By Msgr. Jamie Gigantiello, diocesan vicar for development
Father Chris Piasta has been pastor at St. Joseph’s Church in Jamaica, for just over two years, and worked as administrator in the church for four years prior to that.
“The community itself,” is what he loves most about it. He says, “It’s the fact that people are really presenting themselves with an attitude that is very warm and welcoming. Most of the parishes in East Queens are much smaller than others, which makes us a very close-knit community. That is extremely rewarding.”
With an initial Generations of Faith campaign goal of $120,000, St. Joseph’s Church went above and beyond the call of duty to raise $170,045 from only 102 gifts!
St. Joseph’s hopes to begin renovating and investing in its community center and church and also enhance the children’s ministry programs with the funds raised.
About working on the Generations of Faith campaign, Father Piasta said: “It is gratifying because of the people themselves and who they are, regardless of what we are doing. They are simply great people and they have invested a lot in the parish and community and they see the sense of that.”
With an incredibly diverse community coming to St. Joseph’s from 50 different countries including African, Caribbean and Polish communities, Father Piasta’s volunteer committee was able to assist with the campaign effort by tapping into several groups within the parish based on their origin, language and personal connections. He called these volunteers his “influentials.”
For those parishes beginning their Generations of Faith journey, Father Piasta encourages that they “make a good plan for the parish when it comes to money and what (specifically) you want to spend it on” within your parish.