Dear St. Luke’s Parishioners,
I think we are finally getting the summer that we did not have. Hot, humid and hazy in the mornings describes things pretty well. All the grass is thriving as well as the weeds. No break from mowing this summer.
On Monday, August 18, I joined Bishop Pates and other pastors in celebrating Mass for the teachers serving our Catholic Schools at St. Pius X church. The teachers in the diocese are undertaking a program from the Kansas City diocese that will help focus Catholic Identity for each school. Eventually, St. Luke’s School faculty will take part in this program as well. That evening, the Knights of Columbus held their regular meeting. I joined the Shelby County priests for dinner and cards. It is a great way to keep in touch and to enjoy an evening together.
Tuesday, August 19, I joined area Catholic pastors for lunch at Talley’s in Beaverdale. It is good to see what local priests are doing in their parishes.
Wednesday evening, August 20, the Liturgical Furnishings sub-committee met. We reviewed the drawings that were sent to us from Iowa Prison Industries for our altar, ambo, altar chairs, baptismal font and tabernacle shelf. We will give the OK to proceed as soon as we get the last drawing back from them. We selected two stains for the pews and the furnishings - burnt mahogany for the pews and classic walnut for the furnishings - it is a little lighter. We also looked at samples and pictures of granite. Soon those furnishings will begin to be constructed.
Several pews at a time will be picked up to be spliced and refinished hopefully beginning August 26.
I had the privilege of taking Fr. Bob Kem from St. Anne’s to lunch on Thursday. It is good to hear of St. Anne’s parish life and progress. Thursday evening after Mass and adoration, the Finance Council met for its regular meeting. Dick Johnson gave a thorough report of the construction of St. Luke’s facilities and the costs involved, payments being made and the progress of construction. The council reviewed the Pro-Forma budget they had made for the cost of our construction, the payments, the loan and the payments. They projected this out for a good number of years. We anticipate steady growth in membership for St. Luke’s and financial support to meet the payments needed. This was Brian Mulcahy’s last meeting as head and member of our Finance Council. Thank you, Brian, for your leadership and good work these last several years.
Friday afternoon, I went in search of a large bowl that we could use for our baptismal font. We will have the base and the granite top but we need a round bowl at least 24 inches across. Many plumbing supply companies make “vessel’ sinks but they are usually about 16 inches. We will keep searching.
On the weekend, my homily ended with a focus on Stewardship. The four pillars of Stewardship are: Hospitality, Prayer, Formation and Service. When we reflect, we realize that we are so blessed by our good God. We have received the very life of God in Baptism and in Eucharist. All we have, the opportunities we enjoy, are gifts of God. Stewardship is how we respond to God who is so good to us. We are to use well all we have been given and to give back a portion to God.
I mentioned that we can all give back to God in Hospitality. We can make it a point to be the one who takes the 1st step in meeting and getting to know someone at St. Luke’s. We can come to be known as a parish as a people who reach out and welcome those who come to be with us. May we all grow in our efforts to be a hospitable people.
Fr. Larry Hoffmann