September 3-4, 2016


I recently bought a new car (preowned). My former car was a 2009 and this car is a 2014. You would never know because it is the same make and model. I had to bring it to the dealership recently and decided I would walk around for an hour instead of sitting inside and reading. I took myself to Patriot Place for my walk. I couldn't help but realize that Gillette Stadium and its surroundings is its own little world. I would call it a small Kingdom. This excursion took place in early August, so Patriots Training Camp was in session. There were thousands of people of all ages making their way to the Practice—very excited and animated. The Patriots also have set up a type of amusement center where children can participate in running out for a pass, or kicking a field goal. There were long lines. There were many other booths and opportunities in which families could participate. As I walked around I realized that the intent (conscious or unconscious) is to cater to the young knowing that they will guarantee the Patriots' future. The marketing of the NFL has got to reach out to future generations, otherwise the NFL is history. I believe they have already achieved that goal with women. They made a concerted effort not that long ago (symbolized by the pink Patriots apparel) and it was hugely successful. 

As I looked around at all the shops and new hotels I began to think, the Pats have to welcome people from all over the country and give them a positive experience not only at the game itself, but also in the surrounding area (movies, restaurants, merchandise, shopping and hospitality). 

The Patriots are not only competing against the opposing team, they are also competing with the franchise. As I looked around at all the activity, and the construction, I began to imagine the amount of money being spent by the team, by the NFL, and by the fans. It was beyond my capability. I have to admit that I got a little depressed as I began to acquaint myself with what I saw and what that indicates for priorities. 

Many of us don't think twice when we spend money for entertainment, and that is a choice we all make. 

I wish our Church was able to take advantage of advertising and marketing the same way, because we obviously are having a difficult time making ourselves attractive to younger generations. It seems to be all about passion. Pats fans are passionate. That passion is contagious. 

The Catholic Church has had a difficult time asking for financial assistance and yet we know how necessary that support is, to assure our future. 

This is all going through my head as we prepare to spend millions of dollars on our 3 Catholic facilities. The Pats spend hundreds of millions and don't even bat an eyelash (I haven't used that expression in years!) 

Enjoy Life! 
Fr Coyne


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