ST. CHARLES PARISH REDEVELOPMENT
FROM THE PASTOR
May 7, 2018
I am happy to report that the consultation phase regarding a potential parish site redevelopment has concluded, having spent ten months soliciting broad feedback from representative parishioners and from diocesan officials, according to a plan approved by Bishop Burbidge. I have submitted a report to the bishop explaining that the consultations resulted in excitement and in a consensus in favor of a redeveloped parish campus which fosters our fundamental mission of comprehensive evangelization, designed with a particular focus on:
- Reaching out to and welcoming not only parishioners but also
- non-practicing Catholics and non-Catholics
- young adults
- young families with children
- A desire for beauty
- for a house of worship of traditional form which is a sign that inspires
- for appealing design which draws people in and together
- for an oasis of calm in the heart of the city
- for an urban campus integrated with the church and with the neighborhood
- The need for functionality
- for increased activity and meeting areas of different sizes and styles
- for supporting integral formation in the faith
- for innovative social spaces attractive to young adults
- for accessibility for pedestrians and for vehicles
- A call to generosity
- to form and to engage parishioners' support through their time, talent and treasure
- to reach out to and to serve the community with the Gospel of mercy
- The responsibility for sustainability providing
- longevity of structures
- efficient maintenance, energy use and waste management
- green spaces
- financial stability
The consensus was that the current parish physical plant does not support those aspects of our mission as well as a redeveloped campus could.
A strong majority of parish stakeholders, and all diocesan stakeholders, are enthusiastic about the possibilities that a future redevelopment of the St. Charles site could bring. I am confident that there is a great desire to redevelop our parish campus, and therefore have requested that Bishop Burbidge approve further redevelopment efforts. I remain,
Your servant in Christ Jesus,
Fr. Don Planty
February 14, 2018
As previously announced, Bishop Burbidge has approved the beginning of discussions about a potential redevelopment of our parish site. A redevelopment would respond to several challenges: the need for facilities which better support our parish mission now and in the future; the projected growth in the Rosslyn-Ballston Corridor; and, our aging parish infrastructure which limits our parish apostolate, which has high maintenance costs, and which is not energy efficient.
Bishop Burbidge and I agreed on the need for thorough consultations with all parish and diocesan stakeholders with an interest in the prospective project, and we have had fruitful meetings with:
- Parish Focus Groups, including groups comprising our parish Pastoral and Finance Councils, and our Parish Staff;
- Our Parish Redevelopment Committee;
- Our parish preschool staff and families;
- Leaders of various diocesan offices.
We will now host two Parish Redevelopment “Town Hall” Meetings to solicit even more feedback from parishioners–especially those who have not attended any previous consultation meetings. I invite you to join us for one of the two meetings, either on Tuesday, February 20 at 7:00PM, or on Thursday, March 1, at 7:00 P.M., both in the gym.
The Town Hall Meetings will be an opportunity for us to hear your thoughts about the possibilities a redevelopment could represent for our parish, especially reflecting on the following questions:
- How could a redevelopment better serve our parish’s three-fold mission?
- The prophetic mission to proclaim the Good News of the Gospel through preaching and teaching, offering comprehensive formation in the faith
- The priestly mission to celebrate the sacred liturgy and the sacraments, and to guide the faithful in prayer
- The shepherding mission to live by leading and uniting others in loving service
- Consider our present situation: How does our current parish infrastructure support or limit our apostolates, our activities, which correspond to our mission?
Consider what will be, and what could be, in the future: How will demographic and other societal trends affect our parish’s mission, and what are the needs and possibilities for our future mission and apostolates? What infrastructure would best respond to those future needs and possibilities?
- Essentially, the fundamental question is this: If our parish had an empty city block–if we could start from scratch–what structures would you envision that would best support our mission?
While Bishop Burbidge and I and many parishioners are excited about the possibilities for the future, please note that there are no redevelopment plans, there is no redevelopment timetable, there are no preconceived ideas of what might happen: we are simply in the dreaming, imagining, and listening phase, brainstorming and discussing the many possibilities with all those having a stake in the potential project…
Our Town Hall Meetings will be a chance for you to share your ideas: we look forward to your feedback! I remain,
Your servant in Christ Jesus,
Fr. Don Planty
THE LATEST NEWS
Rev. Donald J. Planty, Jr., Pastor
Rev. Richard J. Dyer, Parochial Vicar