Listening Session Materials and Survey

Thank you for to everyone who participated in our recent parish listening sessions.  All of the parish listening sessions for our planning area have now been completed.

This is to provide information about how to access all of the material shared at the listening session as well as the online survey that you can complete to give your feedback about what you learned.

Accessing the Material Shared at our Parish Listening Session:

Fr. Chris Martin Intro Video

Archbishop Rozanski Intro Video

The All Things New Overview Video

The Planning Area Overview Video

Model Option A Video

Model Option B Video

Model Option C Video

Model Option D Video

Accessing the Online Survey:

To access the online survey to provide your feedback about the draft model options that were presented for your planning area:

Post-Session Survey

Here are some helpful hints to assist you with completing the survey:

  • The online survey is open until December 31, 2022.
  • The online survey will take approximately 10 to 20 minutes to complete, depending on your responses to the open-ended questions.
  • The online survey is anonymous; however, you will have the option to provide your name and contact information in case further clarification is needed about your comments.
  • Once you start the online survey, you cannot stop or go back in to finish the survey.  You will need to finish the online survey at one time.
  • A list of all of the questions can be downloaded so you can prepare your answers prior to starting the survey online.
  • Only responses entered through the online survey will be accepted.  Due to the anticipated volume of responses, we are unable to accept any feedback not entered into the online survey.
  • If you do not have access to a computer, the internet, or the online survey, contact your parish for assistance with entering your survey responses.
  • Due to the anticipated volume of responses, we do not have the ability to respond to any questions that you submit through the online survey.  If you have any questions that require a response, send them to allthingsnew@archstl.org.

Compilation of the Online Survey Results:

Based on previous experience and the response to other archdiocesan surveys, we anticipate approximately 20,000 to 30,000 responses to the online survey.  All of the feedback will be individually reviewed as it is received by a team comprised of individuals from the All Things New team, the Archdiocesan Pastoral Council, and Catholic Leadership Institute.  This compilation will occur through early January 2023 and will be used to add to and modify existing model options.  These revised model options will be shared with priests, deacons, parish life coordinator, and key parish leaders in the winter of 2023 for further feedback.  

Questions:

For any questions pertaining to All Things New, contact allthingsnew@archstl.org

For any questions pertaining to accessing or completing the online survey, contact onlinesupport@catholicleaders.org.

Thank you for your feedback and participation in the All Things New initiative.

 

 

Update & School Survey

Thank you to all of you who participated in the St. Gerard Majella Listening Sessions for All Things New this past week.  I am grateful for your investment in the future of our parish, our community, and our Archdiocese, and for your commitment to Christ and the Gospel message. These discussions are never easy, but it’s important that we persevere in our faith in God, our hope in the mission, and in our love for each other. That’s the only way forward.

As I mentioned at the sessions, sometimes emotions can cloud our judgment in these matters – whether because we’re happy and not considering other factors, or because we can be angry and simply responding out of a fear of loss.  One of the most important things at this point in our journey is to take what we heard and what we’re thinking, and bring it to the Lord in prayer. Ask Christ to give you peace and clarity in discerning what is truly best, and to help you articulate what your thoughts and concerns are.

You will soon have the information that was presented, along with opportunities to leave feedback. Please take this opportunity to heart, and offer the feedback that is important to this process. For any questions, email allthingsnew@archstl.org.

Current school parents and teachers also have the opportunity to fill out the school survey. This survey can be taken online and will be available to be completed from October 17 through November 1.

Current School Parents/Guardians Survey Link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/NQYVH6M

Current School Faculty Survey Link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/NJSLNXP

Let’s continue to pray for each other, and ask the Holy Spirit to fill us with his peace, understanding, energy, and love!

All Things New Parish Workbook

You can find our parish workbook at the link below.  This contains many of the details that went into the models that were shared at the listening sessions.

Parish Workbook

 

 

All Things New Education Survey Results

The results of the All Things New Education Survey have been posted.  Take a few minutes to check them out here.

Addressing Some of the Rumors Around All Things New

Reprinted from an article in the Catholic St. Louis Magazine by Archbishop Mitchell Rozanski

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
Many of us are familiar with the role of the fact checker.  When claims are made by political candidates, the fact checker does the research to determine whether they are true.  And it often turns out that the claim is only partly true. In this article, I'd like to play the role of the fact checker for some things that are being said about the All Things New pastoral planning process.


Claim: “I heard that Pittsburgh went from 188 parishes down to 57, and we are working with the same group.”  

It's true that that's what happened in Pittsburgh. And it's true that Pittsburgh worked with the Catholic Leadership Institute, and so are we. But Pittsburgh's plan was Pittsburgh's plan, and our plan will be our own. The Catholic Leadership Institute is here to help us fashion our vision and plan, not the other way around.


Claim: “They already know the plan.”

This is, perhaps, the most important rumor that people hear.  I will not tire of reiterating: we do not already have a plan!  We know what the demographics look like; we know what the sacramental and financial trends look like. What we are discerning is what our infrastructure could look like, and what our mission should look like. Some preliminary models will be prepared over the summer as a starting point for conversation.  But then these preliminary models will be brought to the priests and the faithful through listening sessions so we can hear from peoples’ hearts. The conversations we have will clarify what we need to prioritize, and how we will invest our time and energy moving forward.


Claim: “All Things New is trying to destroy the tradition of the Church.”

We’re not trying, in any way, shape or form, to change what the Church believes. Quite the opposite: What the Church believes is the foundation upon which we build!  All Things New will not change the nature of the Mass, or of the priesthood, or of the sacraments, for example. What we are looking at is the way parishes are structured in this sense: where they are located, how priests are distributed among them, how parish programming supports evangelization. What we believe will not change. How we operate needs to.


Claim: “Demographics are inevitable.”

Let's call this “demographic fatalism.” If we just look at the numbers, they are declining. If we simply project those numbers into the future, it looks like the decline will continue to get worse. But consider just one counter-example. In the early 1800s, Catholicism in France was in demographic freefall.  By the late 1800s, there had been a tenfold increase in the number of priests and religious sisters! Of course, there were many factors in this turnaround. But the fundamental elements were the grace of the Holy Spirit and individuals cooperating with that grace. We need to view our own demographic
trends with human realism, and we are. But we also need to view them with faith in what the Holy Spirit can do, and what can happen when we cooperate with the Holy Spirit.


Conclusion

Many things are genuinely unknown at this point of the process.  What often happens, however, is that those unknowns get filtered through our fear, sadness and anger. That filtering process turns uncertainty into rumor - and rumors are not the Lord’s work! So here's my plea: let's resist the rumor mill! And here's my proposal: every time we experience fear, sadness and anger - which we all do! - let’s pivot on them in a different direction. Let’s make them occasions for turning to the Lord and asking for His guidance.