Dear St. Luke’s Parishioners,
It was pretty typical Iowa today. It was cloudy but not raining as we gathered for the Parish Picnic at Big Creek. Right as we were sitting down to eat under the big and nice shelter, a shower came and then a little later yet another shower. Now as I am writing the letter, the sun is out.
It was a great Parish Picnic. The little colored church ice breakers got us to visit with different people to find the pieces to the puzzles. With lots of picnic tables and the showers, folks sat down, moved around and visited each other. Nice place. Nice gathering. Nice picnic. Let’s do it again next year!
On Monday, June 16, I joined other priests, seminarians and young men considering the priesthood for a day of Best Ball golf at Blank golf course. I enjoyed the day, with each team member having a very good day - we got second place! That evening, I had a Mass with the Knights of Columbus as they installed their officers for the coming year.
Tuesday noon, I met with my support group for lunch. At 2:00 pm, I was part of the architect/contractor’s meeting to review sub-contractor bids. Later that afternoon, I met with the Liz Park family to plan her funeral at OLIH while Fr. Steve is on vacation.
Wednesday afternoon, I was part of a team to interview another candidate for the seminary. Keep him and all young men discerning their call in your prayers. That evening the Building Committee met with representatives from all of the committees. We are getting very close to having the Furnishing and Finishes budget in hand for the parish part of our 1st Phase.
On Thursday evening, the St. Luke’s Finance Council held its regular meeting. We reviewed the Building Committee progress and the sub-contractor bids that still need to be reduced in cost. We looked at a draft of a St. Luke’s Parish Employee handbook. We reviewed and revised a draft of the St. Luke’s parish budget. We approved the purchase of a laptop computer with software for our St. Luke’s School principal.
Friday morning, I met with Matt Halbach and Faye Akers from the St. Joseph’s Education Center to talk about ways that center could help St. Luke’s. They can help with our parish council, with the faith formation council and our baptism preparation leaders. I look forward to their input. That evening, went out to St. Francis Rectory in Council Bluffs to enjoy an evening dinner and cards with the Shelby County priests.
By the time you read this letter, Fr. Reynaldo Hernandez will have already talked to us about his home diocese in El Salvador. His Diocese is Zacatecoluca. It is one of four in that country. He is speaking as part of the Missionary Cooperative within the diocese where different individuals speak at our Masses seeking our support for a need outside our country. Fr. Reynaldo hopes to support the efforts to train catechists and priests, to help with the Seminary for that country and to help with the renovation of their Cathedral.
Our help will be greatly appreciated. Next week we will have the Peter’s Pence Second Collection to help support the missionary work that Pope Francis does throughout the world. May our generosity enable him to touch the lives of many. Be blessed as we enter into these summer days.
Fr. Larry Hoffman