April 14, 2014
I want to start off and say thanks for the help you have been my first three years here at SEAS. I look forward to many more to come. I am ever aware that this is your parish and you need to know what is transpiring behind the scenes. Because this is your parish.
In St. Matthew’s 25th Chapter, Christ recounts the parable of the talents. Although rich in symbolism regarding stewardship, there is one point I would like to share. The parable states the Master stays away for a long time, not because he is lazy or careless. By withdrawing from the immediate area he allows the servants to grow. We suffer often from superiority complexes or inferiority complexes. But God on His part has an innate faith in who we are as a parish family, and what we are capable of accomplishing. For without your unique abilities applied to our parish today, we will not be as great as we could be.
As of 3/31/2014, the parish is behind budget by about $172,000. The February financials show we have spent $227,000 more than we have taken in the first 8 months of the 2013/2014 fiscal year. A majority of our deficit is due to technology and infrastructure; basically our servers and computers were on their last legs. Although our employees have been more than diligent in their stewardship of parish financial resources, I have made our computer service company aware that we will be drastically reducing their service with us.
At this point I simply ask each of you to be aware of our shortfall and the impact it creates in our decisions for the parish. As stewards we need to always be ever mindful of needs versus wants.
I am aware that many families are struggling financially with debt, with job loss and catastrophic illnesses. However, I ask all parishioners to be mindful of the parish needs and responsibilities. If we are to continue to offer excellent facilities and programs we need everyone to help.
Thank you for your prayers and consideration.
Fr. Sherman A. Orr