A note from our pastor:
It’s CSA time again!? It may seem like we just did last year’s Catholic Services Appeal (CSA), but a year has flown by and a great deal has been accomplished. We celebrated the first Art for God’s Sake; we have had some new additions to our personnel including a new associate pastor, a new deacon and four other staff members; we learned to celebrate the liturgy in a new manner; and we raised a significant amount through Changing Lives Together, almost $840,000 –because of this we will pay $440,000 against our nearly million dollar debt. All are great accomplishments. These things and everything that we do in this very busy and active parish allow us to live up to the theme of this year’s CSA campaign: “Sharing Christ In and Through the Church.”
What is CSA? It is a campaign conducted each year in every parish of the Archdiocese of Detroit (AOD). It raises the funds necessary to provide ministries and services that no individual parish can provide: services such as chaplains for hospitals and for your children who are in college, it trains seminarians and priests, provides Mass for shut ins, our parish nurse program, formation for our staff, music ministries and ministers, annulments, youth ministry, the men’s and women’s conferences and a myriad of other things that benefit us directly and indirectly.
Our target this year is $254,631. We have to give this amount whether we raise it or not. This means that if the parishioners of St. Anastasia do not pledge, then the shortfall has to come out of our parish’s operating budget. Something would then have to be cut and as you know since we update you about our finances in the bulletin, we are already on a bare bones budget.
I want you to know that we are a parish of about 3,300 families. Unfortunately, last year only about a fifth of St. A’s parishioners contributed. These are very challenging times financially. Even the Archbishop is aware of this, since he has frozen the AOD target for CSA, meaning the streamlined budget will not be increased for three years. I know that many are truly unable to contribute, but we have to recognize that we are giving to God, not the Church. Things like our talents and the opportunity to use them provide a comfortable life for us and our families. I would like you to consider your response to God. In other words, “How do we, through our charitable giving, return a portion of His gifts to glorify Him?” These gifts are an expression of our faith through stewardship.
Many parishioners use tithing as a measure of their return to God. I want you to be aware that I do this as well. Ten percent of family income before taxes is given back to God: five percent to the parish as the primary faith community; the other five percent to various charities which help the poor. If you are tithing, then one percent of your family income taken from the “other” five percent should be the measure of your CSA gift. If your family income is $50,000 then $500 would be an appropriate CSA gift. FYI: the funds that we raise over our target WE GET TO KEEP UNTAXED to use for our ministries.
Your CSA pledge form is available at the top of this page. You may return the form by mail, drop it off at the parish office, or in the collection basket at Mass. If you are unable to give at this time, please make a note on the form and return it so we do not make further contact with you. The gifts of your time, talent, and treasure are Always Loved, Always Welcome!
Sincerely Yours in Christ,
Fr. J.J. Mech