The late Rev. James Field took advantage of every opportunity to catechize his parish. One of his most effective tools was the parish bulletin. Many bulletins are deadly dull, and few parishioners actually read them. But Fr. Jim transformed his parish bulletin into a highly effective communication piece that parishioners would stop by during the week to pick up if they missed Mass on Sunday.
I had a pre-defined marker of success: I would begin to see our bulletin in places other than the parish grounds. Soon, I was noticing it on refrigerator doors around the parish; once I saw one on the Starbucks bulletin board downtown; a business man said he always posted it on the office bulletin board. Other markers of success emerged before I had a chance to define them. People started coming to the office door on Mondays asking for the bulletin since they had been out of town over the weekend. When I spied a lady sneaking three bulletins into her purse one Sunday she sheepishly gave me an excuse that has become a motto for us: “I’m sorry, Father, we need one in every bathroom.” Luckily, I understood her to mean for literary purposes only, unlike the Sears Catalog of old.
Read how he did it in his article, “The Parish Bulletin: A Faith-Formation Resource.”