Tuesday, November 20, 2012

'So what do you do in your new job anyway?'

Here's a glimpse of what my responsibilities as Director of Priestly Formation entail:

> I'm planning a Gospel Workshop for next fall. Every year we have a Scripture scholar do a day-long presentation on the Gospel that will front-and-center during the coming liturgical year. Last week we had our annual workshop on Luke; next year it will be Matthew. The speaker does it all in Cincinnati one day, then again in Dayton.

I'm working with the speaker I have in mind for his preferred dates; then I have to check around with other folks at the Archdiocese to be sure they don't have big events planned for the same dates.

Lots of emails and phone calls. Had several of them today. I just left a message; I hope once I hear back, we can confirm the date.

> I'm working on a possible new program--I won't say much about it, because it may come to nothing; but my hope is to provide a resource that I know pastors and priests will need and benefit from. But before I put it out for all to use, we have to make sure it's completely sound. I've looked at it; I've invited other Archdiocesan staff to look at it. We raised some questions that we hope to resolve. I have someone outside the Archdiocese giving it a professional review. We don't want to put a lot of energy behind something and have egg on our face right away.

> Just got that call back. Our date is confirmed. Just sent the email.

> Two weeks ago, we had a convocation for priests; one of the subjects discussed was priestly fraternity and support. Some of our priests gather with other priests regularly for spiritual support and fraternity; the request was made to me to "get the word out" about "support groups."

Well, I thought about how to do that; and this morning I sent an email to all our priests--for whom I have an email--inviting them to advise me of their group, if they want me to publicize it; otherwise, for them to look around for guys to invite in. I posted something on this on my Heart of Christ blog.

> Several weeks ago, I had a parishioner at Saint Rose ask me to suggest a spiritual director. Not an easy thing to do, since spiritual direction is a special skill, and even those priests and laypeople who provide it, don't necessarily want me to send to them everyone who asks. That led me to look at the list I had of potential spiritual directors, and I decided it was time to update it. In particular, I needed to know if spiritual directors would accept laypeople (some do, some don't). That led me to write a letter to folks on my current list, and send an email to our priests. That generated lots of responses. Now I have to organize all that--that's what I'm putting off doing at the moment.

> I spoke to Bishop Binzer a couple of times today, seeking his guidance on some matters (he's my supervisor). One of them was a workshop he wants me to attend in January. Now I have to make those plans.

All that--plus several phone calls and emails about various matters, some office conversations and some paperwork--gives you some flavor of what I do.

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