2.3 Celebrate Parish Patrons

Church Reversed

“Each of us is called to actively participate as a member of a parish, the Universal Church and our local Church, led by our archbishop. Parishes continually deepen the bonds of communion with other parishes.” (Church principle)

As one Church, you need to build upon the ecclesial cultural traditions of the parishes that make up your Family of Parishes and indeed the archdiocese. Given that celebrating the Eucharist is the “source and summit” of Catholic life, what better way to continue to forge a common identity across your Family of Parishes than to build on the sacramental celebrations of the patrons of each parish. Celebrating each patronal feast day in each and every one of the parishes within your Family of Parishes reinforces the unity of the communion of saints, as well as the unity of your Family. 

A vision point for the Church principle is Local & Universal:

People come to understand the nature of the parish as the people within a given territory and therefore grow in understanding themselves as members of Christ’s Body, the Church.

To reinforce this, celebrate well on feast days specific to the entire archdiocese, such as the feast of St. Francis de Sales (patron of the archdiocese) or St. Robert Bellarmine (the archdiocese’s secondary patron), or to the whole church, such as the feast of the Chair of St. Peter or the Dedication of the Lateran Basilica.

Of course, there are other possible activities to reinforce the common liturgical bond within your Family of Parishes:

  • Hold open house gatherings in each parish with displays that tell the story of the parish, tours of the parish campus and food (especially of the ethnic groups in the parish).
  • Include the history of each parish on your Family website (and on each parish’s website).
  • Create displays of historical artifacts from each parish.