The month of May means summer is right around the corner. There will be an urge to make up for the dark summer of 2020 with gusto. We head into a time when vacation planning is emerging, barbecues are a realistic activity, family reunions may actually be realized and trips to a favorite state park or beach may be eagerly anticipated.
Christian stewards remain mindful, however, that even during this time, the need to be generous continues, especially to our parishes and dioceses. The Christmas spirit has always inspired us to share our material blessings with others. Cold weather also brings out our desire to make sure others are sheltered from winter storms. But often, food and clothing pantry shelves are not quite so full in the summer, even though people are still hungry and need clothing. Even in pre-pandemic times, social service agencies scrambled to fill their rosters with volunteers during the summer. Parish outreach ministries have suffered this past year and need financial contributions to continue during the summer weeks.
Christian stewards are well aware of summer needs, as well as being aware of their own need to give throughout the year. For Christian stewards, the spirituality of gratitude to God is part of their everyday lives and motivates their generosity. Let’s not forget our parishes when we make our summer plans. Let’s make sure to increase our gifts to make up for the past year. Also, many diocesan appeals take place in the spring and summer. Giving to the diocesan annual appeal is an excellent way to support the ministries of the local church that no single parish could undertake by itself. This summer may offer a chance to renew our quest for fun and relaxation in a way that the pandemic, the economy and closures would not allow last summer. Let us be mindful of our parishes, diocesan ministries and other charities that are in need of our support. A plan to continue our generous habits this summer can serve as a great blessing to those in need and serve as an authentic witness to the renewal of our Baptismal promises at Easter.