School Supply Drive
The new school year is fast approaching. Whether you’re ready or not, back to school shopping is right around the corner. For many area families the required school supply list just doesn’t fit in an already tight family budget. As an example, 80% of the students at one of our local schools receive free or reduced lunch. School administrators have asked our parish to provide supplies for over 250 children. When shopping for your own family, please consider picking up some extra items for these children in need. Take your kids! What a great opportunity for kids to see your faith in action.
School supply lists will be passed out at Masses on July 15th and 16th. We will also accept any cash donations for needed supplies after each Mass on July 15th and 16th. Please return the school supplies on July 22-23, July 29-30, or August 5-6. We will have a “sorting event” on Monday, August 7th at 6 pm. This is a terrific time for families to volunteer. We will also need volunteers to deliver the school supplies to area schools. There will be a sign up sheet in the gathering space on July 15th and 16th. For more information contact Cindy Zach at email@example.com
Thank you for your generosity!
The Community Outreach School Supply Drive Committee
Food Pantry Drive
Pick up bags: June 17/18
Return bags: June 24/25
St. Boniface parishioners, who volunteer at the food pantry, are organizing a food drive coming up! (June 17/18) All food donations will go directly to the Christian Food Pantry, of which St. Boniface is a sponsor. After Mass, volunteers will be handing out grocery bags with lists attached to them. If you are able to help, please take a bag and fill it with some of the listed items. You can give as much or as little as you are able. Please return your bags to church on June 24/25. Thank you for your kindness! For more info, contact Gina Becke. The most-wanted items for the Food Pantry: baby food, size 4 & up diapers, jelly/jam, pizza mix/sauce, 100% fruit juice.
Communion Minister Training
Saturday, June 24, 3:30 p.m.
We will have one more Eucharistic ministry training this fall. If you missed the opportunity to attend one of the previous dates or you held back but now feel God’s call to serve in this special way, please join us! Questions, contact Catherine Witte at firstname.lastname@example.org
St. Boniface receives grant
We are excited to announce that St. Boniface was recently awarded a $999 grant from the Catholic Foundation of Southwest Iowa to be used to purchase an IPad Plus Pro which will be used for music ministry. The Catholic Foundation of Southwest Iowa works with families to facilitate giving and in particular, planned gifts to benefit organizations within the Diocese of Des Moines. The return on investments made within the Foundation comes back in many different ways to diocesan organizations and their grant program is one of those ways. For more information, go to www.catholicfoundationiowa.org.
The use of the IPad Plus Pro will enable our Scott Fitzgerald, our Music Minister, to provide musical accompaniment at all services that require music in the parish – including Masses, weddings, and funerals. All sheet music is now available in digital format (pdf files). The Apple IPad has software available to it to make this happen that other platforms do not support. Currently, music needs to be pulled from and returned to large binders that houses the paper music. This leads to undue wear and tear on the printed pages, with some pages eventually damaged or even lost. Lost items need to be replaced, driving up costs. The iPad would eliminate this. Once scanned, documents are forever fresh and clean.
Hospitality (Coffee and Donuts) volunteers needed
Here’s an easy but fulfilling way to give back to the parish – help with Hospitality weekends. You’re at Mass anyway and probably have shared some donuts and socializing over the years on these weekends. Maybe it’s time to put yourself on the other side of the table and pour some juice or coffee for others. It’s a great way to make people happy and see new faces. And it doesn’t take much time at all – just one hour every other month or so. You just need to help at the Mass you usually attend. Volunteer by yourself, with some friends or make it a family ministry (your Confirmation kids or high schoolers will even get service hour credits). If interested, contact Patrick or Yvette Burton at email@example.com or call or text 515-419-3475. Thank you!
A note from Fr. Vince
The Catholic Church in the United States is showing its concerns for the deep cuts that are proposed in the new budget areas that provide food and other programs that assist the poor. There is a national organization called Bread for the World. They and the bishops are inviting us to commit ourselves to prayer and beginning a fast. It is on May 21 that many of these cuts will begin and 90% of funds will run out. We want to be in solidarity with families who will have less access to food for their children. The fast is encouraged on the 21st of each month until changes can be adopted.
I realize that there is an expectation of all citizens to seek employment that would help support their families. But there are hundreds of thousands of families who hold a job that does not generate enough income to support their family, and therefore may cut the necessary food for them and their children. This monthly fast is a good way for you to be involved in an exercise you can participate at home. It raises the awareness of these issues of poverty. You are also encouraged to contact our senators and representatives to support some of these funds for children being restored. It is easy to ignore these important issues because we often don’t observe many of them in our parish. But discussions with our local school districts have shown that there are a significant number of children who need supplemental food, not only through the school lunch program and other government programs. Hopefully political differences do not get in the way in supporting these very important ways to reach out to those most vulnerable.
