St. Pius the X Two by Two Outreach Summary
by Mike Ceciliani, St. Pius X, Conyers, GA
The Two by Two outreach developed at St. Pius X through parallel paths. One group developed the Two by Two concept with the intent of visiting new parishioners. Another group was looking to reach out to the inactive parishioners who were still registered but not active. We decided to use the Two by Two umbrella organization to serve both groups.
We defined the group of “inactive” parishioners as “still registered but not participating in any “Time, Talent or Treasure” campaigns for at least two years. We understood this did not automatically label them as being inactive but it was the best place to start. As it turns out, this list was pretty accurate since most of the response from the visiting pairs indicated the families fit this profile. Stewardship Consultants who helps St. Pius with their stewardship and communication efforts helped put the list of families together. We are a parish of 1,800 families and we determined we had about 1,000 families in the inactive category.
To gather support for the ministry, we announced the campaign at all masses and signed up volunteers. These volunteers participated in a training day facilitated by Father Frank DeSiano. We had over 50 volunteers during the training session. At the end of the training session, we had groups pair off into two’s for the following Saturday visits. Each pair received a list of 5-7 families for visitation. This list included names and addresses so the visiting pair could map their route with a week to spare.
The visitation day started with an 8:30 am Mass. Father John our parish pastor said a blessing over the entire group prior to send off. There were a number of volunteers who did not want to make home visits but came and offered up prayers in the sanctuary during our visits. We had a total of 13 teams of two who visited about 65 families on that Saturday. Visitations were from 10:00am till around 1:00pm.
We put together packets as a “leave behind” when we actually met with families. These packets included activities at the Church, Bulletins, Life Teen information etc. We also prepared a small post card for visits where no one was at home. The post card had a short message about missing them and would welcome them back to St. Pius. The visiting team left their names and contact #’s on both literature pieces. The feedback from the group was overwhelmingly positive. The pairs will make further outreach to their visiting families based on their perceived need of follow up.
Our intention is to have a social follow up event giving volunteers the opportunity to share their stores and review ways to improve the process. For our next outreach day, we plan on pairing new volunteers with experienced volunteers as an informal “on the job” training. This could give us an opportunity to double our teams for the next visitation day.