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.

Pews, Parties and Campaigns

Dear St. Luke’s Parishioners,

As I write this letter right after Mass on June 30 and before vacation, there are promises of a very mild, sunny and wonderful week for the July 4th celebrations and for travel time. God is good!

Last Monday, June 24, I traveled to New Hampton with Jim Roths and Dick and Kathy Johnson. We went up to Jim’s home parish, St. Mary’s. That church will be closing this coming November and we went up to take a look at their pews as well as some of their stained glass windows. If they would decide to sell them and we would decide to buy them, they would make a very reasonable set of pews and kneelers for our dedicated Worship Space come November of 2014.

On Tuesday, the “Together We Build” advanced gifts volunteers took names of area parishioners who had expressed interest in helping us with our capital campaign. They will be visiting them in the coming week or so. Thanks to the members of OLIH, All Saints and St. Mary’s in Elkhart for their interest in St. Luke’s.

That evening, the Social Concerns team met for their monthly meeting. Friday, August 9th is St. Luke’s day to work at Habitat for Humanity. We need a crew of 8 or so to commit to working that day. I have already agreed to help that day. If you would like to help, let Jenifer know at the parish office. We are working with the “Ankeny Apostles Build”, a joint effort of churches in Ankeny to build several units for Habitat for Humanity.

Wednesday, June 26, the Strategic Planning Team met with our architect and contractor. We reviewed the presentation that will be made to the City of Ankeny for zoning change to allow Independent Senior Housing on St. Luke’s site. We discussed the contract for our contractor. The diocesan lawyers are reviewing that document before approval. The architect presented two footprints for Phase I with the respective square footages. Several more suggestions to refine the space were made. There is real excitement as we get closer to what and where different things will be.

On Thursday, I was part of the interviewing team for another young man considering going to the Seminary. It is great to help talk with them about their background and to see how their call from the Lord leads them to this point in their vocation discernment. Thursday evening, Scott Schoaf, who has been our Capital Campaign director, presented the final report for the campaign from our parishioners. 153 gifts and commitments have been made for $1,564,000+. He also recognized and thanked the leadership, the volunteers, the parishioners who made all this possible. Then we had a great pot luck to celebrate.

On Friday and Saturday, I began my scramble to get things finished so that I could leave on Sunday for vacation, June 30 - June 12. I will be going home to Panama to be with my siblings as we gather from all over for the celebration of my Mother’s 100th Birthday. I am not sure what we will be doing aside from the July 6th 2-4 pm open house, 5:00 pm Mass and 6:00 pm dinner. I suspect we can come up with some things to do in the mean times.

It is with gratitude in my heart, that I take time off. I truly appreciate all those who worked together to make this part of our “Together We Build” capital campaign a success. I am grateful to all who volunteer at St. Luke’s for so many things. Each doing what they can builds the community of faith and helps us appreciate God’s gifts that we can share.

Have a blessed week.

Fr. Larry Hoffmann