How Decisions are Made
At St. Leo, the life of the parish is structured around the following eight commissions:
- Ecumenical and Interfaith
- Pastoral Care
- Social Justice
- Faith Formation
- Food Connection
If you have an initiative you want to propose in any area of the parish, bring your idea to the appropriate commission chairperson or staff member. The chair will put your idea on the commissionís agenda for the commission to consider in a timely fashion. Once the staff liaison learns of your initiative through the commission process, she or he will then relate your idea or initiative to the pastoral staff at its weekly meeting. Since the staff is aware of all of the initiatives coming forward in the parish, the staff liaison can help the commission view their proposed initiative in light of the larger picture, the whole life of the parish.
The process for moving an initiative from idea form to action is the following: the appropriate commission will research, review, and reflect on a course of action that is consistent with our Five Year Plan and Mission and Vision Statement. After collaboration with the Pastor, Pastoral Staff, other appropriate commissions, and the Pastoral Council, the commission then makes a decision by consensus on a course of action.
The St. Leo community seeks ways to deepen our Christian faith through a variety of formation ministries. We embrace our Roman Catholic identity in this Jesuit parish following in the footsteps of St. Ignatius. We understand faith formation is a life-long journey which nourishes our Spirit in community. As a Eucharistic, Servant, and Pastoral community, we invite, reach out, and look inward as we deepen our faith experiences. Through faith formation experiences, we seek to become disciples and authentic witnesses to the message of Jesus Christ within ourselves, in our families, and in our varied communities.
What are the deepest values that inform our ministries? The Faith Formation Commission listens for those values that most fully guide formation experiences. Core values that have emerged include:
- the experience of trust and relationship in community
- encountering mystery and sacredness
- engaging our story-telling, retelling, and interpreting the word of God
- celebrating our Catholic tradition in sacrament, liturgy, and prayer
- living faith with a preferential option for the poor
- the practice of discernment - listening deeply for the will of God
Our hope is that as you experience the faith formation ministries either as minister or seeker, adult or child, you will feel engaged, inspired, and sense yourself as part of the whole in this community. Please contact staff liaison Dotti Krist-Sterbick at 253.272.5136 ext. 110 with any questions.
The Food Connection Commission serves as the advisory board for the St. Leo Food Connection. A ministry of the parish, the Food Connection operates a variety of emergency food programs throughout Pierce County. The Food Connection has an annual cash budget of more than $600,000, plus donated food and volunteer hours valued at more than $2 million annually. The Commission assists the Director with strategic planning, fund development, and parish and community outreach efforts. The Commission meets quarterly and members are encouraged to serve on one sub-committee. Chair: Julian Bray (JulianBray@clearwire.net). Staff Liaison: Kevin Glackin-Coley (Food Connection Director) 253.572.9405 or email@example.com.
The Liturgy Commission undertakes long-range planning and program evaluation and monitors the liturgical life of the parish. Chair: Shannon O'Donnell Staff liaison: Julie Manley, 253.272.5136 ext. 115.
The Pastoral Care Commission assists the pastor in meeting the spiritual, emotional, and physical needs of the Body of Christ. Each member of Pastoral Care, whether staff or trained steward, is committed to serving with love and integrity demonstrated by the life and ministry of Jesus. Staff liaison: Demetra Schwieger, 253.272.5136 ext. 103.
The mission of the Social Justice Commission - rooted in Catholic Social Teaching and informed by the larger mission of St. Leo as a Jesuit parish - is to live out the Gospel mandate to help realize Godís reign of peace and justice. To this end, the work of the commission has three integrated efforts: education and engagement of all parishioners, whenever possible, in works of justice; integration and collaboration with others in the works of justice and charity; and facilitation of engagement and collaboration between parishioners and other neighborhood groups toward strengthening the quality of life for all residents of the Hilltop neighborhood. Staff liaison: Rick Samyn, 253.272.5136 ext. 102 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The mission of the St. Leo Stewardship Commission is to foster a spirit of recognition that all gifts come from God and we are each called to share and return the gifts of time, talent and treasure with which we have been blessed. This model includes the areas of hospitality, lay ministry, and giving. Co-chairs: Cappri Boitano and Loretta Fotheringham. Staff liaison: Jeff Bemis, 253.272.5136 ext 109.
The Ecumenical and Interfaith Commission works to help the parish proactively collaborate with other faith traditions in prayer and action. Commission members support Associated Ministries and its projects. Members explore the ecumenical and interfaith activities of other congregations. They work to remind homilists at St. Leo to include ecumenical and interfaith concerns in the Prayers of the Faithful and provide educational opportunities for parishioners. Staff liaison: Rick Samyn, 253.272.5136 ext. 102.
The Facilities Commission plans for the construction, renovation, repair, and maintenance of the physical facilities of the parish campus. The Commission works to effectively implement those plans in order to support the St. Leo mission. Chair: Andy Peterson. Staff liaison: Jeff Bemis, 253.272.5136 ext. 109.
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