Being Faithful Stewards # 4
Fr. Greg and the Parish Pastoral Team have discerned that Our Lady of the Mountains Parish needs to be more physically unified. We need to focus our efforts in creating a campus where all of the major activities would be grounded.
This would mean that all of our programs of Religious Education would be located in one place. These are: the Sunday Faith Formation Classes, Faith Formation Parent Connection, R.C.I.A., Adult Education, Bible Studies, and Sacramental Preparation would be housed in one building. Our future efforts and programs in reaching out to alienated Catholics and sharing the Gospel with the local community would have their home base in this same building.
This campus would also be the location of the Parish Offices and the Friary to house our Capuchin Friars. There is a Church on the campus to enable the students to attend Mass on Sunday as well as their Faith Formation Classes. The Eucharist is the source and the summit of our lives as Catholics. Our Vision is to constantly make the vital connection between the Eucharist and Faith.
We had engineering studies done of each of our five campuses, five Churches and eleven buildings. These thorough studies gave us a rough analysis of what it would cost to make each building up to code, safe and useable for the purposes of education and evangelization.
For example: to make the old school building at St. Patrick’s, Cumberland able to safely house our education and evangelization programs it was estimated to cost $ 2,000,000.00
and take almost two years to complete once we had the money. On the other hand St. Mary’s school building (the present site of our parish offices) would cost a great deal less since some of the offices could be transformed back into class rooms immediately. Most of the needed work would take less than a year to complete once we have the money.
After much prayer, reflection and discussion Fr. Greg and the Pastoral Team decided that St. Mary’s Campus would be the best location to centralize our Parish. This is a huge project. It will not be easy, but it is necessary for our present and our future.
In order to make this happen we will need a great deal of money. We have been given permission by Archbishop Lori to sell some of our parish buildings in order to keep our parish financially afloat and to fund this new project.
Fr. Greg, the Pastoral Team, John Treadwell, representatives of the Archdiocese’s
Financial office, buildings and property office and eight local business leaders met on September 21 to look at possibilities for selling these buildings. The business people came up with several creative ideas and other possibilities to follow up on in the coming weeks. Once some inquiries and progress have been made, the group will reconvene to discuss the alternatives.
We want to respond to Pope Francis and Archbishop Lori’s commission to be Missionary Disciples. With fewer buildings and more financial stability we will be in a much better position to share the Good News of Jesus Christ with our community.
“How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of those who bring glad tidings, announcing peace, bearing good news (and mercy).” Isaiah 52:7
Our Lady of the Mountains, pray for us.