Saturday, January 31, 2009

Joe's Sales Pitch for Sign Up Sunday

Today is Sign Up Sunday! Today we are asking if you want to participate in the second 6-week session of Arise Together in Christ. So whether you are new to Arise and are planning to participate as a Lenten sacrafice, or if you are continuing from Season 1, we ask that you fill in the form that is located in your pew and put it in the collection basket. If you are not sure right now, you may also take the form and then drop it off at the rectory, or you can also fill out the form on line, on the St Mary’s parish web site.

Season 2 of Arise is perfect for Lent. Catholic teaching asks us to do something to bring us closer to God, something that makes us better prepared for Easter. Arise is an excellent opportunity for you to get involved and come to know other parishioners while deepening your faith during Lent.

Arise starts the week of Ash Wednesday and runs for 6 weeks. It will be completed before Easter. The meetings are 60-90 minutes, depending on the size of your group. Groups meet in the rectory, the lower church, at the Olive Branch, in people’s homes, and even at Forge Hill Assisted Living Center. We have groups that meet in the morning, afternoon and in the evenings of every day of the week. I’m sure we can accommodate your schedule.

It’s fun and a very worthwhile program. If there are any parishioners that participated in Season One here at mass, can you please stand up. And of those standing, can you please raise your hand if you are planning to participate in Season 2? Thank you! So you can see that it must be a worthwhile and rewarding program for this many people to sign up again. If you are considering participating in Arise and have not yet made up your mind, I welcome you to take a minute after mass to read the posters around the church. These are comments that were taken from the evaluations forms from Season I. You’ll read that people have deepened their faith, feel closer to God, and have grown closer with other parishioners. But more importantly, you’ll read that all their fears and anxieties they had about joining never happened. So, if you know any of the people that were standing, stop them after mass or give them a call, and ask them, or any member of the Arise Parish Team, any questions you may have.

If you participated in Season I and you wish to stay in the same group, you may do so; or, perhaps, like me, you want to meet new people, or your schedule may require you to select a different day or time, simply tell us by providing the information on the form. If you’re still on the fence and haven’t decided to join, because of a very busy schedule and you feel you can only attend some of the sessions, we WELCOME YOU TO DO SO! We learned from our evaluation forms that even attending a few meetings was a very worthwhile experience. If you’re still on the fence, and only want to attend 1 meeting to see what its like or to see if you will enjoy it, we WELCOME YOU TO DO THAT AS WELL! Just write that down on the form and let us know. We will be able to accommodate you. Once we gather all the forms and assemble the groups, you will be contacted with all the logistics for your group.

There is a renewed spirit within our parish that is starting to take hold. We are starting to feel it. And… We want YOU to be a part of it!! We want EVERYONE to be a part of it!

Just sign up and join the conversation. Start connecting your faith with your life, and start moving your faith into action.

And finally, whether you choose to participate or not, please pray for all of the Arise participants, that they may have the strength to take that first step toward God by filling out that form, and pray that they feel Him pulling them the rest of the way...

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