A Message from the Pastor…………………….
150th PARISH ANNIVERSARY Now I can reflect a little more with you on this wonderful kickoff. Last week the event was so fresh and fulfilling, I couldn’t put much into words. The event actually began with Archbishop Carlson arriving a half hour early! Fortunately I was ready. We had time to sit and discuss the parish, and bits of each of our lives. He looks so vigorous, but actually, with knee problems, he’s having some difficulty moving around much.
Then we got a ride to the funeral home, so he could make an entrance (thanks to Ortmann Stipanivich for the ride!) and it was a fun way to do it. As the big SUV came in, people were lined up with pompoms and cheering him in. Starting in the cemetery felt right, because it was a beautiful day, it’s been a part of the parish from the start, and the honored dead and parish forbears are there. Music was led by the choir in robes, and included African music for Monica and Augustine’s African roots. We blessed the new field, still under development. There was a great procession around front into the church, and Mass proceeded with continued excellent music by children and adult choirs.
In his homily, the Archbishop reflected of course on Monica’s patience in prayer, but also her compassion, forgiveness, and changing her mind when called for—the Scriptures of Colossians and Sirach especially. He called it “spiritual martyrdom” to await the awakening of her son and her husband. Then we all enjoyed the great light dinner refreshments in the hall.
Last week’s reflection in the bulletin on the night was written by Felix Ferrise and Val Siemer, who have chaired the Anniversary events for over two years. They gave a list of people to thank, but this week I’m pleased to express thanks from all of us to Felix and Val, for keeping this light burning all this time, and their time and planning.
Over the last 2 weeks, besides this I’ve had two funerals and two weddings (Savitha Narendra and Scott Ellis, Jessie Theby and Uri Valkov) as parish life goes on. Each week brings 2 or 3 more inquiries about a baptism and school. Of course along with our regular Sunday liturgies, which I cherish.
Thanks to all for the Anniversary Kickoff and all the parish life.
On this, our 151st year, the parish is as vibrant as ever, and far more diverse in its tasks and practices. We have many coming to us for membership, school, Baptism, and more. It’s an exciting time to be a member of St. Monica Parish.
So we’re finally here, after at least two years of planning and discussion. Let’s be proud; let’s be amazed. And let’s be grateful to all who have built this parish’s life. And above all, let’s be grateful to God for his faithfulness and love for this parish and for us.
Rev. Thomas W. Wyrsch