My dear sisters and brothers in Christ,
A social model is often applied to the church community. The ancient church was viewed in relation to the power and organization of the Roman Empire. The 16th century Reformation saw individual election as a primary reality. Today in America, the church is looked at from the perspective of corporate America. The church produces a product, tries to avoid bankruptcy, and measures its growth in the size of its membership as a criteria for success. Some members, even of Sacred Heart parish, still see the church as a civic organization, as the moralizing instrument of society as an instrument with a "specific contribution" to society. But a greater number, which brings joy to my heart, understand the church as an Event - "happening", by which the "cause" of Jesus is made present by the Holy Spirit.
The majority of the parishioners of Sacred Heart see the parish as a "place" where the Risen Lord can be found and where His presence can be experienced. They gather regularly as members of Christ's Body to glorify God by participating in worship services and deepening their faith through prayer and faith formation. They listen to the Word of God and respond to God's call by engaging in the process of conversion, which results in acts of charity. Participating in the sacramental life of the parish, they strengthen their inner lives and transform the world around them. Many see the parish community as a place where the creative powers of people are being liberated. The accomplishments of the many parish organizations are the fruits to the creativity and engagement of many.
The ethnic and demographic diversity of the parishioners of Sacred Heart presents itself as a blessing to many. The parishioners understand that God, who seems to be absent, reveals Himself through the face of the other. They know that it is not necessary to understand the other person in everything. The fact that the other exists is enough for them to respect the other person and care for him/her. Some even go so far as to accept the possibility of being hurt by others. They deeply believe in the real presence of God in the other and restrain themselves from any reaction that may compromise their belief. They are the true heroes and saints living among us.
This new directory, filled with the names of so many parishioners of Sacred Heart, is for some an ordinary, insignificant book. For those who would like to see the model of family applied to Sacred Heart Parish, the book is a list of family members, relatives and friends. How wonderful it would be if those who have a chance to use and enjoy this publication would see in it the names of their dear brothers and sisters.
With God's Blessing,
Rev. Msgr. Frank Kurzaj, Pastor
Our Mission: to spread the good news of Jesus Christ to all God’s people by word and action.