONDERFUL program that is MUCH BETTER than most other programs that are currently available. The sad thing is,... it would NOT be changed because there is a better program available. It would be changed as a show of power by our pastor!

Every parish family that plans to have their children enrolled in the religious education program should be very concerned about this. Your KIDS will be the ones that will loose if the program is changed! PLEASE,... voice your concern and DEMAND an explanation of why your pastor has not allowed materials for our Religious Education Program to be ordered? Ask WHY our old program would ever be changed and ask to review the differences between any new program,... then decide for yourself which is the better program for YOUR children!

You have a right to have a voice in what happens in your parish! PLEASE get involved and question your pastor's motives!

Please, Get that Rose Off the Altar!
I don't know about the rest of you, but I am growing more and more disturbed by our pastor placing a rose on the altar during mass. Several months ago, we wrote in our newsletter:

What's with the rose on the Eucharistic table?
That fascinating bedtime read, the GIRM (p. 77) says, Floral decorations should always be done with moderation and placed around the altar, rather than directly on its mensa [table].

Just the thought of our pastor going against Church teachings (GIRM) by having a rose on the altar while he is saying mass, but not allowing us to have our "feel like - smell like" real bread Eucharist, which is strongly recommended by the GIRM, is really eating at me... Am I the only one that is feeling this way?

Sorry, No Paychecks Today!
Paychecks were not available for Holy Spirit employees this past Friday. Getting paid will have to wait until Monday! This NEVER happened under the old administration.

Church employees are usually not on the high side of the income scale. Like most lower income wage earners, they often live from paycheck to paycheck, often even anticipating being able to deposit or cash their paycheck on Friday evening to cover necessities over the week-end. Not insuring that their paycheck is ready when they were promised can be a terrific burden on them. Wow,... what a way to run a Catholic Parish!

Parish Financial Information?
This was also in our notes several weeks ago...

Father Guss's comments were: "This is your Parish. You deserve to know exactly how much money was taken in and exactly where your money is being spent."

His disclosure made me wonder when we were going to get these same financial reports from Fr. Louis for Holy Spirit Parish? According to Fr Gus, "It is so simple now, all you do is write the last check for the fiscal year, then push a button on the computer and you get an instant, year-to-date Financial Report! " Holy Spirit's fiscal year ended on June 30, 2005, as well.

Since our Parish Counsel and Finance Committee have now gone "hush-hush", are we still going to get a financial disclosure for Holy Spirit Parish as we always have in the past?

Maybe it's time that we start asking for it?

OK, now I am asking...
Can I come in and review how the Parish is doing financially.
Why haven't parishioners been provided with this information?
Who is in charge of our Parish financial matters?
Do we still have a Parish Finance Committee?
Who is on this Finance Committee?
Where is our money being spent?
Do we still have a budget?
Are we meeting expenses?
Why all the secrecy?


Parking Lot Signs!
Thank you so much to our "outlawed" Peace and Justice Committee for signs out in the parking lot reminding us of Peace and Justice matters that should be in our Sunday Bulletin. The kingdom of heaven will be yours for your efforts!

Also, please don't forget to continue to bring rice and beans for the poor at every mass.

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