Parish as Family
“[P]arish life is especially related to the strengths and weaknesses and needs of the families that make it up.” Like a family, one parish or another may become fragmented. Lack of concern, cooperation, or involvement — any ailment that can plague a family can also affect a parish. Often, when individuals or families are affected by these, the parish is also affected, and this may lead to further discouragement in participation and interest in parish life. We may not care for every aspect of a particular parish experience: We may not like the music or the church architecture, or perhaps the homilies leave us untouched; maybe we even feel isolated or out of place. But we must remember two things. First, the Eucharist is the central and unifying element that supersedes any cosmetic issues we may see. Second, we should remember that we have an integral role to play in the parish. Its vitality depends in no smll measure on the vitality breathed into it by each parishioner.