Ministry Moments: May Updates From Our Partner Parishes

Monday, May 27, 2024

I'm so happy to see some growth in the attendance of young adults at Mass. I find that I see new faces each Sunday. Still working on getting to know more of the young adults in the parish so we can get them involved! It's also been so wonderful to witness First Holy Communion and Confirmation in these recent weeks. It's always such a pleasure to see people celebrate in these sacraments together.

We had some great ministry moments this month. We were hosting our New Member Welcome Night and had a couple young families with children attend. They immediately connected with each other over their shared interests mostly involving their children and the desire to get back to their faith lives by joining the parish. Through wonderful conversation at this welcome night we invited the ladies to attend an upcoming Ladies Night In that our Women’s Ministry was hosting and sure enough those ladies took advantage of our free babysitting offered at all our events and came together to this night out. It was amazing to watch these connections to both each other and the parish grow so quickly through strong ministry opportunities.

This Easter Vigil, we initiated a young adult into the Catholic Church. Last week, her best friend, who is a single mom, started the process of becoming Catholic as well.

We had an amazing time and turnout for our Young Adult Sports Night. Around 60 young adults showed up to play a variety of sports and come together for community. They all agreed that we need to have more of them.

Weddings. Weddings. Weddings. My life has been so full of young adult weddings these past weeks. I had the Nuptial Mass of one of my favorite couples (I think I can say that) derby weekend and was able to work in both the KY Derby, Star Wars (it was May 4th), and the “Mawwage” scene from The Princess Bride in my homily. A trifecta of fun which did lead into the fruits and joys of Christian marriage. The couple was focused on their wedding Liturgy and even though some drama caused reception plans to change the couple was so excited for a beautiful Liturgy. Incense, a quartet singing…and a full Misa Cantata. It was a beautiful wedding that pointed to God and asked him to bless the couple and strengthen them in their love. What a joy and powerful witness they were. I remarked in my homily how my marriage prep meetings follow a seven-step process with five meetings. This couple would always go 2-2.5 hours not because of problems, but because they were so invested in their preparation. It was so rewarding.

Continue to be impressed by the comfort level by which they express themselves to parish leadership.

The encounter that stands out for me this past month is the Gathering trip to St Meinrad. I invited a young lady who is bilingual, still learning English, but very open to immersing herself in the language. Her dad also attended the trip, because I am hoping to involve him in the ministry as an advisor. This young lady was not born here, nor did she spend her younger years living in the US with her dad, rather in Mexico with her mom. There must be tales of struggle, fear, and trepidation to her story, yet she truly exudes joy, peace, and a strong love of our Lord. I am still inspired, and always will be, by those that have struggles far deeper than mine but rise above it so beautifully; their light of faith sustains those around them and connects people as God wants us to be—joined to each other with Christ as the center.

It has been neat to see our Young Adults take more ownership of their ministry and begin to organize events on their own such as regular dinners, book club, game nights, and Bible Study through the summer. The idea of equipping and training a few leaders in the group has been really successful in them taking the reins and running with it.

As it is nearing the end of the semester, I had to say goodbye to a couple of young adults who have been volunteering throughout the year. It was bittersweet but I was very encouraged to hear about their plans to take what they've experienced and start something in their new parishes. While I certainly do not look forward to goodbyes, the feeling of sending off our young people to do God's work is empowering and I cherish it...even though it can be difficult.