Traffic flow after Masses request
To facilitate a smoother exit from our parking lot after Mass we are asking all parishioners to review this traffic flow map. By following the directions, yellow arrows for those who park in the North Parking lot and red arrows for those who park in the South Parking lot, we will be able to reduce the amount of time it takes to exit in half. We appreciate everyone’s help in this matter!
New Community Outreach Co-Chairs Take the Helm
Sisters Katy Hildman and Kelly Grimm have graciously agreed to be the new Community Outreach Co-Chairs replacing Kelly Steer and Cathy Peters who have done an admirable job overseeing the operations for the past three years. Katy and Kelly will oversee the Salvation Army casserole drive, Heartwarming Collection, Winter Coat Collection, School Supply Drive, and Community Blood Drive. If you’ve ever participated in these activities, you’ve played a key role in assisting the St. Boniface mission to promote community building to foster our growth in faith. And, with two new leaders, we look forward to the continued success of these valuable community services.
About Katy: My husband Quinn & I have been members of St. Boniface since 2006. We have 2 children (Kyla 5, Kobe 3) whom you’ve probably heard during mass at some point! St. Boniface has been such a good/welcoming friend to me over the years and has inspired me to get more actively involved. I love meeting enthusiastic members of this parish and figure the Community Outreach program is a perfect place to build upon this. You won’t want me cooking any casseroles, but I’m solid at donating blood. Thank you for having me!
About Kelly: Two years ago my husband, Nolan, and I moved back from Minneapolis and immediately started attending St. Boniface. We have two girls, Rossi (2) and our most recent addition, Sage, born just a few weeks ago in April. St. Boniface does a great job of making new members feel welcomed and I have been searching for a way to get involved and give back to the Catholic Church that has done so much for me over the years. I am excited to be the link between the church and community, and look forward to getting to know more parishioners and helping others. I am also looking forward to sharing this experience with my sister and growing as a member of the church and my faith.
Ushers and Greeters Needed
Ted Hawkins, Pastoral Council Chairperson, spoke at all Masses this past weekend about the need to make room in our pews for the many new families that have joined this past year and will be joining in the next few years. If you have questions, please feel free to contact Ted via email. Here are the main points from his talk:
- We have seen a net increase of 100 new families per year – which works out to about 350 new parishioners. We want all members of our community to experience a sense of welcoming and hospitality – whether that is a friendly “Hello” at the door or help finding a seat.
- The current pool of volunteer ushers / greeters isn’t large enough to adequately handle these near-capacity crowds. The option of adding another weekend Mass really is not a viable option as there are no other priests who can assist us with one additional Mass a weekend. Most of the weekends during the spring through fall, Fr. Vince has a wedding on Saturday and usually three baptisms each weekend; he is not able to add another Mass on Sunday mornings.
- To make room for growth, we are asking all of you to consider helping by volunteering to be a greeter or usher. By adding another 50 greeters and 50 ushers to the volunteer list, we can certainly provide a welcoming atmosphere and help others in our parish find a place to sit. Since you are already coming to Mass, this doesn’t add any extra time to your already-busy schedules. (See information below about volunteering to be a greeter or usher.)
Lastly, Father has talked about a number of ways everyone can help; let’s make these a regular habit when attending:
- Please try to arrive early. As Father has said, the priest should be the last one to enter the sanctuary.
- Please fill seats from the front to the back. I promise this isn’t like being in class – if you sit at the front, Father won’t call on you to answer a question.
- And finally, please fill in the space in the pews to ensure there is enough space for all. If you’re at the end of a row, consider sliding in to allow others to fill in more efficiently. This is especially helpful for families with young children who may need to make a quick exit in the event of a meltdown or other parishioners who are volunteering .
This is your congregation, let’s make it a good one. No, wait. Someone recently said being good is not good enough—let’s make it a great one!
Your parish needs your support! Please consider volunteering to be an usher or a greeter (or both!). If we get enough volunteers, you can plan to be scheduled just once a month and maybe less frequently depending on how many people volunteer. We welcome individuals, couples and entire families to train for either position.
Funeral Luncheon Volunteers Needed
With the generous donations from loved ones’ families to defray the cost of food and with donations of salads and desert from parishioners, volunteers serve funeral luncheons and give families a time to share memories. If you would like to be involved with this ministry, contact Barb Arkwright at firstname.lastname@example.org