Elation At Its Best
As Church, we are blessed by the constant presence of the men and women religious who have answered the call to serve – helping us all to live faith-filled lives. Our pastors play a particularly important role, as they balance their ever-dichotic responsibilities of minister and administrator. For every Mass they serve or sacrament they celebrate, there is also a meeting or managerial obligation to attend to (including their participation in Upon This Rock). This week, we spoke with one of the many pastors who finds grace in bridging both areas of his job.
Fr. Conrad Stachowiak is pastor at Resurrection Parish in Cheektowaga, one of two parishes to have surpassed their Upon This Rock goal this week. He shared that the path to success was not as direct as one would imagine, citing the parish’s $500,000 goal as a daunting challenge, “I’ll admit I was skeptical at first; I think we all were.” With his parish always at the forefront of his mind, Fr. Conrad doubled down on his mission, “no matter what, I was going to do my best. I knew that if I was in tune with the goals – if I could explain how this would truly benefit the Church in Buffalo – we could really make end-roads.”
This drive proved more fruitful than Fr. Conrad could have imagined. “Honestly, I was flabbergasted,” he said, discussing the many ways his parishioners opened up to him during their one-on-one meetings to discuss Upon This Rock. “They believed in the importance of building up our parish, of creating a future for the Church. Not everyone was able to give financially – but those were also people who give to the community in other ways: with their time and their prayers.” After the first Commitment Weekend on October 1 and 2, 175 families had made gifts to Resurrection Parish – surpassing goal by 16%.
Taking meetings and making phone calls could be seen as tedium, but in the case of Fr. Conrad and countless pastors, priests, and deacons throughout the diocese working to make Upon This Rock a success, they have turned them into opportunities to discover the many ways God works through His disciples. To borrow a phrase from Fr. Conrad, “I’m so elated… I can nearly fall over!”
Resurrection Parish will be using its 35% parish share for resurfacing the parking lot and pathways throughout the parish complex. It will also install new carpet and lighting fixtures in various areas of its church. St. James in Jamestown also went over goal, raising 105% of its $555,000 goal. Congratulations to both Fr. Conrad and Fr. Darrell Duffy for all of your continued successes!
Read below for even more good news from the Upon This Rock initiative!