These goals, assumptions, and ingredients of a vibrant community have been accepted by the Pastoral Council and Fr. Vince Rosonke. After conversations and comments with church members, this final draft was approved. It is the working document from which parish direction, goals, and programs will be set.
· Helping each other in our parish to live out our Christ-like values in everyday life.
· Primary effect of religion and religious practice has to be spirituality of lifestyle … it has to affect the way we live and the choices we make.
· Building a community of support to nurture those values and spirituality.
· Engender ownership of our common spiritual journey.
· Each person is called to make a unique and irreplaceable contribution to the mission of God’s love through the ministry of Jesus Christ.
Assumptions: (we don’t necessarily like these assumptions, but they must be considered in parish life)
· Organized mainstream religion, in and of itself, is carrying less weight with more and more people. Even though organized mainstream religion is often less vibrant, there is a resurgence of interest in spirituality and lifestyle issues.
· Catholic doctrine & tenants are less and less understood by many people and therefore seem less important to them.
· We have significantly less Catholic Church loyalty. There was a day when “once a Catholic, always a Catholic.” It is no longer true. That loyalty needs to be earned, not assumed.
· Issues significant to the organizational church have much less uniform adherence in the Catholic population, i.e.: birth control, abortion, who should minister or be ordained, other sexual issues, etc.
Some ingredients for a vibrant community:
· Articulate important, usable ways to enhance Christian lifestyle in daily life. Members feel there is a unique reason to belong.
· Form adults and children in a way that they can contribute to the ongoing life of the faith community and society … and can be leaders in making that happen.
· Enhance personal & communal spirituality that makes the life and faith connection.
· Work toward ownership of the common vision and our choice to belong … not just to an “organizational church,” but in a way that brings out and expects our contribution to the life of the parish …do not expect so little that the St. Boniface faith community has few expectations, communal values, or joint vision.
· Participation, involvement and presence are key to ownership. Participation in liturgy/Eucharist is an expectation of the gift of “presence.”
· The message of faith & Christian life is not fully experienced “top-down,” but shared person to person.
· An important element of increasing spirituality of lifestyle is by advancing ways that members of the parish can get together in smaller communities.