Father Larry's Letters

"Father Larry's Letters" are a weekly letter/journal about the many events occurring within and around the St. Luke's community.

Ashes, Alms, Antiphons and Appeals

Dear St. Luke’s Parishioners,

As I write this letter, I am looking once again at about 3 inches or so of heavy wet snow that came to us on Thursday evening, February 23. It is a reminder that it is still winter! But spring is drawing closer every day. Last Monday, I enjoyed the “Wise and Wonderful” supper at OLIH. It is fun to gather and share food and memories. On Tuesday, I met with a couple planning their wedding and went to the Emmaus House for Spiritual Direction. That evening, it was great to join the members of St. Anne’s Episcopal Church for their Mardi Gras Pancake Supper—good cakes! It is good to join with our host to celebrate things like this.

On Ash Wednesday, we greeted about 65 folks for the 7:45 am Mass and about 165 folks for the evening celebration. I am impressed once again that so many people receive the ashes and are determined to begin the season of Lent, the time we need to change and draw close to the Lord.

Thursday, late morning, I met with a team that had interviewed a candidate for the seminary. It is great to be part of the process of helping men of our diocese discern the call of the Lord. That afternoon, I was part of the St. Joseph’s Education Center Search committee, as we began the process of seeking a new director for the center. We will miss Dr. Tom Neal who has led us there in the last 4 years. That evening, the Parish Pastoral Council met and completed their Charter Document for the formation of this council.

From that same council meeting, we decided to invite St. Luke’s parishioners to help the St. Vincent de Paul Store resupply their shoes and new socks. During the season of Lent, go through your “gently used” shoes and buy some new socks, all sizes, and bring them no later than March 25th. It can be a simple, local Alms giving effort for us.

A good prayer time will be St. Luke’s Lenten Retreat on March 10, 1 - 4:00 pm at St. Anne’s. Amy Hoover will lead us in looking at “Transformation” in our lives. You can register after Mass today.

On Sunday, February 26, we had the Rite of Sending for our five candidates for full communion in the Catholic Church. Later that afternoon, they celebrated the Rite of Election with Bishop Pates at St. Ambrose Cathedral.

I ask you to keep Fr. Steve Orr’s brother in law in your prayers. He suffered a serious heart attack on late afternoon, Saturday, February 25. That family and Fr. Steve would appreciate your prayers. Also, keep our country in your prayers as we struggle to insure freedom of religion and freedom of conscience. Contact your legislators and encourage them to pass legislation that insures these freedoms.

The diocese has given St. Luke’s an opportunity to increase our building fund by not giving us an Annual Diocesan Appeal goal. All given to this appeal will come back to St. Luke’s. Please be generous.

Have a blessed Lenten Season.

Fr. Larry Hoffmann