Friday, December 05, 2008

a blizzard of activity...and an invitation

Sorry, dear readers, for being scarce. The demands of being a pastor are great, especially these days.

The financial storm that has struck everywhere has, of course, struck in Miami County as well; and collections are down. Saint Boniface has had deficits for several years, and Saint Mary had many deficits for several years before having one up year when I first got here. Now both parishes face serious deficits, and I've been having lots of meetings discussing options, none good. It has not been easy or enjoyable, and I have learned from some mistakes along the way.

Meanwhile, the boiler in Saint Mary Church chose to die in November, and we have been getting by with minimal heat as the temperature dropped. I've been having a lot of discussions on that, and God willing, we'll settle on a recommendation next week. We had a temporary heater set up in the basement, which will, if it works, keep us in the 60s until the boiler is replaced.

Meanwhile, we are approaching--this weekend--a monumental celebration for our venerable Father Angelo Caserta, who had his 90th birthday today, and who will be a priest 64 years in February. Tomorrow evening, he will be celebrant for 4 pm Mass, followed by a carry-in dinner for all and sundry, at the Caserta Center in Piqua, next to St. Boniface Church. We expect at least 500 to show up, and the sky's the limit on how many will want to greet and give their love to Father Ang.

Sunday, we will have a "Roast & Toast" in honor of Father Ang, at the Fort Piqua Plaza, 116 W. High Street, in downtown Piqua, 6-9 pm, as a fundraiser for the critical needs of Saint Boniface Church and the school: we expect to have 200 present (tickets still available at the door, $100), and the proceeds will enable us to restore at least several of the century-old stained glass windows in church.

Oh, and then I have all the other usual projects, and tasks of a pastor!

If you have no plans, please come to Piqua this weekend, especially for the Roast & Toast--it'll support a good cause!

6 comments:

Fr. D said...

Fr. Martin,

I'm a pastor in Nebraska. Facing deficits as well but not as serious as yours sound. I'd be interested to talk to you sometime about the options you're discussing. I assume you operate a school. My email is frdandrews@gmail.com.

Peace.

Fr. Dan Andrews

Anonymous said...

It will be fun to hear about the events of this weekend!
Annie

Fr. Larry Gearhart said...

Fr. Martin,

People need to know that the "g" in Ang is a soft "g," as it is in Angelo.

Please convey my birthday greetings to Fr. Ang.

Fr. Larry

Pat Caserta said...

Father Angelo: I see you are celebrating some special anniversaries. From one Caserta to another, I hope you enjoy your special days and have many more in the future. - Patrick Caserta, Kinnelon, NJ

Kasia said...

Wish I could come to Piqua, but am afraid it's not feasible this weekend. My best to Fr. Ang, and I will look at the budget to see if I can squeak out a donation to your boiler fund...

Anonymous said...

Speaking of your "usual projects", one in particular, the
get-together with pastors of other local churches (mentioned in your bulletins), is one of the best ideas. Christianity is under such
vehement attack from without that it will only be by banding together with fellow Christians that we can strengthen. Yes, there are some ecclesiastical differences between Catholics and Protestants but now is the time to latch onto our similarities and forego the hairsplitting. We are all Christians - let us stop being denominational enemies and work together to overcome the negative forces seeking to destroy Christianity wherever it's found.
We need the strength of numbers at this time.

You are making strides in that direction. Three cheers!
Annie