Magazine article U.S. Catholic

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Magazine article U.S. Catholic

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Article excerpt

Q: One thing I have learned--or would like to learn--from true parish sharing is:

That people are more important than buildings.

Betty L. Wolfe Colorado Springs, Colo.

Diversity is good.

Nina Frankle Montgomery, Ala.

We are all a lot more the same than different.

Bob Lecheler LaCrosse, Wis.

I would like to experience the universal church more.

Name withheld Kane, Penn.

That people will bond together quickly--and from that experience sharing becomes freely given, not coerced.

Deacon John Synder Alpine, Calif.

I have gained a greater empathy for people who have made poor choices or those who have mental illness, health problems, or simply have been unlucky or unloved.

Name withheld Scappoose, Ore.

A better understanding of how people of different cultures practice the Catholic faith.

Karen Dix St. Charles, Ill.

That it's not enough to share with only other Catholic parishes. We must go beyond our brand of religion if we are to be truly catholic.

Shirley Schmidt Blue Grass, Iowa

My parish is one of the wealthiest in the world, while our twinning parish is one of the poorest (in Haiti). From the twinning experience, however, I have learned that my parish, in comparison to our sister parish to the south, is spiritually and emotionally quite impoverished in many ways.

Linda E. Kelly Naperville, Ill.

Q: One of the most creative ways I've heard of to practice parish sharing is:

Block parties.

Florence Isaacs Medina, Texas

Let the laypeople take the lead. We know better how to set it up.

Theresa Moody Martinez, Calif.

A potluck after the gospel choir Mass.

Regina Smutz Baltimore, Md.

When one individual or family is connected with an individual or family from the other parish and shares life's experiences and prayer and supports the needs of each other.

Sister Joan Popivits, O.P. Warren, Mich.

Small community prayer groups.

Jean Drumm Lawrence, Kan.

We invited our sharing parish to join our students in our regular school day and another time for "Olympic Day."

Donna Albert Park Ridge, Ill.

First share with your family, then the parish family, then the wider community. First things first.

Norbert Miller Chicago, Ill.

We take a group of families to visit our sister parish for spring break and at Thanksgiving. Out of these visits we developed a scholarship fund for students, who then have come to visit us. Our pastors visit one another and share in important celebrations.

Valerie Vogel Boerne, Texas

Conducting a festival with booths, raffle tickets, concerts, etc. and splitting the profits equally, regardless of the number of tickets sold or success of individual booths.

Mary Christmas Corpus Christi, Texas

Q : In my opinion, the biggest obstacle to the kind of parish sharing that Bill Purcell proposes is:

Many people's reluctance to associate with minority groups.

Maureen Heisse Parkville, Md.

Economic differences, which are harder to deal with than cultural ones.

Terence Kiernan Brooklyn, N.Y.

People on both sides--tend to be judgmental and closed.

William McGahan North Platte, Neb.

He makes the assumption that there is a parish to share with. Here in Montana, the next parish may be 40 to 100 miles away.

Dick Clark Helena, Mont. …

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