Stewardship of Talent
We are awakened to the unique gifts and talents that God has bestowed upon each and every one of us. Through baptism, we become one in the body of Christ, and we are called to share our talents generously for the greater good of our community.
Stewardship of Talent is a full appreciation of the manner in which God works within us to ignite our faith so that we become instruments of His love. In developing a greater awareness of God in our lives, we discern new priorities and extend our sense of freedom and joy. Stewardship is a response to faith ignited. The more we participate in nurturing and sharing our gifts of talent, the more we develop our full potential in becoming the people that God created us to be.
From the youngest to the oldest, every member of our parish family plays a critical role in sustaining and growing our stewardship parish so that its transformative charism of discipleship can be felt throughout the world.
Ministry as a School of Formation
Each ministry area is like a classroom in the great school of formation for the contemporary disciple. At St. Gianna’s, we have seven schools of ministry formation:
Ministries of the Word
Ministries of the Eucharist
Ministries of Music
Ministries of Faith Formation
Ministries of Christian Mission
Ministries of Environment & Liturgical Arts
Ministries of Community Building
Ensuring Vibrancy and Growth
St. Gianna’s Parish has developed policies in ministry to ensure vibrant growth within our membership. Parishioners may become involved in a maximum of one ministry per ministry area, (Liturgical, Faith, Community) and their commitment to that particular ministry is for a maximum duration of three years. At the conclusion of the three years, members are encouraged to explore a different area of ministry so as to ensure a diversified experience and optimal talent development over the long term.
Leadership in ministry is also cultivated on an ongoing basis. We have established a succession plan to ensure continued leadership and smooth leadership transitions from year to year with each ministry area. Ideally, the official leader of any given ministry is an individual currently in his/her third year of service in that particular ministry area. He/she is supported by two additional leaders, respectively in years 2 and 1 of their service in the ministry. Each year, a new ‘year 1’ leader is selected by the existing leaders from the newest ministry participants in each ministry.
A three year membership rotation and leadership succession planning are beneficial to both ministry participants and the parish as a whole. There is always a balance of experience and fresh ideas within each ministry group, as well as a fluidity of movement from ministry area to another. This, in conjunction with the ongoing focus on building leadership capacity, supports members in understanding their role as members in the Body of Christ.
Ministry for All
St. Gianna’s Parish acknowledges the critical role played by each member in growing and sustaining our stewardship parish. For these reasons, ministry is open to a variety of ages, and a select group of ministry areas are open to non-Catholic members. Participation in our Children’s Faith Formation program requires each child to participate in exposure to one Liturgical ministry each year. In addition, a number of ministries are open to non-Catholic spouses of existing members, so that they too can share their resources within our faith community and participate in their family’s faith journey.
Creating a Policy Manual
Our Parish Pastoral Council developed a policy manual describing the responsibilities associated with each ministry area. Ministry leaders share the policy descriptions with new members as they join the ministry. Our policy manual is a living document, in that it is constantly evolving as varying needs are addressed over the course of any given year.
Faith Formation within Ministry
Adult faith formation is critical to nurturing members’ understanding and ability to embrace the stewardship way of life. At St. Gianna’s, adult faith formation sessions are offered annually to support our members in understanding and responding to the call to ministry.
Ministry versus Task… Our Next Steps in Ministry
As we continue to grow our stewardship parish, we are supporting our ministry leaders and participants in going beyond the exercise of performing ‘tasks’ to reaching a level of ministry that cultivates an experience of community. No ministry is kept in isolation, but always destined to a fuller encounter with the life of the greater community. The greater community is enriched through its encounter with each ministry, as something of each ministry challenges, awakens, ignites and calls forth.
Ministry is not about completing tasks. Ministry is about participating in the mission of Jesus, and by doing so, experiencing true personal conversion. As a consequence, our lives are changed, our relationships are changed and our world is changed.
It is never about what we do, but rather how we do it and what transpires along the way.
Tasks get done while ministry is happening.
click: Talent Commitment Card