A Note From Father Eickhoff

October 2, 2022

Almost all of the activities of St. Anne Parish are made possible by parishioners volunteering their time. Think of all the volunteers who serve as catechists and aides in our Religious Education classes or the parishioners who assist in various liturgical ministries as singers, Lectors, and Eucharistic Ministers.  St. Anne Parish would be greatly diminished without volunteers.  And so, I want to take this moment to thank everyone in the parish who volunteers their time and effort to help make St. Anne Parish a vibrant church.

I wanted to write the preceding words before coming to the main topic of my bulletin article today.

Most of the parishioners of St. Anne Parish who volunteer in various ministries – especially those ministries such as Religious Education that involve working with children – are required to undergo some form of background check and education concerning child sexual abuse (as defined in the Protecting God’s Children charter) in order to volunteer in these ministries.  The Diocese of Joliet (and yes, St. Anne Parish is a part of the Diocese of Joliet and the directions from the diocese on this matter are directives and not suggestions) is cracking down throughout the entire diocese on employees and volunteers who have not completed all the elements of the Protecting God’s Children requirements.  The diocese has issued an ultimatum that all employees and volunteers must be in compliance with the requirements that are needed for their particular ministry by October 13 of this year.  Please note that the exact requirements for each person vary based on whether someone is an employee or a volunteer and in what ministries that person serves in.  Employees and volunteers who are not in compliance with the Protecting God’s Children requirements by October 13 will have three (3) days from the date he or she is informed of their non-compliance to fulfill the requirements.  If, at the end of that three-day time period, an employee or volunteer is still not in compliance that person will be prohibited from working or volunteering at St. Anne Parish – or any other parish in the Diocese of Joliet – until they have fulfilled all of the necessary requirements.

If there is some part of the Protecting God’s Children requirements that you know you have not yet completed, I urge you to finish them as soon as possible.  If an employee or volunteer is missing some part of the requirements, they will be informed by email as to what they are missing and how to fulfill the requirements.  If you receive such an email, please make the time to complete the requirements you have missed so that you can remain a volunteer at St. Anne Parish.  Please note that many volunteers will have completed all the requirements when they first started to volunteer, but over time new requirements may have been added or other requirements may need to be redone.  So, if you receive an email stating that you need to complete some requirement it does not mean that you didn’t do them in the first place.

Yours in Christ,

Fr. Stephen Eickhoff