Dear St. Luke’s Parishioners,
I have an idea that Iowa farmers are out in their fields preparing the soil and planting like crazy in these beautiful days. God has blessed all those who are working outside these early spring days.
Last Monday 4/11, I attended the funeral for Msgr. Jerry Stessman at Holy Trinity in Des Moines. His large family was in attendance along with many, many priests and deacons and many former parishioners. It was a wonderful celebration of his faith and the life God intends for him in eternity. That evening I was way ahead of things, picking up my completed taxes a full week before they were due!
Tuesday 4/12, I met with a couple who are completing their marriage preparation. We filled out the church papers and planned the ceremony. They are meeting to plan the music for their wedding as well. Later that evening, the St. Luke’s School Board had a special meeting to do further work on the budget. Discussion was held about the possibility of having two sections of Kindergarten next year with 25 already registered and 12 on the waiting list. A letter concerning that possibility was sent to Bishop Pates and he has decided that St. Luke’s can have two kindergarten classes next school year.
Wednesday and Thursday, I went to Kansas City, Missouri for the funeral of my 1st cousin, Helen Perry. I had the delight of meeting with her three daughters to complete their plans for the funeral. It was great to be able to celebrate the funeral mass with them and to share lots of old family memories.
I returned on Thursday evening in time for the Parish Pastoral Council. We enjoyed discussing the 11th Chapter of “Forming Intentional Disciples,” our study book for this last year. We all were challenged to see how we can become intentional disciples ourselves and how we can invite others to draw close to Jesus as well. A good discussion of the results of the April 2 Visioning Retreat for leaders and committee members of St. Luke’s followed. We recognize the need we have to draw many of our newly registered families into the ministries, committees and activities of our parish. More discussion of the priorities identified at the Visioning Day will be held next month.
Friday was a nice quiet day to catch up. St. Luke’s School was not in session. I had no meetings! I could read my back email and begin preparing for the weekend.
Saturday and Sunday we enjoyed Sr. Cecilianne Le, a Dominican Sister from the Dominicans of Mary Immaculate in Huston, Texas. She told us about her orders work with the poor in Vietnam and their work with Vietnamese in Texas. Keep her mission and work in your prayers.
By now many of you have received my second letter concerning our “INCREASED OFFERTORY APPEAL.” I urge you to fill out the envelope that came with the letter and join those who have helped increase our financial support of St. Luke’s. God has been so generous in all of our lives. Let us respond to his love by sharing a portion of what He has given to us. Please return your envelope this week.
Congratulations to our Class that Bishop Pates is confirming today at the 9:00 am mass. May the Holy Spirit fill them with joy and courage in living their faith. Keep our 1st Communion class in your prayers as they prepare to celebrate on Sunday May 1st.
Fr. Larry Hoffmann