The recent weather pattern feels more like early October rather than early December. I am aware that the majority of our seasonal residents and visitors are ecstatic with the warmer than usual weather, however, I would like some cooler weather indicative of late fall. The winter solstice is less than two weeks away (December 22) marking the first day of winter. As the song says, “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas,” however, it is not at all beginning to feel a lot like Christmas with high temperatures in the 80s. If the forecast holds, it will have cooled a few degrees by this weekend but far short of where we should be for this time of year. As a year round resident, I feel that my dues are paid sweating it out during the summer months. The ultimate reward is cool weather during the late fall and winter. My apologies if I offended anyone with my wishes for cooler or seasonable weather for the holidays.
The ribbon cutting of the Paniccia Prayer Garden took place this past Sunday following the 9:00 a.m. Mass. Several hundred parishioners processed to the Prayer Garden to take part in the ribbon cutting. After saying a few words and sprinkling Holy Water on the garden, Fr. John gave the scissors to Sandi Paniccia who welcomed everyone into the Prayer Garden for the first time. Everyone raved about the transformation of a virtually “dead” space in our courtyard to a truly spiritual space which will be enjoyed by all who choose to visit.
Have you walked through the Memorial Garden recently? We have “beefed up” the landscaping yet again and added more flowering bushes and plants with a new darker colored mulch creating a beautiful contrast. Although biased, I must say that the memorial garden looks better than ever. Would you like to join hundreds of your fellow parishioners and make our memorial garden your final resting place? The all inclusive price to do so is only $1,200.00 and includes the opening, closing, urn, headstone and plaque. This price is literally a fraction of what you would pay at any other cemetery, and at St. John the Evangelist your remains will be buried in consecrated grounds. In order to purchase space in our garden, you must be a registered parishioner of St. John the Evangelist or a family member of a parishioner. If you are interested in taking advantage of this opportunity, please contact me at 566.1678 to schedule an appointment.
We now have less than one month remaining in our 2011 Catholic Faith Appeal and we are still approximately $80,000 shy of our goal. It is going to take a miracle for us to meet with success by the end of the year; however, stranger things have happened. If you are able to make a late year gift to the CFA, we would certainly appreciate the contribution. As you are aware, if we fail to meet our goal, the shortfall will have to be recognized out of operating income. We have come a long way in the past three years and have been operating “in the black” for the past two years. Missing our goal will be very detrimental for our current 2011-2012 fiscal year. You may contribute to the CFA with gifts of stock, via credit card through the Diocese of Venice website or simply by dropping a check in the offertory. Thank you in advance for your consideration.
Please mark your calendars for the Second Annual Ministry Fair to be held January 28 and 29 of this coming year. This will be an ideal opportunity for those of you wishing to become involved in a parish ministry to do so. All of our ministries will be represented in the fair which will be held in the ballroom of the Parish Life Center. There will be giveaways at the fair as well as snacks and beverages tailored to the time of day you choose to attend. Please see upcoming bulletins for further details on the Ministry Fair.
Beginning this weekend you will see special envelopes with a red poinsettia in the narthex. Your donation will furnish the Sanctuary with flowers during the Christmas season and your loved ones will be remembered in the Christmas Spiritual Bouquet during the Christmas Masses. Your intentions will also be published in the parish bulletin. A duplicate of the envelope will be published in the bulletin for those that are unable to locate an envelope.
After the first of the year, we are going to begin an additional bench campaign for those who were unable to take advantage of the initial campaign earlier this year. After seeing the finished product, many parishioners have approached me regarding the purchase of additional granite benches. Once the locations are finalized, we will publish a map in the bulletin indicating the placement of the additional benches. The price for a bench will remain at $3,000.00 which includes the engraving. Some of the benches will be located around the perimeter of the church and others will be located in the courtyard. Please see upcoming bulletins for further details.
In His work together,
Scott Schlossberg, MBA