Called to help our neighbor
Every year, every parish in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, stretching from Santa Maria to Long Beach, and from Santa Monica to Pomona, participates in our annual Together in Mission Appeal. It is a unique appeal in the Church of the United States, in that 100% of the funds collected in Together in Mission go directly to serve the neediest and least-resourced parishes and schools in our local Church. Everywhere else in the country, with the exception of here in Los Angeles, similar appeals are divided between Diocesan and Parish needs.
This year, our participation in Together in Mission is lagging in a way I have not seen since my arrival at Our Lady of Lourdes in 2011. For the first time, our pledges ($115,146) did not meet our parish goal ($120, 915). I anticipated that our pledges were just slow to come in, at first. It’s not uncommon for me to forget to respond to the mail that I receive all the time inviting me to make contributions to one cause or another. Sometimes weeks, even months, can go by before I pick up an envelope again and respond.
Now that we are six months into the 2018 campaign, I invite those who have not yet participated, and who are in a position to participate, to consider making a pledge and a payment to help us reach our parish goal. As a parish community we are almost $27,000 shy of reaching our goal. I am confident that we can each do our part, and that together we will measure up to the goodness and generosity which has been characteristic of our parish community in the past.
To those who have fulfilled their pledges already, accept my deep gratitude on behalf of those many people whose lives we anonymously touch through this appeal. To those who are continuing to fulfill their pledges, thank you, and please see through your pledge to this important work. To those who have not yet participated with a financial contribution and who are in a position to contribute, please consider making a pledge and a payment now, either using the special Together in Mission envelopes available in the pews, or by going online to ourmissionla.org.
To those who cannot participate financially at this time, please continue to keep the work and mission of Together in Mission uppermost in your prayers. It is good for us to remember this important aspect of our participation. No more than the bread and quail in the first reading was enough in itself to sustain the Israelites, it is not our dollars alone that sustains the neediest of our parishes. They rely greatly on our prayerful support, also.
In the coming weeks you will see our new Seminary Intern begin to take up his responsibilities in the parish. Mr. Francis Kim is a seminarian of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles who calls St. Raphael Korean Center in Norwalk his parish home. Francis will be undertaking his internship this month, and will be introduced at all our masses next weekend. Please take a moment to greet him, and to welcome him among us.