Thank you to the approximately 115 parishioners who attended one of our sessions after each Mass the weekend of October 26/27. A brief summary of each report follows:
Paul Portland SDS (Pastor):
Wauwatosa Catholic is having a good year under the leadership of Principal Lori Suarez. The school now has International Baccalaureate certification for Middle School Years, in addition to Primary. Main challenge is to increase enrollment (now at 203).
Religious education for children is going well. Work is underway to build an atrium at Pius for the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd, so that some sessions can be held on our campus in the future.
Leadership Team: after attending an Amazing Parish conference, I established a leadership team which meets every Tuesday morning. I have found it very helpful and supportive in the administration of the parish. The Pastoral Council, which meets once a month, sets the overall pastoral direction of the parish; this team helps me in day to day administrative decisions. The decisions are more solid because of various viewpoints and experiences. The team consists of two staff members (Kathy Wellenstein and Dean Weyer), a trustee (Ron Skelton), and a parishioner (Sr. Mary Lee Grady SDS). I thank them for sharing their time and talent in this way.
Parish Goal: Our parish goal this year is Energize and grow our membership by providing a welcoming environment with strong adult formation and activities for all ages to foster spiritual growth and a strong desire to make disciples of all people. It is a work in progress. In homilies and letters I have been emphasizing that a personal relationship with the Lord, one that comes from quiet time talking with Him as with a friend, is essential for growing as disciples. One challenge is to do more than just come to Mass. The ideal is that each parishioner would regularly join the community to give thanks to God in the Eucharist, and then show that gratitude by being involved in at least one parish activity or ministry. Our annual Ministry Fair will take place November 9/10, a perfect opportunity to commit to sharing time and talent.
Adult Formation: the Formation/Evangelization Commission is aware of need for adult formation and is reviewing resources that could be used. An initiative of the diocese will help us identify what parishioners would like to see offered: in the spring, as many parishioners as possible will fill out a survey from the Catholic Institute, which will help in this area. More information about this project will be coming in my bulletin letters.
Sarah Daszczuk (Faith Formation and Youth Ministry):
Middle School: Edge (6-7th grade) is off to a good start. This year we are walking through key Old Testament figures in the fall and the life of Christ in the spring. We are enjoying our new youth room in the basement of Christ King, which offers a great environment for discussion, games, and prayer. Our 8th grade students are going through Alpha youth.
High School Alpha Youth: This fall all of our high school students are participating in the Alpha youth program. It is 9 sessions and one overnight retreat, which introduces the Gospel message and encourages open discussion about each topic, so that our students have the opportunity to respond to Christ’s invitation. We have seen increased discussion and participation since introducing this program.
Confirmation: Juniors are currently participating in Alpha youth, which concludes in December. Beginning in February, juniors will begin immediate preparation for Confirmation. They will meet six times in the spring and be confirmed on April 28.
Dean Weyer (Administrative Services):
Last fiscal year our net operating surplus exceeded the plan/budget by $3,500. While we continue in a “hand to mouth” mode (only $6,100 in the bank on June 30th), we were able to pay all our bills on time and continue to fulfill our debt payment obligations.
The financial report shared in the September Invitation reflects that most income/expense categories were close to the budget/plan. There were four significant variances: $16,580 shortfall in parishioner stewardship, $9,795 excess utility expenses, and $16,575 in excess facility/ equipment repairs were covered/offset by $37,000 in donations received from three non-parishioners.
In addition to the information in the financial statement, please note three additional stewardship elements: $4,500 was collected for tuition assistance at our school Wauwatosa Catholic; $6,115 for our Sister Parish; and $26,500 for the Living Waters Campaign.
As we look forward to our 2019-2020 budget year, increased rental income is projected to cover increasing costs and yield a modest operating surplus. We continue to work on catching up on some deferred maintenance to our furnaces, boilers, air conditioner, air handlers, and roofs.
These facility/operational improvements were achieved over the past year: numerous rooms cleaned, painted and reorganized for various uses; signage added in multiple interior locations; new technology and phone systems bought to improve capabilities and save money; and a new security system installed to secure access to the building, with cameras strategically placed throughout the facility. A collaborative project with Kingdom Prep to paint the gym in KP colors and install new energy efficient lighting will happen soon.
We continue to work with Cardinal Capital on the goal of selling the east side of our parking lot. While we’ve had a pause or two along the way, Cardinal is rededicated to finding a successful solution that will be acceptable to our neighbors and the city.
Kevin Festerling (Principal of Kingdom Prep Lutheran High School):
Kingdom Prep is excited to share a few highlights about the high school development taking place within the former St. Pius X Elementary School. In the recent 16 months, Kingdom Prep Lutheran High School has realized a deep sense of appreciation and gratitude for the support they have received from the immediate and surrounding community, connected to the St. Pius X Parish Family. Since the launch of KPLHS and its facility partnership with St. Pius X, the Lord has granted a rich measure of blessings, which might not have been otherwise realized. KPLHS believes that God has graciously smiled upon the two organization’s efforts to work collaboratively, within His kingdom, for the benefit of a student population that has historically been unable to access high quality Christian education.
Since July 1 of 2018, on the campus of St. Pius X, the Kingdom Prep organization has been able to…