Our Catholic Community of St. Mark’s is a multicultural parish where everyone has something to offer and do for God. We are united in our different talents as we work for God. Many things are happening in our parish community, many groups, committees, and ministries are actively involved in the life of the parish in many ways. They reach out into the wider community and have in many and varied ways touched and continue to touch the lives of many people. We therefore, invite you to be part of our parish community and then to use your God’s given talent to work with us for the greater glory of the Almighty God.
Our parish stems from Christ in the Eucharist: Sharing in the Body of Christ, we seek to:
- Know the heart of Christ
- See the face of Christ
- Be the hands of Christ
- St. Mark’s is 52 years rich with history, but this history continues to be written with each visitor and new parishioner we welcome.
What do you need to know about our parish? We have put together this welcome book and included a ministry brochure. We hope that you and your household will find ways that our parish can fulfill your faith needs. We look forward to seeing you, and may God bless you. Again, welcome to your new parish.
- If you have questions please call one of our secretaries, Gaby or Claudia 760-744-1540 and they will assist you.
- Learn ways you can get involved at St, Mark’s by browsing our site, our weekly bulletins or our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages or contact our Kathleen Cook our Stewardship Director at 760-744-1540 or firstname.lastname@example.org
The Stewardship here at St. Mark’s is a living example of discipleship. It is picking up our daily cross and following Jesus. We do this by living as a steward of Christ: taking care of something that belongs to someone else. How can we be stewards and follow Jesus in our own community?
God has blessed us all with talents; some we are aware of and others we may not realize yet. Using our talents to do God’s work can be one of the most personally fulfilling opportunities of our life.
Let us consider others as we enjoy the gifts we are blessed with. Take care not be consumed with material items but to appreciate and share them in order to bring justice and charity to those in need. There is no answer to how you should give; give according to what you have been given.
The gift of time is exactly that — a gift. We must treasure this most precious gift God has given us for we do not know how much of it we have. Let us use our time at home amongst family and friends, at work interacting with colleagues and throughout our lives to conduct ourselves in the spirit of God’s commandment: “love thy neighbor as we love ourselves.” Let us be influenced through participation at Mass to lead a Christ-centered life and to bring faith to our future generations through the gift of our time.
Wonderful articles about Stewardship
- What is My Attitude Towards Giving, Homily by Deacon Frank
- Little Brown Envelopes, A Stewardship Witness Testimony by Susan Ferraris
Contact the Stewardship Office by email at email@example.com or call 760-744-1540 ext. 234
What is Stewardship?
It is a lifestyle, a life of total accountability and responsibility. It is the acknowledging of God as the Creator and Owner of all. Christian Stewards see themselves as the caretakers of all Gods’ gifts. Gratitude for these many gifts is expressed in prayer, worship, offering and action. Stewardship is a way of life. It is a way of thanking God for all our blessings by returning to God a portion of the many gifts (everything we have, for instance, our time, talent and treasure) that we have been given. It involves the intentional, planned and proportionate giving of all we have.
Finally, stewardship encourages everyone to participate in the task of building the Kingdom of God. When we explain that God has given each of us certain things, that these gifts are our responsibility to care for, and that we are accountable for what we do with these gifts, then there is no doubt that everyone should be involved. Stewardship rejects the notion that we must “have it all” and instead, demonstrates the value of giving in love, in service and in justice.
Stewardship is based on the spiritual principles of the Old Testament and the teachings of Jesus Christ.
“Christ has no body now on earth but yours, no hands but yours, yours are the eyes through which he is go about doing good, yours are the hands with which he is to bless people now…” (St. Teresa of Avila)
What difference will Stewardship make in my life?
The difference is the motivation for giving. It is so easy to put our lives on hold and with it all of our good intentions. “Someday when I have more time” or “When I’ve reached my goals” or “I’ll give my share of time, talent and treasure but not right now.” What will we tell those in need of prayer, in need of a kind ear or the hundreds of other acts of stewardship that will go undone and the gifts that the Lord has given us that will go unshared if we all were to think that way? Stewardship acknowledges that God is the source of all of our gifts and talents, and we are the caretakers of these gifts.
“Boast not of tomorrow, for you know not what any day may bring forth.” (Proverbs 27:1)
What does intentional, planned and proportionate giving mean?
Once a year St. Mark’s requests that the community re-new their financial commitment. It is when we ask each of the members to renew their commitment to living as Stewards of God’s gifts.
Jesus made it clear in the scriptures that being stewards of all the gifts God has given us (like our time, talent and treasure) is part of the will of God.
