Incarnation’s Flocknote Newsletter
I took an informal, “raise your hands if” survey at one of the parish Masses last week. I asked, “Who receives Incarnation’s weekly Flocknote newsletter?” I was quite disappointed that less than half of those present raised their hands!! For those who are not receiving our weekly email newsletter…what are you waiting for? It is quite informative and well organized. There are links to important items such as parish happenings, faith formation opportunities, and St. Francis’ bulletins. However, I especially like it because it is…beautiful! It is creative and balanced. Thanks to Joan Macpherson, the editor of our newsletter. In fact, her job description has recently changed. She remains the Assistant to the Business Manager, however, due to her fifteen years of experience in several dimensions of parish life in Chicago, including such Flocknote publications, she is now Incarnation’s Communication’s Coordinator. Thanks for your hard work and creativity Joan…and for sharing one of your superpowers! Sign up for Incarnation’s email newsletter by going to our website and clicking on the green button marked “SIGN UP FOR OUR WEEKLY NEWSLETTER.”

Beacons of Light Survey
Speaking of our Flocknote email newsletter, thanks to parishioners who have responded to the “Beacons of Light Parishes Survey”. We have had seventy-one responses to date. Most of those responses are positive, short and sweet, sharing straightforward observations, feelings, or thoughts. A number of the responses relate to the cross laden issue of Mass times, and the reality that we will have to diminish the number of Sunday Masses. Some of the responses are longer and more complex, expressing concern for such items as the pandemic, archdiocesan and parish leadership, and the fear that some will distance themselves from the Church due to Beacons of Light. I encourage parishioners to complete the Beacons of Light survey, which can be accessed by clicking the button/panel under my weekly bulletin article. At this point, of the seventy-one surveys completed, only half of them suggested we have in person gatherings as a forum for gathering information or expressing opinions. Therefore, we will hold off on having larger meetings until there is reason. Until then, please continue to read my weekly bulletin contribution, where I will be responding to feedback from the survey. We also have pastoral council and education commission members available after one Mass a month. In addition, their names are on the front of the bulletin. Their role is to be the “voice of the people.” Please help them to accomplish their valuable role by bending their ears.

A Beacons of Light Challenge from Fr. Pat
As we get in the swing of Beacons of Light, I would like to offer Incarnation Parishioners a bit of a challenge. I challenge Incarnation Parishioners to go to St. Francis for a Mass or two over the next two months! If answered, this challenge accomplishes several great things to increase present and future holiness and grace in Christ.

  1. Going to St. Francis for some Masses would exercise and strengthen important muscles. Initially, paradoxically, it is a profound exercise of our welcome muscle! Yes, you heard me correctly. Going to St. Francis for some Masses is a powerful work of welcome to our sister parish. It is “reaching out with both hands” beyond measure! Besides the welcome muscle, going to St. Francis for some Masses exercises our “sacrifice” muscle, our essential Christian muscle to die to self. Whenever we exercise that muscle, we incarnate Jesus, and we further his Kingdom.
  2. Going to St. Francis for some Masses helps me dispel the “chicken little” mindset that says, “If ‘my Incarnation Mass’ goes away, the sky is falling!” Go to the Mass that is closest to your preferred Mass time. By the way, the Chicken Little mindset is worse than it sounds. It is a mindset that the devil wants us to have, a selfish, fearful approach to being the Body of Christ.
  3. When you go to some Masses at St. Francis, make a list of things you like best. Come up with a list of at least three, and as many as “a top ten list of reasons for going to St. Francis.”
  4. Drop in your/an envelope, even if you give electronically. If you put your Incarnation envelope in at St. Francis it will get back to us with check or cash still in it. It’s an unwritten church law in the archdiocese! If you give electronically, take a blank envelope, and put a paper inside that says “Hi, from a parishioner at your sister parish” and I bet these will get back to us too! In fact, this could become a fun competition amongst our parishes to see which parish is more outgoing, courageous, and welcoming by visiting our sister!

Please Pray for our Parishes Next weekend, parishes of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati will discover the names of the pastors of their parish families. This has to be one of the most significant events for the people of the archdiocese in twenty-five or fifty years! May we pray well for our “local church,” the Church in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, and all its members.

Sincerely and with Love in Christ, Fr. Pat

You can also access the Beacons of Light Survey by visiting our website: https://incarnation-parish.com/beacons-of-light-survey/