The Diocese of Rochester will again re-examine the “The Joy of Stewardship” during Stewardship Day 2008, which will be held from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. April 26 at the Burgundy Basin Conference Center, 1361 Marsh Road in Pittsford.
This is the second year the annual event has focused on “The Joy of Stewardship,” an ongoing theme chosen last year when the diocese rolled out its new parish-stewardship education program, which was very well-received, said Mark Clark, associate director of the diocesan Office of Stewardship and Communications. Consequently, 40 of the diocese’s more than 130 parishes are now actively pursuing stewardship programs, he added.
“We hope to build on that this year with more and more parishes coming online with stewardship programs,” Clark said. “It’s time to continue the journey of stewardship.”
Bishop Matthew H. Clark will open the conference with his own reflections on the theme before turning the podium over to Father Peter C. Clifford, pastor of St. John of Rochester Parish in Fairport and cochair of the diocese’s new Spirit Alive! spiritual renewal. Father Clifford will talk about the relationship between stewardship and the spiritual renewal.
Father Daniel J. Mahan, executive director of the Marian College Center for Catholic Stewardship in Indianapolis, will give this year’s keynote presentation on “Stewardship as Spirituality.” Father Mahan is a highly respected figure in the stewardship field, Clark said, and also is director of formation for the International Catholic Stewardship Council and author of More than Silver or Gold: Homilies of a Stewardship Priest.
Father Mahan also will lead a morning workshop about the rationale behind the use of the word “stewardship” and how the practice of stewardship is a remedy for the seductive influences of contemporary culture. That afternoon, he’ll also lead a workshop about ways to engage parishioners in sharing their time and talent, which precedes the sharing of treasure.
During another morning workshop Father Jim Lawlor will share his experience helping Mendon’s St. Catherine of Siena Parish start a stewardship program prior to retiring as pastor in 2007. Later that afternoon Deacon John McDermott of St. Rita Parish in Webster will share his techniques for talking about the financial element of stewardship.
Several stewardship-related vendors who sponsored the conference also will have tables set up during the event, Clark said.
Stewardship Day is open to any interested individuals, but pastors, pastoral administrators, and members of parish stewardship committees and pastoral and finance councils might find it most interesting and beneficial, Clark said. Such people come to this annual conference “for spiritual inspiration, practical advice and the sharing of ideas on the joy of stewardship,” he added.
“They get inspired by what other parishes are doing and share ideas,” Clark said.
Registration is required. The fee for registrations received by April 14 is $10, and after April 14 the fee is $12. Individuals may register online with credit cards by visiting www.stbernards.edu and clicking on the link for “Upcoming Events.” Individuals also may register by printing out and completing the registration form found under the “Stewardship” link on the diocesan Web site, www.dor.org.
EDITOR’S NOTE: For more information on Stewardship Day, contact the Office of Stewardship and Communications at 585-328-3228, ext. 1297.