Fr. James Mallon, pastor of Saint Benedict’s in Halifax, Nova Scotia, yearns for a parish full of deeper connection, heightened spirituality, and more infectious outreach – and he’s getting there!
Fr. James is a pioneer in the ‘new evangelization’ movement that is energizing the Roman Catholic church and in this interview tells us how he’s working to create a culture of deep community in his parish.
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Saint Benedict is a new parish, made of 3 older ones, and Fr. James Mallon is working to inspire all sorts of newness there. An Alpha Course advocate, Fr. James is launching some innovative and inspiring new programs birthed from his work and interest in the New Evangelization movement sweeping the Roman Catholic church. Here are my notes from the interview:
Pastorates NOT Small Groups
Instilling a sense of intimate community into a structure that is simply not used to this is certainly difficult work. One strategy is ‘pastorates,’ which are 25-35 person groups that meet twice a month. Different than ‘small groups’ but perhaps more realistic.
Time, Talent, and Treasure on Steroids
Instead of simply preaching about it once a year, Fr. James is implementing 3 separate drives during the year – one for each of the “T”‘s. He’s also redefined ‘Time’ to mean the amount of time one devotes to intentional spiritual development.
Parish Ministry Counselor
That’s the title of a staff person whose main job is to help people identify their individual gifts, then to match that with a ministry either inside the church or outside the church. Does your church need a person like this?
About Fr. James
Fr. James Mallon is a Roman Catholic priest serving the parish of St. Benedict Catholic Church in Halifax, Nova Scotia. After graduating from seminary in Toronto, he worked as a vocations director, then at two other parishes. He is also the host of a video series called Dogmatic Theology, as well as a popular conference speaker on The New Evangelization. He also founded the Pope John Paul II media center.
Books Fr. James Recommends
Growing an Engaged Church – Al Winesman
Courageous Leadership - Bill Hybels
The New Evangelization – Steve Boguslawski and Ralph Martin
Stewardship of Time – pdf Download as mentioned in the interview