“TRANSFORMED by FAITH, SENT in SERVICE to ALL!” This is the theme of our 2020 Bishop’s Annual Appeal as presented by Bishop Donald Kettler. What these words mean is very simple: When we are touched by God in faith, there comes to us a deep urge to reach out to others and serve as well.
This reminds me of the gospel story of when Jesus came into Simon Peter’s house in Mark 1:29 f. and Luke 4:28 f. Simon Peter’s mother-in-law lay sick in bed with a fever. They interceded for her and when doing so, Jesus goes to her, prays over her, and she is made well. She then immediately begins to wait on them. When we are transformed by God, the Spirit moves us to serve in similar ways!
This weekend (Feb. 15-16th) is “Announcement Weekend” and next weekend (Feb. 22-23rd) is “Commitment Weekend” for our Bishop’s Annual Appeal. On these two weekends, we will highlight the importance of your financial support. Chances are the Bishop’s message on DVD or Cd will be played for people in many parishes as well as bulletin inserts, prayers for success, and envelopes/cards made available for everyone to make a generous commitment and/or donation for the various ministries sponsored by our Diocese of St. Cloud. These ministries include the support for our Vocations Office and Seminarians, support for our Youth and Faith Formation programs, support for Catholic Schools, the Office of Marriage and Family Life, the T.V. Mass, Leadership Development programs for parishes and the list goes on. As Bishop Kettler says: “The ministries of the Bishop’s Annual Appeal are at the heart of the Church’s mission. They provide hope, education, and spiritual growth to people throughout the diocese.”
Chances are, you should have received a packet in your mail asking for your financial support. This time of year our parishes remind everyone to consider a generous gift as well. If you have not done so, now is the time to give. It is never too late to do so. Any donation, large or small, will be much appreciated. So, on behalf of Bishop Kettler, I say “Thanks!” in advance for your kindness and willingness to “…be Sent in Service to All!”