[quote=slewi]On Sunday our priest announced that due to rising heating costs, from January - March we will be having our Saturday and Sunday mass in the basement of the church. This is where we have flea markets and bingo…I really don’t want to believe this is appropriate?
As Karin said, if your parish is suffering from a severe cash crunch, I think that the Pastor is letting people know that the only way to stay in business is for revenue (donations) to increase or he will have to cut costs. Since parish’s are long on fixed costs (debt/interest, utilities, insurance) and short on variable costs (wages), these decisions don’t leave a lot of room for discretion.
Furthermore, if you were to ask all the priests if they became a Priest to apply their business acumen to efficiently running a parish, not one would answer in the affirmative. In fact, business acumen is a skill that few possess.
Finally, your Pastor is first and foremost a Pastor. Knowing that the heating cost pressure being experienced by the parish is also being experienced by your parishioners, he probably is uncomfortable adding to the budget dilemma’s of the parishioners and thinks that the best pastoral decision is to have the parish share in the “pain.”
This may or may not be the best decision. I suggest you search out a finance committee or Pastoral Counsel member and talk thru all the alternatives including a special appeal to get donations for heating costs for the winter. I think this is a time when the collective wisdom of parishioners with fundraising and business acumen augment the Priest’s skills.