Fr. Britto's Blog

2020 Annual Report

The people of Israel were wise because the Lord was their God. As long as they followed and obeyed Him, they held on to their wisdom. This God taught them many wonderful lessons. He asked them to rest on the Sabbath and He wanted them to declare a jubilee year once every 50 years. As we read in the Book of Leviticus (25:10-11), God says:

And you shall hallow the fiftieth year and you shall proclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you: you shall return, every one of you, to your property and every one of you to your family.

The word, “jubilee” is derived from the Hebrew word “yobel” which means “ram” because the jubilee year was declared by a blast from an instrument made from the horn of a ram. There is also another meaning taken from its Indo-European roots. It means “a shout of joy.” Indeed jubilee is a shout of joy because the year is especially dedicated to the Lord.

Eight years ago, I said that the year 2012 was a jubilee year because we had just celebrated our centennial. We had many reasons to rejoice and to give thanks. I consider 2020 – with all its unprecedented challenges – to be a jubilee year. Perhaps we are not ready to rejoice but we do have reasons to give thanks. Personally I want to give thanks because I am coming up on an important crossroads in my life. At the end of June 2021, I will step down as the pastor of this great parish. Looking back, I realize that I have numerous reasons to give thanks to God, the Giver of all gifts. I hope you will join me in thanking God for our many blessings. Let me list just the most significant ones:

We have a vibrant parish community that is alive with thousands of families, children and young people, engaged with their Faith and active in various ministries and activities.

We are part of a Catholic community that is proud of its traditions and wants to be faithful to the Universal Church and her Magisterium.

Our Catholic school, with an enrollment of 620 for Fiscal Year 2021 (ending June 30, 2021), nurtures Catholic identity and maintains academic excellence. St Paul has won the Blue Ribbon Award for the second time.

Even in the midst of this pandemic, our religious education program currently hands on the faith to over 900 students, while it offers various options.

We are fiscally sound, have no outstanding debts, and ended Fiscal Year 2020 in the black.

Our buildings are in great shape and we stand in the enviable position of being able to carry out needed repairs and maintenance on our facilities.

Through the goodness of our parishioners, from time to time we receive unsolicited gifts that enable us to undertake projects that will enhance our campus.

We have a team of dedicated men and women who are committed to make disciples and pass on the Faith to our parishioners, young and old.

Once again, we present our financial report in this bulletin at the end of November. You will notice that we ended Fiscal Year 2020 (ending June 30, 2020) with a surplus, in spite of our parish being shut down from March to June. Our healthy year ending was possible because of a couple of reasons. First of all, our finances were robust until the pandemic knocked us down. The gains made in the earlier period helped neutralize the losses due to 3.5 months of shutdown. Secondly, a few large donations from our generous parishioners helped us avoid ending the year in the red. However, the forecast for the coming year (Fiscal Year 2021) does not look very bright. With less Masses and restricted attendance at each Mass, our Fiscal Year 2021 average offertory has gone down 28% per weekend.

As we are approaching Christmas, I do hope and pray that all of us will dig deep and help us to close the shortfall that seems inevitable. Perhaps the year-end donations will be larger. Our parishioners will hopefully step forward with larger Christmas gifts to the parish. I am also encouraging many more of you to sign up for online giving on our GiveCentral site here.

I have absolutely no doubt that our parish will continue to be vibrant. If there is one thing I have learnt over the last eleven years and a half, it is this. St Paul of the Cross is blessed with amazing parishioners who consider their parish to be their own. Their faith is strong and their commitment deep. It has been a privilege for me to serve all of you.

I pray for each and every one of you in my daily prayers. May the God of mercy deliver us from this period of anxiety and uncertainty! May God bless us all!


Click here to read our 2020 Annual Report.

Who is Fr. Britto?

Born in India to deeply-committed Catholic parents, Fr Britto is one of seven children. He joined the Salesians of Don Bosco as a young man and was ordained a priest in 1981.

After he completed his priestly formation and his early education in India, he came to the US for his graduate degree in Journalism at...Read more...

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St. Paul of the Cross

320 South Washington Street
Park Ridge, IL 60068

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Phone: (847) 825-7605
Fax: (847) 825-5186

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Monday - Friday

8:30 am - Upper Church


4:30 pm (vigil) - Upper Church


7:30 am - Upper Church

9:00 am - Holy Family Chapel

10:30 am - Upper Church

12:00 pm - Gym