Browsing From the desk of Fr. Tharp

Fifth Sunday of Easter

Future Plat and Facilities Plan

Hopefully most of you remember the meeting in St. Ann Church on March 2, 2017 in which we heard a presentation from Brown and Bills Architects revealing a “Master Plat Plan” envisioning the removal of the existing rectory, convent, and garage, and replacing them with a multipurpose building.  The purpose of Parish Council hiring this firm to envision future plat usage and design was to present to the parish what we could theoretically do if we could raise over three million ($3,000,000.00) dollars while not diminishing Sunday Collection and tuition payments necessary for operational costs.   At the end of the meeting, I asked all present to talk about these proposals at their meetings and social gatherings to see if the people of St. Ann believe that the parish possesses both the will and the wherewithal to reasonable consider such a project.

The next step is to ask the parish as a whole whether it is reasonable at this time to conduct a feasibility study to test the wherewithal of the St. Ann donor base to shoulder such a large project.  The feasibility study itself will cost some money.  Parish Council will decide whether to have a professional firm do a full-fledged feasibility study or whether we try to test the waters using our own “home grown” devices.

The parish hospitality committee will host a gathering on between the 9:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. Masses on Sunday, May 21 in the cafeteria of the school.  The plans will be on display and persons from Parish Council and the Building Committee will be present to answer questions.

The next Sunday we will have a preprinted ballot vote at all Masses to seek to determine the will of the parish.  Some thoughts to consider are:  If the cost of the project were to be approximately three million dollars, every parishioner family would have to give over five thousand extra dollars over and above tuition and Sunday Collection in order to fund the project.  Is this reasonable given our demographics?  A few leadership gifts could serve to reduce this per capita number for everyone else.    Do you feel we have persons in the St. Ann fold who could afford such generous donations?  How many?

These speculations will factor into your decision to spend money to conduct a feasibility study at this time versus a decision to table the matter for the time being.  Only having measured the collective will of the parish, are we ready to commit to a feasibility study to determine what capabilities for fundraising the parish possesses.

Discalced Carmelites Building Project

I am very proud of the rich tradition at St. Ann of being the home parish of many vocations of priests, deacons, brothers, lay ministers, and sisters for the Church.  You may recall Mary Jacquemin who became a vowed nun in the Order of the Discalced Carmelite Nuns of the Carmel of Jesus Mary and Joseph.  Her cloistered convent is building a new monastery building.  As a part of this cloistered convent, Sister prays for us (her family parish) every day.  If you would like to show her your admiration and appreciation, please visit www.friendsofcarmeljmj.org.  or retrieve one of the envelopes available at the doors.

Please Remember

This is just a reminder that all active priests of the Archdiocese are required to attend the convocation in Columbus from June 19 to June 22.  There will be no availability for morning Masses or even Funeral Masses on Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday June 20-22.  I have made provision at each parish for a communion service each day.  Funerals will of necessity be delayed.


Reflection on Scripture

Today’s gospel selection is my favorite gospel for a Funeral Mass.  Jesus tells us that he has reservations for us in Heaven.  In fact, Jesus assures us that these are “guaranteed reservations.” Jesus has guaranteed them with his blood on the cross.

Sometimes we are confronted by persons who wish to diminish the Catholic Church and its traditions and ask us, “Are you sure you are going to Heaven?”  Not wishing to fall into the sin of presumption, Catholics sometimes respond, “I hope so!”  This may set the questioner off into a frenzied state to tell us that we are reluctant to say we are going to Heaven because we really can’t find Jesus in the Catholic Church!  Don’t be duped by the designed confrontational tactic.  I contend the most appropriate answer to give is, “Yes, I have come to know Jesus Christ through the Sacraments brought down through history to us by the Apostles, as well as the Bible which was compiled by the Early Church to preserve the written traditions which are the inspired Word of God.”    By virtue of the Eucharist, we are the “Mystical Body of Christ.”  Where the head is, the body is certain to be. 


Readings for Sixth Sunday of Easter

Acts 8:5-8, 14-17

1 Pt 3:15-18

Jn 14:15-21

Theme:   The promise of the Holy Spirit


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