Sacred Heart Carving

Pastor Finance Letter

October 12, 2011

Dear Parishioner:

Sacred Heart Parish is blessed with many parishioners who continually witness a great commitment to their Catholic faith. I am grateful for the numerous parishioners who are involved in our various ministries. Enclosed is a list of our ministries, outreach programs, and spiritual formation. You are always welcome to participate in these ministries. During my pulpit remarks last weekend, I expressed my gratitude for your gift of precious time and financial support to our parish. Our ability to strengthen and expand our ministries, sustain our religious education program as well as maintain our parish buildings and grounds is a great challenge. Even in the midst of this difficult economy, you have financially provided for our parish and those less fortunate. I commend you for your faithfulness.

With the encouragement of our Finance Council, we will begin our 2011 Grand Annual Collection on the weekend on October 15th /16th. For many years our weekly offertory collection has not been large enough to meet rising utilities, escalating insurance premiums, provide for the substantial preventative maintenance and necessary repairs to our buildings. This past winter was particularly harsh which caused much higher than normal snow removal expenditures. Higher and higher energy costs are not going away and will always strain our budget. Without the Grand Annual Collection, we will end the fiscal year with a deficit.

Last fall we did very well with our Grand Annual Collection. I am so grateful for your open hearted generosity. Thus, we were able to reduce the shortfall between the income received in the offertory collection and actual parish operating expenses, plus complete some capital improvements. In the past year the convent was razed and a parking lot was constructed with a new fence and landscaping surrounding it. To the delight of many parish groups a room in the lower level of the rectory was enhanced as a new meeting area. The two drain basins in the school yard were replaced which resolved the large puddle we persistently had for weeks after rain or melting snow.

There are certainly challenges ahead – but we face them as a strong faith community. With the advice and support of our Finance Council, our Grand Annual Goal is $125,000.00. In this effort I would ask every household to donate a minimum of $200. I understand that some may find this difficult others may be in a position to give more in a grateful spirit of stewardship. For your review the Statement of Income and Expenses for Fiscal Year End 06/30/11 for Sacred Heart Parish is enclosed. Also, enclosed is a commitment card with suggested amounts along with an envelope that can be returned in the collection basket or by mail. You may fulfill your pledge or gift over a period of two months. I hope this will enable more families to participate in this very important appeal.

As an alternative to using the envelope system you may choose to use our Online Giving Program, which may be accessed at I welcome and appreciate all gifts and am always grateful for all you do for our parish. It is my privilege to serve as your pastor.

As pastor, it is my responsibility to pay the bills, keep the budget balanced and the parish buildings and grounds in good repair. I am confident with your help that we can keep our parish on a stable financial basis.

I assure you of my prayers, and my gratitude for your continued support of our vibrant faith community.

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Rev. John W. O'Brien, pastor


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