Thank you for attending the November meetings for Liturgical Ministers in the Catholic Community of Billerica!
Based on your feedback from these meetings, Deacon Phil has put together a Question and Answer for the main points that were raised repeatedly during the sessions. Please contact Deacon Phil at firstname.lastname@example.org or 978.663.8816 x246 with any questions about these questions.
Here are some Frequently asked Questions about the 2019-2020 Liturgical Ministry changes. As a newcomer to the Parishes of our Collaborative, Father Paul has experienced the complexity of the different ways that our three Parishes celebrate Eucharist. This complexity makes it difficult for new priests to celebrate Eucharist among the Parishes, leads to confusion around the altar, and makes it difficult for Liturgical Ministers to serve at different parishes. As well, Father Paul would like to align our celebrations of the Eucharist more closely to the spirit of the General Instruction of the Roman Missal. During our recent Liturgical Minister meetings, Father Paul responded to the question of “What is Father Paul going to do?” with the following: I am going to preach the Gospel, Anoint the sick, Baptize, Witness Marriages, Bury the dead, all according to the Church’s guidelines. The conversation also presents the Staff of the Collaborative with the opportunity to remind all volunteer ministers that we are the first faces that 90% of pew Catholics see in their experience of Church. Father Paul also hastens to add that it is a privilege and not a right, or an honor, or a recognition of our holiness, to serve at the Table of the Lord. We are all called to serve via our Baptism. At each session of the Liturgical Ministry meeting, participants asked that the Staff gather individual Ministries as well as all Ministers together for training and for social events more frequently. The Ministers expressed the need to feel better connected to one other, and to know more of what was was going on in our Collaborative. As part of the update of the Liturgical Ministries, starting with Lectors and Extraordinary Ministers of the Eucharist, but eventually including Greeters, Ushers, Music Ministers and Altar Servers, we will be hold update sessions. Needless to say, this is a large task, so our first updates will be for Lectors and EMs. Early in January, Deacon Phil will meet with Ministry Leaders from our three Parishes to discuss how to roll out these updates while also improving communication with the Ministers. There are also things that we can do quickly to improve communication. We will: This is hard work, but it can be done. Would that there was one silver bullet or magic potion to encourage our youth, and families with youth to attend Mass more regularly! Unfortunately, we cannot berate or cajole or demand or intimidate or shame families into attending Mass more frequently. We cannot offer prizes for attending, and we cannot demand that families punch cards to Mass in order to receive the Sacraments. It is not what Jesus did during his time walking the Earth, and I cannot believe that he would want it now. We need to look at the cold hard facts that attending Mass is not important to more families because Jesus is not more important to more families. And, that is a much more difficult question to answer. There are some things that we can do, however: Recruiting volunteers for Liturgical Ministers is really every Parishioner’s concern. If you see a Parishioner who you would think would make a good Minister, either ask them yourself, or refer them to the Liturgical Minister for your Parish. It’s really as simple as that. We would be happy to speak with any interested Parishioner to see how you might best serve your home parish. Our volunteer leaders by parish are:
Liturgical Ministry Update 2020
Here are some Frequently asked Questions about the 2019-2020 Liturgical Ministry changes.
There are also things that we can do quickly to improve communication. We will:
This is hard work, but it can be done.
There are some things that we can do, however:
In anticipation of Lent, we have created full descriptions of the roles of Lector and Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist for our Collaborative. We plan to roll out these changes on the weekend of February 29, 2020, the First Sunday in Lent. You can find the Lector role description HERE, and the EM role description HERE.