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The Pastor’s Connection – August 16, 2018

Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.

The eyes of the Lord are directed toward the righteous and his ears toward their cry.

The Lord’s face is against evildoers to wipe out their memory from the earth.

The righteous cry out, the Lord hearsand he rescues them from all their afflictions.

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted, saves those whose spirit is crushMany are the troubles of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him from them all.  (Psalm 34: 15-20)

 

Dear Saint Stephen Parishioners,

 

I write to you this week with a heavy heart. As the terrible news of the hundreds of

children who were sexually abused by at least 300 priests in Pennsylvania is spreading, I

am saddened and sickened by the evil that was inflicted upon innocent victims by people

who were supposed to be images of trust, mercy, and holiness. Most of these incidents

took place before 1990, and reveal a culture of ignoring and covering up allegations by

Church leaders. Since The Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People was

established in 2002, clear guidelines have been enforced in order to provide a safe

environment for young people, to communicate the steps that must be taken to respond

to allegations, to assist in the healing and reconciliation of victims and survivors, to

communicate with civil authorities, and to provide means of accountability for the future.

 

Yet even as the Church enforces the Charter, we recognize that there continues to be

priests who violate appropriate boundaries in their relationships with young people. While

the focus is on those who have taken advantage of vulnerable young people, those of us

who are striving to live the gift of Priesthood in a holy and healthy manner are saddened,

angered, and embarrassed by the tragic decisions made by priests. Through this

scandal, I fear that the Church has lost her credibility, and we have some very difficult

work ahead of us in order to restore people’s trust in the Church and her leaders.

 

As we move forward, I encourage you to turn to the Lord for healing, strength, and

guidance. As the words of Psalm 34 tell us, “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted,

saves those whose spirit is crushed.” Please pray for all survivors of sexual abuse, that

they may experience healing and strength in God’s loving presence. Pray also for the

Church, that we may confront the darkness of sexual abuse and other acts of evil in our

midst, and be tireless in our efforts to build up the Body of Christ through the way that we

show mercy and compassion toward all of God’s people.

 

In Christ,

Father Dave

 

Announcement:

We have made a change to the weekly email that is delivered to parishioners. There will continue to be a weekly email, but it will include upcoming activities, and opportunities for parishioners to be involved in the ministries, activities, and social events of the parish. The Pastor’s Connection will continue, but it will not be a weekly message.

Saint Stephen the Martyr Catholic Church

Director of Communication

Saint Stephen the Martyr Catholic Church in Omaha, Nebraska, is seeking a full-time Director of Communication.

The Director of Communication is responsible for developing and overseeing a comprehensive, clear, and consistent communication strategy to articulate and advance the mission of Saint Stephen the Martyr Parish. The Director will work closely with the staff and lay leadership to support and enhance communication among the areas of ministry, in the parish, and in the community.

The ideal candidate is a thoughtful leader, strategic thinker, experienced writer, creative problem-solver, and valuable team member. They have excellent skills in preparing all written publications and in developing and maintaining websites and a digital presence.

Qualifications:

  • Practicing Catholic with a servant mentality; has the ability to engage all parishioners, staff, and those seeking Christ with a spirit of faith, hope, and charity
  • Highly collaborative style; ability to develop and maintain healthy working relationships with staff members, members of the parish, and members of the community
  • Excellent writing, editing, and verbal communication skills
  • Organized and able to manage multiple projects
  • Degree in communications or a closely-related field and/or successful experience in a similar field
  • Effective skills with computer and internet-based technologies

Send a cover letter stating your interest and qualifications for the position, a current resume, and 2 or 3 references including names and contact information to Father David Belt at d.belt@stephen.org, or to 16701 S Street, Omaha, NE 68135. Applications will be accepted through September 4th.

Serving Christ in Serving You

“Creating disciples with a clear understanding that everything we have is a gift from God and, therefore, we give back to God out of a profound sense of gratitude.”

Deacon Ernest J. Abbott, Jr.

Director of Stewardship & Development

St. Stephen Church of Omaha

16701 S Street

Omaha, NE 68135

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