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.

Advent Days: Prepare the Way of the Lord

Dear St. Luke’s Parishioners,

Last weekend, I was wearing the “Rose” vestments that indicate the middle point of the Advent Season. It is a time to rejoice that indeed, the Lord is near. Rose is a color of joy and excitement for the Lord who is coming to be with us.

I encourage you to consider celebrating the Sacrament of Reconciliation, as usual, I will be available for confessions 9 - 10:00 am on Saturdays and a special time on Monday December 21, 6:30 - 8:00 pm. Plan on taking advantage of this peace giving sacrament as you prepare for the Lord’s coming.

Two weeks ago, on 12/6, after our Advent Penance Service, the Stewardship Committee held its regular meeting. Then I attended a Christmas Chili Supper followed by helping with the Christ the King Advent Penance Service. That made for a pretty busy day.

Monday, 12/7 was a good day for getting the Christmas Wreath hung, cleaning some windows, and even a little Christmas Shopping.

Tuesday, 12/8 was the celebration of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It was great to celebrate at the 8:30 am mass led by our St. Luke’s students. That evening, the 6:30 pm mass held a focus on the Jubilee Year of Mercy beginning throughout the Church and in our parish. Following the mass, the RCIA session was held with its focus on Sacraments in general.

Wednesday, 12/9 after the morning mass, I went to help with confessions at St. Francis. At noon, our panel met for our regular Tribunal session at the Catholic Pastoral Center. I will be interested to see how this work may change in character in the near future. That evening, the RE classes were in session. Advent projects to help those in need are being selected and carried out by each class.

Thursday, 12/10 I visited with the 2nd Grade at St. Luke’s School. We talked about Advent. I shared some stories about Elisha the prophet from the Old Testament. That evening after mass and adoration, there were no meetings! Parish Pastoral Council was not meeting in December. That meant that I had no excuses for not going to my basement and beginning my stained glass project that I have to have done by 12/26! Well, there was the Iowa State/Iowa basketball game to watch with its dramatic finish! Then I did get a very good start on my project.

Friday, 12/11 was a pretty calm day, just writing this letter to get to the printers early. Of course, there was a trip to Sam’s Club for school lunch supplies.

We had three more baptisms last weekend. Welcome to our newest members at St. Luke’s. If you have not already done so, I ask you to be generous to our 2nd collection for the Retired Religious Fund. Many Religious Orders of Sisters never planned for care for their aged members and this fund goes a long way to help care for those who gave their lives in service.

These Advent days are meant to be times of prayer and reflection. But there is so much going on! I have just turned off the radio when I am driving - great time to reflect and pray - right in the middle of the rush of these days. Take time to prepare the way for the Lord to come into your heart this week.

Fr. Larry Hoffmann