I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your generosity and faithful witness over my short tenure at St. Joan of Arc. It is truly a blessing to see all of the amazing things that can happen when the faithful come together in a spirit of love, with hearts, hungry for God. I am grateful for my experiences and encounters (too many to number) which have not only been edifying, but also fortifying. I look forward to the three years ahead and all the ways the Lord will continue to inspire me through the people He has sent me to serve. I echo the words from the Rite of Baptism as I encourage you to, "Keep the flame of faith alive in your hearts. When the Lord comes, may you go out to meet him with all the saints in the heavenly kingdom." Thank you and God bless you.
Rev. Michael Rothan
To celebrate the 10th anniversary of his ordination, a special Mass will be celebrated by Father Rothan on Thursday, June 5th at 6:30pm in the Church. A light reception will follow in the cafeteria to bid a fond farewell to Father after these last 3 years of his dedicated service to our parish and school.
This weekend Father Rothan addressed coming changes in clergy assignments that will impact our parish as well as the whole Diocese. You can view this message below or access the full listing on the Diocesan website at http://www.hbgdiocese.org/2014/06/02/priest-assignments/
Video Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qI_mtnDhJSk
Father Rothan recently released an open letter regarding the new fence here at St. Joan of Arc. You can read the letter here or by opening the document below.
Today is Pastor Appreciation Day! Please feel free to leave comments of
appreciation below and we will be sure to share them with Father Rothan.
The school PTO has been spoiling the teachers this week in honor of Teacher Appreciation Week. They took great photos of the teachers with their theme this year of Dr. Suess. We thought we'd share Fr. Rothan's and Fr. Wayne's pictures with you. Feel free to stop in the school lobby to check out all the others!
A message from St. Joan of Arc School:
Thank You Bishop Gainer for attending our 5th Annual Night of Knights Gala. Your presence made the evening an even bigger Success!!!!
All the Homilies from the Easter triduum & Easter Sunday are now available to view on our website.
Visit the Homily Blog to view these Homilies: http://www.stjoanhershey.org/homilies-blog.html
Video Message from Fr. Rothan
Video Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DSDNWOOdasI
A Neighborhood Christian Community is a networking of the faithful within a specific geographic boundary, formed to unite and inspire efforts to live the faith. We are called to be apostles (those who are sent) to all peoples and nations. We are called, also, to be in community with our fellow Catholic Christians. In an effort to try and assist this effort at evangelization and outreach, the “NCCs” were created. Since the time of its inception here at St. Joan of Arc, there have been triumphs and struggles to enact this ministry.
There are aspects of this model of ministry which are very helpful to the mission of the church. Namely, the ministry of hospitality to new parishioners; the outreach to those within our neighborhoods who are in need; the “Second Sunday Socials,” and the rosary groups, prayer groups, and social groups that have been born from the NCCs, which might not have arisen otherwise.
As far as the struggles, it seemed at times that we were trying harder to make all of the aspects of the model successful, as opposed to changing the model. We were spending much time and effort to try and get everyone “on board” with a whole package, as opposed to modifying the package in order to get more “on board.”
Therefore, after consultation with the Pastoral Council, we decided to take those aspects of the NCC model which are effective and build on those, and to let go of those aspects of the model which have proven difficult or ineffective. The model is a good one, and yet like all models, changes over time require adjustments in approach to continue to yield the desired results. It makes sense to re-assess our methods to meet our evolving parish needs.
I would like to thank all of those who personally invested so much time and effort to help bring our large parish together. Sarah Hancock, Mary Beth Lavery and Julie Groh have worked many hours to make our Parish better. Mary Beth Lavery put in thousands of hours to ensure that new parishioners would be welcomed and that others might receive the outreach help that they needed. The NCC Coordinators who served the neighborhoods gave of their time and treasure to build and strengthen connections with fellow parishioners and to offer support to many other ministries. These are the aspects of the NCC that we wish to perpetuate and expand upon. And for this, we need your help.
Those aspects of the NCC model that were successful, we want to continue. If your NCC group got together monthly, they should continue to do that. If your NCC group gathered for the Rosary or prayer, they should continue to do that. If they participated in some form of outreach, or helped make meals, they should continue to do that. Our efforts will now be focused on the “Second Sunday Socials” which were very well received; welcoming and keeping up with new parishioners; and outreach with those in our neighborhoods and beyond.
As we reorganize our efforts, please consider helping to promote and participate in these aspects of our Parish mission. Please contact me directly if you can commit to some aspect of these successful endeavors. Again, I thank those who have worked so hard over the last decade to bring our mission to everyone, and hope to build on their efforts in the years ahead.
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