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.

Manicured Grass, Firecrackers and Building Adjustments

Dear St. Luke’s Parishioners,

I look out my east office window/wall and see that the St. Luke’s campus has been mowed and trimmed. It really looks great. Thanks to the Harpenau and Stillmunkes families who spent the best part of Friday getting it to look so presentable. God has blessed us with a good crop of new grass to go with the thriving trees and shrubs.

Sunday 6/28 and Monday 6/29 I was part of the funeral for Ray Sackett from St. Theresa’s. That Monday evening, I joined a number of Shelby County priests in our periodic card game at the Dowling Priests’ residence. After dinner, they came up to tour St. Luke’s campus. It is great to show off a little!

Tuesday 6/30, we had our first Staff meeting in our new facilities. We talked about scheduling, how to decide which meeting spaces could be open for use as well as what responsibilities would fall under different staff area. We will try to have staff meetings on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday mornings. That evening, the Building Committee had its final meeting followed by a celebration - wine and cheese. Several of the Sub Committees still have things to conclude before we are all finished, but we are close to completion.

Wednesday morning, I welcomed more than a dozen St. Theresa’s parishioners to the 7:45 am mass. They came up to celebrate and to get a tour which I was happy to provide. Tonya Eaton, our principal joined us for the school tour. Then we went to Hy-Vee for coffee and a bagel. That evening, Tim Voss, the representative from Walsh Associates who conducted our Capital Campaign, met with our lead Capital Campaign Couples to help plan our annual follow up to the “Together We Build” Campaign. Since the campaign, nearly 100 new families have joined St. Luke’s. We want to give everyone an opportunity to be part of our campaign with their financial support. More information in late July - early August.

On Thursday 7/2, I attended the 1:00 pm Regional Priests Meeting at St. Theresa’s. An effort is being made to see that all the various care facilities have a parish being responsible for the resident’s pastoral needs. St. Luke’s covers Vintage Hills and the Polk City Care Center. After the 5:30 pm mass, the Liturgical Furnishings Sub Committee had its meeting. We reviewed the progress made in getting things ready for the Blessing on 6/20. We discussed the things still to be finished - the large crucifix, the statues of Joseph and Mary and the decoration of the Reconciliation Room. Still later, the Liturgy Committee had its regular meeting. We reviewed the Liturgical Ministries and the adjustments we were making for our new facilities. We also spoke of plans we will need to make for “The Year of Mercy” that will begin with the 1st Sunday of Advent.

On Friday 7/3 after the 7:45 am mass, I also had 9:15 am 1st Friday Mass at Vintage Hills. Since no one was at the office, I prepared for the weekend liturgies. That afternoon, I rode my bicycle for longer than my body felt good about!

Saturday after the 9:00 am Reconciliation, I spent the early afternoon with a south side family in their annual family July 4th gathering. After mass, I joined another group for their July 4th croquet tournament and dinner. What fun!

We continue to give thanks to God for the gift of freedom that we celebrated on Independence Weekend. May we be responsible as citizens in using our freedom well.

On another note, if you are interested in being part of our RCIA team, please contact me. St. Luke’s will start that process this fall. We are looking for candidates as well.

Fr. Larry Hoffmann