Wisdom from Archbishop Murphy

Wisdom from Archbishop Murphy

Feast of St. Luke the Evangelist

The ancient tradition of the Church holds that St. Luke was a doctor from Syria.  He traveled with St. Paul and was with him in Rome when St. Paul died.  He then traveled to Greece where he wrote the Gospel that bears his name and the Actos of the Apostles.  Whatever else he was and did, it is for these two books of the New Testament that he is best remembered.  And that has profound implications for stewardship.  This Gentile convert, inspired by the Holy Spirit, was clearly a gifted writer and teacher.  His books are not a simple recounting of events, but a kind of preaching, a way of telling the good news of Jesus Christ and story of the early Church that reaches across time and invites his readers into relationship with Jesus.  This good steward put his gifts at God’s disposal, allowed himself to be led by God’s Spirit, and so is still serving the Lord as an evangelist—still preaching and teaching—20 centuries later!  The Lord will multiply our gits, too, if we will use them in his service.

-taken from “Steward Saints For Every Day” by Sharon Hueckel

Although we are not all called to be evangelists in the same sense St. Luke was, we are all called, by virtue of our baptism, into the prophetic ministry of Jesus.  We are all called to tell the Good News of
Jesus Christ.

Recently, I read the book, “What Do I Own and What Owns Me?” by Daniel Conway.  This short book is a great introduction to Stewardship.  In my copy, there was also a DVD with four short segments from a talk given by Archbishop Murphy, who was part of the Bishop’s committee that developed “A Steward’s Response”, the pastoral letter on stewardship.  These short clips (5-8 minutes long) are also available on You Tube. 

As I watched them and read this book, I thought they both could be used by Stewardship committees as “continuing education”  as tools to help equip us to tell the good news of stewardship. Would you consider taking the first 10 minutes of your next several meetings to view and discuss these clips?  The book, too, could be used in this way.  The chapters are very short and have discussion questions at the end.  I think you will find them both encouraging and enlightening!

Since I recently celebrated my birthday, I really appreciated this 3rd segment in the series and laughed out loud at the “Irish Optimism”:


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Summit 2017 – Worth Watching? You Bet!

The 2017 Stewardship Summit was held last Friday and Saturday and it was a fantastic event!  Chris Stewart and Tony Brandt, from Wichita, KS shared inspirational stories, and wonderful practical tools for living a life of stewardship.  They also challenged us to grow!  All of the workshops went smoothly and we do not have one negative comment on an evaluation!  Everyone who completed an evaluation gave it high marks.  Here are a few comments from participants:

  • Outstanding, Motivational, Inspiring!
  • Really a meaningful exchange of information.  So glad we came!
  • The speakers were amazing and inspired us with many ideas to pray about.  The breakout sessions were also really good and gave us some great information to help us and others grow in holiness. 
  • Had a wonderful time and appreciate all of your hard work!
  • Every person should hear this message!  It is applicable no matter what your age or your work or how involved you are in the Church.
  • What people are saying to me about the Summit is that the talks and workshops were so applicable to daily life.
  • “I think it’s our best one so far!”  – Bishop Gruss

Those families who took advantage of our Youth Track were very grateful.  Here are a couple of comments:

  • The kids track was ESSENTIAL to me – all five of my kids attended and loved it. I would not have been able to attend the Summit without the track – please consider offering this option in the future!
  • I am so glad you had the spot for the kids. I wanted to come last year but had no place for my son to go.  This year you did and I am so glad.  And my son had a great time!

If you came, but didn’t get a chance to fill out an evaluation, please take a few minutes to do so RIGHT NOW!  Your comments really do help us to plan for next year. 

If you didn’t come, we missed you!  But we don’t want you to miss out on the great information presented!  All of the talks from the Summit are posted for you in two places:

  • Audio and some Video on our website at: 
  • Audio available on the Rapid City Diocese’s Podcast.  Open Podcasts on your smart phone or tablet, search for “Rapid City Diocese”, download the talks and enjoy!

Mark your calendars now for next year’s Summit to be held September 21-22 at Terra Sancta Retreat Center.  We are already working on great ideas for next year. 

Learning To Drop the Net

All the parishes by this time should have received their posters and fliers for the third annual Stewardship Summit being held Friday- Saturday, September 29 – 30 at the Terra Sancta Retreat Center in Rapid City. I hope you have noticed them!

            As another way to help publicize this year’s Stewardship Summit in your parishes we have produced a short, eight-minute DVD. In the DVD, several parishioners from the diocese, who have participated in the Summit in the past, share how why they went and why they would invite others to come. They have found the Summit to be a valuable experience for them in living out a life of stewardship through generous hospitality and lively faith. I also invite those watching to attend and give a short synopsis of what the Summit offers.

The theme for this year Stewardship Summit is “Learning to Drop the Net” with Casting Nets Ministries, which will focus on the third lens of our Stewardship initiative:  Dedicated Discipleship.  Our keynote speakers are Tony Brandt and Chris Stewart of Casting Nets Ministries. “Tony and Chris have been speaking all over the country for more than a decade proclaiming the saving Gospel of Jesus Christ and equipping Catholics to become Missionary Disciples,”  according to their website.

Both are former teachers who bring warmth, humor and wisdom to their presentations. They have great stories to tell about their own experiences living as dedicated disciples in the Diocese of Wichita, which has a rich and successful tradition of stewardship. They will give three addresses during the summit and will share with us their Seven Pillars of Effective Evangelization. 

In addition to these talks, eight workshops will be offered. Bishop Robert Gruss has generously agreed to lead three workshops. Fr. Jonathan Dillon, who is the pastor of the parish clusters in Gregory County, will be back with three more stories of great saints and I will share wisdom from Brandon Vogt’s book, Return, which outlines proven steps for drawing your adult child back to the church. 

An addition to our conference this year is a youth track – meaningful play and age appropriate stewardship lessons for toddlers through 9th grade. 

I would really like to encourage all stewardship committees to take an active role in reaching out to members of your parish communities and your families, to personally invite them to the Summit.  Do not take the week easy way out and simply put up the posters and fliers in the narthex gathering areas of your parishes, but instead take a few fliers and personally invite a parishioner, a family to the summit. Hand them a flier yourself. I would also encourage the parish stewardship committees to help promote the Summit by organizing different parish groups and organizations to view the DVD*.  Personal invitations are always the best and produce the best type of fruit.

In the past, stewardship committees have not been well represented at the summit themselves.  If stewardship committees could take a more active role by participating in the summit, it could go a long ways re-energize your stewardship committees in your parishes.

This Summit is for you!

2017 Summit Talks