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.

Uplifting Moments: Retreats, The Ascension, Ordination

Dear St. Luke’s Parishioners,

The Memorial Day weekend was good. Friday evening and Saturday were beautiful. Sunday morning gave us a little rain but then the sun came back. Now as I write the letter, a storm is working its way from south west Iowa.

Last Monday, May 19, the Knights of Columbus had their regular meeting at 7:00 pm. After that meeting, I joined a group of OLIH parishioners who met with the AMOS (A Mid-Iowa Organizing Strategy) organizer Paul Turner. They were discussing how AMOS could help local parishioners address finding ways to work for justice. We see that we are very good at finding ways to help with charity but it is more difficult to address ways to remedy the need for that charity in the first place. 

Tuesday morning, we held the Construction/Architect’s meeting at the Construction trailer at St. Luke’s building site. We reviewed the progress made so far - footings being poured for the bulk of the facilities, the work on the storm sewers and plans for the regular sewers as well as water connections. Details about the 100% drawings from the Architect continue to be reviewed. We anticipate that pre-cast walls will begin to be erected in the week of June 2nd.

On Wednesday, I was present for the Ankeny Ministerial Association meeting at the Ankeny Presbyterian Church. Recent activities from the various churches were reviewed. Plans for the coming meetings were made. That evening, I met with Nathan and Alison Meier for a baptism preparation class. They were busy with the birth of their daughter Elsie when the last class was being held.

Thursday evening after the 5:30 pm Mass, the Social Concerns Team held their regular meeting. We studied the 6th chapter of the book “The Four Signs Of a Dynamic Catholic.” It presents a great challenge to help members of the parish to grow in their faith and the need to reach out to others with that faith. In the meeting, we reviewed previous plans for support of St. Joseph’s Family Shelter. 1st Friday meals and those providing the food were also updated. Catholic Charities has encouraged the whole parish to support their efforts with the Catholic Charities Nite at the Cubs on June 5. Several suggestions for the “Tithe of the Tithe” were also made including support of Habitat for Humanity.

Friday noon, I meet for the monthly Marriage Tribunal at the Catholic Pastoral Center. That afternoon after reading emails, the regular mail and feeling like doing something different, I put gas in the lawn mower and cut the lawn. I think it had the last drop of gas as I finished. I even got to meet another of my back yard neighbors talking about his work and meeting a couple of his six children. The rectory is part of a great neighborhood.

Sunday morning at the 9:00 am Mass, I had the great joy of baptizing Elsie Catherine Meier, daughter of Nathan and Alison. They had a large family delegation join in the celebration. After Mass, I had the opportunity to host Dani Schon and Hannah Goetz, two High School graduates from St. Luke’s, and their families at the Noodle Zoo for brunch. The young ladies are looking forward to their college careers after work this summer. Then I attended a couple more graduation parties.

I would ask that you keep the priests of the diocese in your prayers during their annual Diocesan Priests’ Retreat Sunday June 1 - June 5th. At the same time, keep Luis Mejia and Andrew Windschitl in your prayers as they approach ordination as transitional deacons Friday, June 6th, at St. Ambrose.

Fr. Larry Hoffmann