Time to step up, preserve our mission

It was six months ago that everything seemed to change.

Few of us will forget the week of March 8-14, 2020. I spent that Sunday in St. Louis, cheering on my alma mater, Bradley University, to the Missouri Valley Conference basketball tournament championship. It would be one of the last live sporting events for months and, by the end of the week, COVID-19 precautions had transformed our workplaces, entertainment options, interactions with one another, our sense of security, and the public practice of our faith.

But it didn’t change everything.

The mission of the church hasn’t changed. Nor has the need for Catholics to come together and support that mission to know, love, and serve God.

This issue of The Catholic Post includes a few invitations for our generosity even in these difficult times. On page 5 we learn of the needs created by Hurricane Laura on the Gulf Coast and the historic wildfires on the west coast. A story on page 20 tells of a free concert to support the plans of the Apostolic Sisters of St. John in rural Princeville to build a new convent and chapel.

When we act as one church with one mission, God multiplies our gifts to make many impacts.

Most significantly for our local church, next weekend the Diocese of Peoria seeks a generous response to the 2020 Annual Diocesan Appeal. It comes as good Catholic people may lack access to a collection basket or have lost work. The lowered goal and tightened budgets on the diocesan and parish level reflect the economic reality.

But for the many who can be generous, it is time to step up in solidarity with all and help preserve the mission of the church. Our gifts will help our struggling parishes, because whatever is received beyond their ADA goal is returned. The appeal funds the ministries and apostolates of the diocese, among them marriage preparation, recruitment and training of seminarians, social outreach through Catholic Charities, college campus ministry, pro-life efforts, administrative support to Catholic schools and parishes, and much more. How poor would we be if those efforts were lost!

When we act as one church with one mission, God multiplies our gifts to make many impacts. The Annual Diocesan Appeal is a major opportunity to come together. Let’s meet the challenge of this most challenging year. It’s definitely time to step up. — Thomas J. Dermody



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