How welcoming is your parish?

How welcoming is your parish? October 2, 2014

You have ideas, I know you do!

The one rule is: it has to be fairly cheap, and cannot cause major upheaval or headaches for the pastor. No “replace everything with marble” or “assign a 24-hour on-call spiritual adviser to each parishioner” or “install heated holy water fonts” or “ban banjos.”

Well, maybe that last one.

Read the rest at the Register. 

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  • Kristen inDallas

    My parish does a great job welcoming families as well. They even “reserve” the last few pews for families with small children who may show up late or need to leave early. The one huge thing I’d like to see are more (daily) confessional hours at broader times of day. The people who know and accept the church’s teaching on confessing sins before communion are less likely to attend mass if they know they won’t be able to partake. People who have really lapsed are less likely to confess at all if they feel like their need (the amount of time alone to get through it) would burden the priest who’s already got a full line. The sacraments are what set us apart from every other Christian faith, the more visible and accessible they are the better. Also always wished there was a more family oriented rcia for those converting to Catholicism as a group. Ie babies baptized, school children caught up on confession and communion, teends and parents confirmed, marriages validated as appropriate. Most people not in one of the traditional conversion age brackets will have a hard time figuring out the correct order to tackle these things.

  • Kristen

    I have been saying for years that it should be routine for parishes to have the Confession liturgy written out and available by the confessionals. I don’t know how many people I’ve heard say “I don’t know what to say!” — and it isn’t an examination of conscience issue, they’re saying “I know we memorized the liturgy before first confession in fourth grade (or second grade, or whenever you did it) but I no longer have it memorized.” THIS IS A DUMB REASON TO STAY AWAY FROM THE SACRAMENT but it’s a real barrier. And it’d be sooooo easy to fix. A stack of photocopies would do the trick. Whenever I bring this up, the response is “oh any priest will coach you through it” and I’m sure that’s true but to say “ummm I don’t remember the next line, what am I supposed to do next?” is itself a hurdle to get past. There are lots of things about the sacrament that are supposed to be hard. This isn’t one of them.

    • Kristen

      Ahem, that was a rant! Thanks for listening everyone.