As disciples of Jesus, we look for God present in all things, that we might love him and serve him in all things.
Our Way of Proceeding:
- All that we do we do with profound gratitude to God.
- We are a prayerful and reflective people, yet we are always ready to move into active service of our brothers and sisters.
- We are in communion with the Roman Catholic Church of Atlanta, Georgia. We are faithful to the Church’s teaching and committed to its apostolic priorities.
- We are the Body of Christ, inclusive of all, leaving no one at the margins, and recognizing the dignity of all persons.
- Our ordinary way of making decisions at St. Thomas More is through a process of discernment. This process is prayerful from beginning to end, is one in which each participant is quick to listen to the other and presumes the best intentions in the other. It is a process in which each participant is ready to learn from the other, and which always seeks consensus.
- Our ordinary way of serving God’s people is in collaboration with one another, including people of good will outside of our parish community.
- We are ever searching for and ready to undertake whatever serves the greater glory of God and the fuller service of our neighbor.
- We, parishioners and pastor, are colleagues in ministry. We share responsibility for governance of the community at St. Thomas More. Our collaboration is based on our respect for one another and a shared understanding of our parish identity and mission. Parish governance is characterized by transparency, broad participation, and mutual accountability.
Parish Ministries –
Sunday Eucharist is the source and center of our parish life; it is where our transformation into a communion with Jesus and one another, which began at our Baptism, continues. We celebrate Eucharist in a manner that promotes the full, active, and conscious participation of all those present, that is creative, enthusiastic, and challenging, and that includes prophetic preaching that is true to the Gospel.
Prayer and Faith Formation –
Ignatian prayer and spirituality, which is based on the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius, informs all that we do at St. Thomas More, especially our prayer and faith formation programs. Through these, we discover God in all things, are drawn into personal relationship with Jesus, and are freed for active service of our neighbor. While we encourage all forms of prayer, we have a particular commitment to the teaching, promotion, and practice of Ignatian prayer.
Through our prayer and faith formation programs, we encourage each parishioner’s growth in the knowledge and the love of God, regardless of one’s age, level of formal education, or ability. Our first priority is to facilitate an encounter and relationship with Jesus that we live out both individually and as a parish community.
We offer prayer and faith formation programs that are suitable for persons of all ages, levels of formal education, and abilities, and that encourage constructive and respectful engagement with what may be unfamiliar and challenging. We give special attention to our children and teens, wherever they attend school. Nevertheless, our parish school is a major ministry of the parish through which we form our children to be “men and women for others.”
Community Life and Care –
With the help of the Spirit, we are building a parish community that includes all, encourages the active involvement of all, and leaves no one on the margins. Consistent with our resources, we offer a variety of programs that are meant to deepen the bonds of friendship among us, and that are responsive to the material, physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of all of our parish members. We are especially attentive to families with young children, to the elderly and the sick, and to those parishioners with special needs.
Social Justice/Outreach –
Although we care for one another, St. Thomas More is outwardly oriented for service to those beyond the boundaries of our parish, especially to those most in need. The goal of our social justice and outreach programs is to deepen our sense of responsibility for our brothers and sisters in need, and to develop a strong, sense of solidarity with all men and women, regardless of their circumstances.
Our social justice/outreach effort has four dimensions: 1) direct service that puts parishioners in personal contact with those in need and that encourages relationships; 2) advocacy consistent with traditional Catholic social teaching and the specific directives of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and the Jesuit Provincials; 3) education aimed at informing and inspiring action; and 4) financial support of worthy organizations that are in service to those who are most in need.
Recommended by the St. Thomas More Parish Council and adopted by the Pastor, 1/23/18