Which Ministry is Right for You?
by Lynn Garro
One of the great things I love about St. Margaret Church is the number of ministry opportunities that are available to our parishioners. I have often said that St. Margaret has a ministry for everyone! I am involved in several, in varying degrees of participation, (another plus of our parish!) from being very, very involved to simply drop-in status, help where I can.
Currently, I serve at the request of Fr. Jamin on the Pastoral Council. This group of people advises our pastor on the activities and needs of each ministry in the church, all 50 of them! Do you know what many of them have in common? Each minister chairperson reported that greater numbers of people to help are needed! Are you aware that our parish has more than doubled in size since Fr. Jamin arrived in 2012? There are more than 900 registered families in the St. Margaret/St. Thomas community. With numbers like that, we should be practically turning people away! I’d venture to guess that many of us are not aware of the need because the people who run these ministries figure it out with whatever and/or whomever they have on hand.
Some of our ministries require a huge time commitment, such as PSR teachers, Youth Group Core Team, and leaders of certain ministries (Liturgy participants, St. Vincent de Paul, Fall Festival, St. Joseph Altar, Bible Studies, etc.) Others ask you to occasionally provide something, and others just ask you to show up to an event.
So how do you become involved in one or more of these ministries? The first thing you may want to do is peruse the St. Margaret/St. Thomas website and look under the ministries tab. Each ministry falls into one of four categories: Administration, Education, Evangelization and Worship, and finally Service. Read the descriptions of the ministries and see if you feel called to help. Are you ready to jump in with both feet, or do you just want to test the waters a bit? A ministry leader and contact information are listed for each group. Reach out and ask how you can become involved. I know for a fact these folks would LOVE to hear from you!
Here are a few of my observations of needs. This is a very limited view of the parish based on my involvement. There are many, many more ministry opportunities which you could join and help, again, in varying degrees.
After my husband’s funeral, this lovely group of people provided and served a delicious meal to about 50 friends and family members in the Parish Hall. This was such a blessing! As a widow with a seriously foggy head, this meal for my out-of-town guests was one thing I did not have to make plans for, and I am forever grateful. That’s why when the committee calls, if it is at all possible, I provide a dish for the meal. Can you provide a dish when someone calls, set up tables, serve food, or clean up afterwards? Then reach out to the chairperson and add your name to the list!
St. Vincent de Paul Society
Our St. Vincent de Paul Society chapter provides spiritual and material assistance to the needy in our community (anyone within the geographical boundaries of St. Margaret, not just Catholics). Do you have a heart for the poor? This might be your ministry! Do you have strong muscles and are willing to help move furniture on occasion? Then contact SVdP and sign up. Seriously, this need doesn’t pop up often, but it causes a problem when a group of women is standing around a 300-pound bedroom dresser, wondering who can be called to help lift it!
Vacation Bible School
This ministry organizes a one-week summer program for children ages 4-11 in grades Pre-K through five and is right around the corner! VBS will run from July 10-14. If you have a gift of teaching children, helping prepare snacks, cleaning up after children, or even wrangling children from one room to another, this might be your ministry! Organization is going on NOW, and your help could prove invaluable!
Eucharist to the Homebound
These ministers bring our Lord in the Eucharist to the homebound and unite these parishioners to the congregation at Mass, reassuring them that they are a vital and important part of our faith community. When my husband was ill and could no longer attend church, our homebound minister brought both of us not only the Lord, but love, hope, and a sense of still being connected. If you have ever considered this your calling, please do not hesitate to call. Your reward will be great!
The needs of certain committees are often listed in the bulletin. Based on the outpouring of gifts during our Lenten Alms Giving project, we all have a heart for giving! Can we transfer that to another ministry? Again, I am pretty sure that a lot of you are unaware of the needs. But I also hope you get the idea that our ministries are designed to meet certain objectives, but most of all, they are meant to help us extend our Love of Jesus to others and build our own community. How will you show your love for Jesus and inject strength into our community? As Fr. Jamin says, “St. Margaret is an example of charity incarnate. Consider joining us to play, to pray, and to work!”