September 7-9 was an “all-hands on deck” weekend that showcased the generosity of our parishioners and staff in serving God’s people. Even the many unchurched people who came here for the wedding, funeral, and baptisms.
It was a “perfect storm.” A huge number of people came for the funeral, and a pretty large number for the baptisms as well. We even had a little impromptu anointing of the sick service, and I had two Masses on Friday outside of this parish.
The one sacrament that we did not do was an ordination, but Fr. Ron did go to the 50th jubilee Mass for his longtime friend Sr. Kathleen Matz in Pittsburgh. In one sense, it turned out to be a less than ideal weekend for one of us priests to be away, but this only served to highlight the generosity of Fr. Ron. One mark of a generous person is his/her circle of friends, and Fr. Ron has a huge one. He called upon four of his priest friends to help us last weekend, and we needed every one of them.
I want to name several people who helped in all sorts of ways last weekend, beginning with the parish staff: Matt K was here virtually the entire weekend, and Matt H was here all day Sunday at least; Debbie, Helen, Kathy, Edward, Paolo, and others of our parish staff did a lot of extra work, especially with the funeral; Amy provided music at Masses here and at Austin HS; Edward and John of the maintenance staff also have been very busy lately. Parish volunteers included Dennis, Chris, Charlie, Joanne, and their crew, who put together a funeral lunch for a huge crowd; Gerri, one of wedding coordinators, had to train me for my first Isidore wedding; and Ron Verellen, who manned the Knights of Columbus table for much of the weekend.
I just named a lot of people, and there are surely just as many of you whom I did not name—I am grateful to you every bit as much, especially those volunteers in many capacities who work week in and week out, some of you day in and day out. (Such as those of you who minister at weekend Masses and weekday Masses, our catechists, and even those of you who bring food to the rectory for Fr. Ron and me!) And I am still leaving out lots of folks. Many thanks to all of you! We have good reason to be proud!