“Put your gifts at the service of one another, each in the measure he has received… Thus in all of you God is to be glorified.” (1 Peter 4:10, 11)
What is meant by giving of one’s time, talent, and material possessions?
Our time, our talents, and our material possessions constitute just some of the treasures we have been given by our very generous God. Sharing these gifts involves being with God in prayer and worship, using our gifts to help build God’s Kingdom among our family and friends, our workplace, and our communities and parishes. It means becoming ministers of the Gospel in our communities and parishes in new ways!
“Men do not light a lamp and then put it under a bushel basket. They set it on a stand where it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, your light must shine before men so that they may see goodness in your acts and give praise to your heavenly father.” (Mark 5:14-16)
Am I expected to give all I have been given to the church?
No. The church teaches that the primary vocation of the laity is to transform the world to Christ. We do this best when we share and use the gifts our generous God has given us in love and justice first at home, then in the workplace, then in our communities and parishes. Certainly, however, the parish is a focal point for coming together as disciples of Jesus. It is in the parish that we join with one another to celebrate our faith, share in the Eucharist, and become empowered to be Eucharist (the Body of Christ) in the world. Our parish is central to our gathering for prayer and worship, celebrating the Sacraments, meeting for and planning together the work of the church, and celebrating the gift of each other. We have an important responsibility to our parish to plan ways we can use and share our gifts there, but we must remember that our sense of stewardship needs to be kept broad and holistic.
The life of a Christian steward models the life of Jesus. It is challenging and even difficult, in many respects, yet intense joy comes to those who take the risk to live as Christian stewards. Women and men who seek to live as stewards learn that.
“All things work for good for those who love God.” (Rom. 8: 28)
What’s the difference between Stewardship and fund raising?
Throughout the New Testament, Jesus specifically talks about how God wants us to live our lives to help build God’s Kingdom. Scripture talks about what we should be doing with the gifts that God has given us. Stewardship is based on Jesus’ challenge to live as God has planned, not on the monetary needs of our parish. Stewardship is based on our need to give out of gratitude to our most generous God, not on the church’s need to receive.
There will always be needs of a parish or any other charity or institution. Fund raising efforts are built around institutional or charitable needs (a new roof, new flooring, renovated buildings, etc.) Good stewards respond to the needs that fund raising efforts address, but they always focus on the primary fact that, as disciples of Jesus who have been gifted by a most generous God, we need to give!
“Happiness lies more in giving than in receiving.” (Acts 20:35)
What’s the difference between Stewardship and tithing?
In terms of financial resources, Stewardship invites parishioners to give a percentage of their income that represents their sacrifice to the parish and other charities. Tithing is the biblical notion of giving one-tenth (10%) of our money. Good stewards reflect upon their current level of giving, and consider “Taking-a-Step” to a higher level of giving, if possible. The ultimate goal may be to achieve the biblical tithe, or it could be less or more, depending upon what a person/family has concluded through prayer and reflection. The important thing is to take the first step of faith by putting God first.
“What is biblical stewardship?”
Discovering what the Bible says about stewardship is the key to the answer. If we start with the very first verse: “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth” (Genesis 1:1). As the Creator, God has absolute rights of ownership over all things, nothing else in the Bible, including the doctrine of stewardship, will make any sense or have any true relevance if we miss the fact that God is the Creator and has full rights of ownership. It is through our ability to fully grasp this and imbed it in our hearts that the doctrine of stewardship is understood.
The biblical doctrine of stewardship defines a man’s relationship to God. I t identifies God as owner and man as manager. God makes man His co-worker in administering all aspects of our life. The apostle Paul explains it best by saying, “For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, God’s building” (1 Corinthians 3:9).
More often than not, when we think of good stewardship, we think of how we manage our finances and our faithfulness in paying God’s tithes and offerings. But as we’re beginning to see, it’s much more than that. In fact, it’s more than just the management of our time, our possessions, our environment, or our health. Stewardship is our obedient witness to God’s sovereignty. It’s what motivates the follower of Christ to move into action, doing deeds that manifest his belief in Him. Paul’s stewardship involved proclaiming that which was entrusted to him—the gospel truth.
Stewardship defines our practical obedience in the administration of everything under our control, everything entrusted to us. It is the consecration of one’s self and possessions to God’s service. Stewardship acknowledges in practice that we do not have the right of control over ourselves or our property—God has that control. It means as stewards of God we are managers of that which belongs to God, and we are under His constant authority as we administer His affairs. Faithful stewardship means that we fully acknowledge we are not our own but belong to Christ, the Lord, who gave Himself for us.
The ultimate question, then, is this: Am I the lord of my life, or is Christ the Lord of my life?
In essence, stewardship expresses our total obedience to God and our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.