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Fr. Michael’s First Pastor Article

Dear All Saints Parish Family,

Greetings!  I’m excited to bring you my first Pastor’s Bulletin Article!

First, let me thank EVERYONE for your kind and warm reception of me as your new pastor.  Your many kindnesses are all greatly appreciated, and I’m beginning to feel right at home in the rectory, in the office, and at the altar.  I’m beginning to deeply love our Dunwoody Oasis and all the disciples who gather here in worship, service, and community.

A special thanks to the Legion of Mary and the staff who put on a tremendously successful first event for me, a Q&A to get to know your new priest.  A great time was had and I’m grateful for your enthusiasm and support.  Thank you for lending your voices so beautifully in praise of the Lord! 

I shared that night about how the call of the Lord to St. Francis from the crucifix of San Damiano to “rebuild my church” has been stirring in my heart since visiting Assisi just over a month ago.  The Lord called St. Francis not to build walls and altars, but to rebuild the Church by proclaiming the Gospel of His Son Jesus Christ with passion and conviction, to live the faith boldly, to share it unwaveringly, to fulfill its precepts with fidelity, compassion, and generosity.  The Church, from its inception, isn’t the brick and mortar of old or new buildings, but rather the living stones of the people who follow the Lord Jesus, putting their faith in Him, and who have been given new life by the power and working of His grace in their lives.  I shared that this is the “building” we need to focus on now.  And one simple but significant change that I believe will lay a great foundation is a slight adjustment to our weekend Mass schedule.

Starting Labor Day Weekend, the schedule will be as follows:

Saturday Vigil: 4:00PM

Sunday: 8:00AM, 10:30AM, 12:15PM, 5:00PM

I have three main reasons for implementing this significant change so early in my time with you, and I ask you to prayerfully hear me out.

  1. Faith Formation classes are returning to Sunday, and I want to make it as easy as possible for our families to attend Mass together either before or after classes.
  2. We added Masses during the pandemic which we no longer need, causing some Masses to feel rather empty.
  3. Fewer Masses means we will fill up the pews, helping us all to see that All Saints is in fact, a large and GROWING parish. 

I will work closely with the staff to ensure that any impacted scheduled Mass intentions will have priority rescheduling.

This decision was made after consulting the clergy, the staff, the parish council, and many anecdotal conversations I’ve had with many of you.  I understand and appreciate that change can be difficult, but with our eyes fixed on Jesus, we will adapt and flourish.  May St. Francis (and all the Saints), watch over us, pray for us, and keep always  pointed and open to the Lord!

Praised be Jesus Christ, now and forever.

All you holy saints of God, pray for us!

Fr. Michael