Celebrating the Gift of God’s Love

Archdiocesan Synod 2023

Archdiocesan Synod

In gratitude for the Archdiocese Synod of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Archbishop Hebda, has officially implemented a 3-year outline for all parishes to commit to.

Year 1 - Small Groups (July 2023 - June 2024)
Year 2 - The Mass (July 2024 - June 2025)
Year 3 - Parents as Primary Educators (July 2025 - June 2026)


In the fall of 2022, Father John created a Synod Evangelization Team (SET) for the parish and they are:

  • Jaci Bush
  • Nicole Fisch
  • Julie Moore
  • Deacon Rich Moore
  • Kim Roering
  • John Scanlon
  • Mary Weyandt

This team attended 7 weeks of training last winter and are now focused on how to implement small groups here at St. Pascal Baylon Church.

Many of you might have questions, so we have identified some FAQs below.

If you have any other questions or concerns, please contact: Jaci Bush, Kim Roering, or John Scanlon.


Small Groups - Year 1/St. Pascal Baylon Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Note:  These FAQs have been prepared by members of the Synod Evangelization Team (SET) at St. Pascal Baylon for the use and benefit of parish members and other interested persons as we continue our Synod journey and move forward to implement the Synod Priority of Small Groups for Year 1 (July 2023 – June 2024) in the parish.  The FAQs are based on information currently available to us and are current as of the revision date noted below.  FAQs may be adjusted and new FAQs added as new or updated information becomes available.

Question: Why are Small Group leaders and Small Group members being asked to complete a survey?

Answer:  The parish Synod Evangelization Team (SET), as mentioned in January when parishioners were being invited to join a Small Group, wants to review the initial Small Group experience at St. Pascal’s this Lent and assess how Small Groups will continue and in what form.  The surveys are a means for the SET to follow up with Small Group leaders and members for feedback about their Small Group experience as part of this review and assessment.  

Question: What will the survey be like?

Answer:  The survey will be brief (~8 questions).  There will be one survey for Small Group leaders, which will be provided during the Week 5 meetings, and another survey for Small Group members, which will be provided during the Week 6 meetings.  Both surveys, which vary only slightly from each other, will consist of Yes/No questions, questions asking you to respond using a rating scale (e.g., 1-6), and at least one open-ended question to which you can provide your written thoughts (if you wish).  The surveys can be completed in minutes and should be turned in at the end of the meeting at which you receive the survey, along with a “Beyond Lent 2024” form that leaders and members will also receive at the meeting.

Question: If I am a Small Group leader or member, what if I have additional thoughts, observations, or suggestions about my Small Group experience that I would like to share and that may not be covered adequately in my survey responses?

Answer:  If you have additional thoughts, observations, or suggestions that you would like to share about your Small Group experience, especially those that are constructive and can help improve the experience moving forward, that is wonderful.  You are welcome to contact Kim Roering in the parish office, Jaci Bush, or John Scanlon to share your additional input with any one of them.  

Question: So, what are the next steps for Small Groups at St. Pascal’s?

Answer:  The first step is to collect and review the responses to the Small Group leader and member surveys as well as any other input received.  Depending on the survey responses and input received, we (the SET) are also considering the step of extending our current Small Group sessions for an additional session during the seven-week period between Easter (March 31) and Pentecost (May 19) 2024.  Remember, the hope all along in launching Small Groups at St. Pascal’s this Lent, and the wish of Archbishop Hebda in making Small Groups the first Synod Priority to be implemented at the parish level, was that Small Groups would continue after Lent and into the future for every parish and parishioner. 

Question: What would this additional session of Small Groups during Easter involve?

Answer:  We would target this next session of Small Groups to begin during the week of April 8.  Small Groups would not meet every week during this period, as was done during Lent.  Rather, we hope Small Groups would have three or four meetings during this period (e.g., every other week), but it would be up to each Small Group to decide the number and frequency of meetings they would like to have.  For this additional session, the content of the meetings would again be the same for every group.  The parish would provide the teaching and related discussion questions which would focus on readings from the Acts of the Apostles which are part of virtually every daily Mass during this Easter season.  The parish would also continue to provide a meeting room on-site for each Small Group if desired.     

Question: Are current Small Group leaders and members expected to continue in this proposed additional session between Easter and Pentecost (or, for that matter, any other future Small Group offering)?  

Answer:  No.  Your commitment for this initial experience of Small Groups at St. Pascal’s was for Lent 2024.  We hope, however, that your experience of Small Groups has been positive and that it has helped you grow in intimacy with the Lord and in love of one another and feel even more a part of the faith-filled community that is St. Pascal’s.  You are invited, but certainly not required, to continue your Small Group experience in the proposed additional session.  

Question: If I want to continue with a Small Group in the proposed additional session, will the existing Small Groups continue with their current members?  Do I have to stay in the same Small Group?  May I move to a different Small Group?   

Answer:  Existing Small Groups are encouraged to continue with their current members and leader, but only if they wish.  Current members who would like to continue, but would prefer to move to a different Small Group, might be able to do so, depending on the survey responses and other input received, including the number of Small Group leaders and members who indicate they wish to continue in the proposed additional session.  Adjustments may have to be made to the leaders of Small Groups and the composition of some groups depending on survey responses and input received. 

Question: Will new members (i.e., adult parishioners who did not participate in a Small Group during Lent) be able to join a Small Group for the proposed additional session?

Answer:  Possibly.  Our ability to add new Small Group members will depend on the number of Small Group leaders and members who decide to continue.  Working with the current leaders who went through formation and training last Fall, we want to continue to have Small Groups of 6-10 members in the proposed additional session.  So, new members might be added on an “as space available” basis.  Announcements will be made to the parish if we are able to invite and add new members to Small Groups in the proposed additional session.  

Question: If we move forward with the proposed additional session of Small Groups between Easter and Pentecost, what will happen to Small Groups at the end of this session?

Answer:  At the end of this additional session at Pentecost, the SET will once again review the Small Group experience at St. Pascal’s, including following up with Small Group leaders and members for their feedback, and assess where we go from here with Small Groups.  Among other things, we would be looking at the interest of other parishioners in joining a Small Group, improvements we can make to the Small Group experience, our ability to develop and form new leaders for new groups, content options for future groups, and when we might be able to launch a round of new Small Groups (e.g., possibly next Fall).  With that said, existing Small Groups are welcome and encouraged to continue their experience if they wish and will not need to wait for direction from the parish to do so.  Continuing Small Groups may be free to choose their own content (subject to the approval of the pastor) and decide when and how often they wish to meet.  We will look for ways to support any Small Group that wishes to continue after Pentecost and such support may include providing content options and suggestions if desired, offering supplemental training for existing leaders to take advantage of the learnings and experience from our Small Groups during Lent and Easter, making meeting rooms available on-site, etc.


Read more FAQs here:

St. Pascal Baylon Small Group FAQs


Read more about the Archdiocesan Synod