Embracing change - Catholic Courier
The sign displaying the new parish name sits outside of St. Helen Church on Hinchey Road in Gates. The sign displaying the new parish name sits outside of St. Helen Church on Hinchey Road in Gates.

Embracing change

Change has been the theme recently for my parish family. This month, we became the Parish of the Holy Family, uniting the churches of Holy Ghost, St. Helen and St. Jude in Gates into one parish.

In addition to our new identity, the parish also changed its Mass schedule. The news came with a lot of animosity from parishioners. Many were very upset that the schedule they had become accustomed to was changing, meaning that they would have to change their routine and possibly attend another worship site. While everyone was entitled to have their own opinions, I was extremely disappointed at some parishioners’ responses to the news.

Like many people, I don’t like change. Change can be scary and unpredictable. However, I knew our new parish needed to do something to make us a more vibrant community. As an active member of the parish, I knew we couldn’t just sit back, look at our present reality and do nothing about it. So I decided to welcome the changes and embrace them with open arms — praying that God would see us through them, just like he did when the three churches first became a cluster six years ago. It will be some time before we know if these changes are making a difference, but with continued prayers and support of parishioners, we can only hope that we will see some positive results.

As we pray in the Serenity Prayer: "O God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference."

Hopefully, we can all embrace the changes and challenges in our lives with the understanding that God is with us and will see us through.


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