The discipline of service is to make continuous efforts, week by week, to bring others nearer to Christ through His Church.
Service is the Brotherhood rule that enables brothers to put their faith into action by helping others in need. Service is also a key part in maintaining an active Brotherhood chapter. Helping others brings a sense of spiritual satisfaction to members by being obedient to Our Lord’s commands.
Chapter leadership, along with creativity, and input from all brothers, is required in selecting service projects for the Chapter.
There are several criteria to be considered in selecting service projects:
- Select an ongoing “Flagship Project” that will serve those in real need which will be interesting enough to attract participation by other men in the church, whether they become Brotherhood members or not. The Brotherhood Chapter will become known throughout the church for the ministry through its “Flagship Project”. A good example of an ongoing project for the Dallas Assembly of the Brotherhood is the annual build of a Habitat House by brothers from several churches in the Diocese of Dallas, assisted by men who are not Brotherhood members. In the Fall of 2011, the Dallas Assembly of the Brotherhood will be completing it’s 16th house in partnership with Dallas Area Habitat for Humanity and a deserving low-income family that will be purchasing the home, after having put in 400 hours of “sweat equity” for their down payment.
- Select projects that have a spiritual benefit to others, hopefully outside of the immediate congregation.
- Plan service projects that involve boys, such as the Boy Scouts, or boys within the congregation. This might be visits to the local VA Hospital thanking veterans for their service, a parish dinner honoring youth of the church who have made special contributions, or a joint outing involving sports. The new All Saints Camp at Texoma can be a valuable resource for joint activities with youth.
- Refrain from a being a “catch all organization”, that finds itself responding to all kinds of requests, many mundane, from various organizations within the church once they learn of a men’s ministry being formed. Have a policy of being limited to meaningful projects that bring spiritual value added by helping others in need. Once the service projects are selected by the Chapter, it is up to the Chapter Director, and other Chapter officers to coordinate the scheduling and assignment of members, so that the projects are successfully completed.
- The Chapter Director should make sure that the Chapter does not assume responsibility for more service projects than the Chapter can handle. Too many demands on men’s time, especially on mundane projects, can cause attrition of chapter members.