As I mentioned in my previous column, Lent is a perfect time to say, "I'm sorry," both to God, whom we have offended, and to our brothers and sisters whom we have offended also.
And so I explained that my Lenten resolution this year is to say, "I'm sorry" more often. I want to issue a number of apologies, therefore, to anyone whom I may have inadvertently offended in the course of exercising my ministry.
One of the rules my staff and I try to observe is the "24-hour rule" -- This means that when someone contacts us at Priests for Life, whether by mail, email, phone, fax, or on social media, we are to respond to them within 24 hours. Even if we don't have the answer to their question, a simple acknowledgment is in order.
The reason for this is simple: people matter to us. You matter to us.
When we broadcast, or send out mailings, or travel to various communities to present the pro-life message, it is because we want to equip, energize, and activate the public on behalf of the unborn. And this means that the public will engage us with followup questions. It means that when people's consciences are awakened to the abortion issue, they will ask us what they can do about the issue. And it also means that some people will donate to us -- and generously -- and so that donation deserves an immediate and grateful acknowledgment.
We do a pretty good job of responding, but I honestly lose sleep at night over the times that we have not responded in a timely fashion. Perhaps we just got behind in the work, or perhaps messages just slipped through the cracks.
That bothers me, because when people are left hanging, it gives the impression that we don't care about their question, or do not value their input or their donation. And nothing could be further from the truth.
Let me take this opportunity, therefore, to sincerely apologize to anyone who wanted or expected a response from me or my staff but did not get one, or got it late. You deserve better than that, and I renew my commitment to make sure you receive better than that in the future.
One thing I can assure you is that any such circumstance has been inadvertent, because we never deliberately ignore anyone who sincerely comes to us with a question or a desire to help our work. We value and treasure each and every one! God bless you, and please pray for us, that we will always serve you better and better!
Part One: My Lenten Resolution This Year: To Say "I'm Sorry" More Often