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Sunday, April 20, 2014

Solemnity of the Resurrection of the Lord (Easter Sunday)

Praise for a sacrifice

At Easter time the church includes a special prayer in its worship, the Victimae Paschali Laudes, the title of which comes from its first line: “Christians, to the Paschal Victim offer your thankful praises!” At one time there were many prayers of this kind but today mainly four are in use: Victimae Paschali (Easter), Veni, Sancte Spiritus (Pentecost), Lauda Sion (Corpus Christi), and Stabat Mater (Our Lady of Sorrows). The “victim” of the Easter prayer, however, is not passive: It’s the Son of God come down to actively offer himself back to God. With him all Christians do the same with themselves.

Today’s readings: Acts 10:34a, 37-43; Colossians 3:1-4 or 1 Corinthians 5:6b-8; John 20:1-9 (42). “This man God raised on the third day and granted that he be visible.”

©2014 by TrueQuest Communications. TakeFiveForFaith.com; 800-942-2811; mail@takefiveforfaith.com. All rights reserved. Daily email sign-up and App available online. Noncommercial reprints permitted with the following credit: Reprinted with permission from TakeFiveForFaith.com. Scripture citations from the New American Bible Revised Edition.

Tools for Rebuilding: 75 Really, Really Practical Ways to Make Your Parish Better

In their barn-burning first book, Rebuilt, Michael White and Tom Corcoran shared their story and vision of building better Catholic parishes. Now, in their eagerly-anticipated second book, White and Corcoran lay out seventy-five proven tactics for getting the job done.

Fr. Michael White and Tom Corcoran know that the fundamental work of the Church is to evangelize--to introduce people to Christ and make them disciples. Still, they're the first to admit: "the difficulty comes when we reach down into the details and get to work." In Tools for Rebuilding, White and Corcoran share seventy-five foundational tactics that helped to rejuvenate their parish. Their candid, hands-on advice gives a clear way forward--one that will make church matter to the people in the pews and that anyone working in parish ministry can implement.

Principles/tactics include:

  • Get the Right People on the Bus
  • Christmas Is Over, So Throw Out the Dead Poinsettias
  • Stop Advertising (Other People's Stuff) in Your Bulletin
  • Don't Let the Insiders Take All the Good Seats
  • Just Because It's Slow Doesn't Mean It's Holy
  • When It Comes to First Communion, Just Surrender
  • Funerals Are Scud Missiles
  • Preach the Announcements
  • Start Getting Rid of Fundraisers
  • Everything Takes Longer (Than You Think)
  • Pastor, It's Not All About You
  • Stop Trying to Make People Go to Church and Make Church Matter
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