Fr. Frank Barron found it and it is good
Fr. Frank Barron contributed an article to Our Sunday Visitor and I found one part particularly interesting.
"In a now famous intervention made during the General Congregations held in advance of the conclave, Cardinal Bergoglio said that the Church was too inward-turned, too preoccupied with its own life. The purpose of the Church of Jesus Christ, he continued, is to go out to the wider world, especially to those on the periphery. By this evocative term (periferia in Italian), he meant not only those who are economically deprived or marginalized, but those who find themselves spiritually on the outs"
The church was too inward-turned... Was? I think many Catholic Parishes can substitute "was" for "are". What I mean is, right now people, especially young people, are seeking organizations and activity that has a purpose larger than itself. True the Catholic Churches mission is bigger than itself but that is not the story told by the parish. Read darn any church bulletin and the words "we need" can be read each weekend multiple times in the same issue. Announcements, posters, parish website articles all follow a very similar pattern.."we need". Frankly that message is perfectly uninspiring. Frank Mercadante in his book Engaging a New Generation indicates that the next generation really don't care that a parish has to pay bills, cover health care for employees, or buy sacramental wine. What they do care about very much is that the parish is doing something beyond keeping the plant running. That poor are being fed, single moms are being tended, and any cadre of ministries about others outside of the church property. To that end, I would suggest anyone in Generation X (people in their 40s as of this writing) on down have a similar mindset.
What parishes too often fall into is the trap of "me". We have evolved into big organizations that take much over head and resources to keep going. That is not a bad thing. That is actually very good as each parish has much work to do for Jesus. But as we have evolved we lost our missionary spirit. That call to go out and do the work so desperately needs done. As a result of the "me" language (we church folks often criticize in culture) that is being used, our message is falling flat. Our parishes are being ignored and we often wonder why the young and middle aged folks have checked out and we struggle to....yup, pay the bills.
The remedy to what we currently work with and worship in, is to do as instructed "go out to the wider world". When we connect people in the pews to people not in the pews and use language filled with the love of Jesus, the life of our parish will change.
Read the whole article here