Catholics often think that because the Church is so well established there are “people” to do every job within the parish. Frankly, without the help and support of those of us in the pews, not even the lights of our parish would stay on. Each parish needs each of us to help and support the pastor and his associates to do the important work of our Lord and his Church. What can you do to help?
The best way you can serve your parish is with your active participation in Mass every weekend and Holy Day of Obligation. When you join your prayers to those of your fellow parishioners, and show, by your presence, how important you feel it is to participate in the eucharistic life of your parish, you strengthen the entire Body of Christ. While at Mass and in your personal prayer time, ask the Holy Spirit to guide you in other ways you can serve your parish.
2. Find the right job
We are all recipients of different gifts. Can you carry a tune? Maybe you belong in the choir. Can you staff a both at the church Picnic or usher on Sundays or Holy Days? Take an honest look at your God given attributes, and think about how you can use them best. Have a gift for public speaking? Sign up for Lector training. Enjoy the great outdoors? Become a part of the grounds committee, cutting grass and planting flowers. Ask your pastor or parish secretary for suggestions.
3. Read the bulletin
The bulletin is the rectory’s way of connecting with all parishioners. Take one every week (or whenever it is published) and read it from front to back. You’ll see upcoming events and calls to action for ministries that need help. Become fully informed about what is going on in your own parish.
4. Call the office
Call the rectory office and find out where else help is needed. There may be areas that haven’t made it into the bulletin.
5. Check the web
We will do our best to keep this site current and updated. Is there something you want to see here or a question you want answered? Write to firstname.lastname@example.org.
6. Bring a friend
That first step is so much easier when you bring someone with you. Ask a friend to attend a meeting with you. Sign your husband up to work the chili supper alongside you.
7. Teach a class
Director of Religious Education, Julia Carty, is responsible for educating more than 700 students in the Sacred Heart of Jesus religious education program. That takes a whole lot of volunteer teachers and aides. There’s no pay but there is lots of continuing education available, terrific classroom materials, all the support you could want, and the students are adorable. Contact email@example.com if you are a practicing, Confirmed Catholic who can help.
8. Search the parish ministries
Check out our extensive list of parish ministries and groups and see what appeals to you. It may be referred to as “opportunities for time and talent,” or “stewardship opportunities.” Or, you can call it “opportunities to make new friends.” Your choice.
9. Stay after Mass for coffee and donuts
After the 9:15 am and 11:15 am Masses on Sunday, parish groups take turns offering coffee and donuts to parishioners. It’s a wonderful time for fellowship and many a warm friendship has begun over a glazed donut or apple crueler. You may be able to brighten a lonely person’s day and never know it just by taking the time to smile and say “hello.”
10. Just do it!
The first step is always the hardest – find something that catches your eye, and give it a try!