Father John’s Message

Fr. John Gerritts  |   

25 September 2022

If you have been a long-time reader of my bulletin columns, one topic you may remember I have written about in the past is about being busy. For some reason people tend to have this belief that priests are always busy. Frequently I hear people say things like “I am sorry to call, I know how busy you are” or “I would have called but I know you are so busy.” I try to not add to this perception. In fact, hearing the schedules many of you have, I believe you are way busier than I.

But I also wonder if it is something cultural or generational. I often think of the women of my mother’s generation. I never recall any of the women of that generation in particular talking about being busy, yet I believe they were incredibly busy. Some of them worked outside the home. They supported their family members, cared for us when we were sick, did the shopping, the cleaning, the cooking, the sewing, and always had time to sit and listen to our problems or help with school work. I also remember my parents invited our parish priest over for dinner.

I have been over to many people’s homes, but I also hear “we would love to have you over for dinner, but we know how busy you are”. I want to make it easy for you if you have ever had this thought. I am going to put up a calendar on the window by the offices with evenings when I am free if you have ever wanted to have a priest over for dinner but were worried he was too busy.

I have debated for some time about doing this. I don’t want to come across as if I am looking for a free meal or a handout. If no one signs up, don’t feel that I will starve. I just want to connect with more of you outside of church. I want to get to know you better, enjoy your friendship, hear your family stories, and learn from you if there is something I could be doing better as I serve as your pastor.

I hope the dinner visits would be casual and not a burden. We can talk as much about church and religion as you would like or we can talk fishing and biking or whatever your interest is. I am about the easiest person in the world to cook for. I have no food allergies and eat anything (but I don’t drink coffee – yuck!). A few years ago, a family invited me to dinner and asked what I would like. I told them to please prepare something their kids would enjoy, so we had peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and watermelon. We ate in a park and had a wonderful time together. I don’t expect anything fancy, but prefer if you have kids that we have what they like. So if you are interested, check out my calendar on the window by the parish offices.

Finally, thanks to everyone who helped make the Holy Smoke Barbecue Festival a success. Especially thanks to the grill masters and kids who made delectable desserts and prepared some incredible food. If you were not at church for the sampling, you missed some culinary delights. It is hard to think that we won’t have the festival for another 360 days. Maybe I can get one of chefs to invite me for dinner!

Would you like the Church bulletin delivered right to your email inbox?

Click on the “Subscribe” button.

Type in your email and name.
Click “Subscribe” and never miss out on any parish news.

When our weekly bulletin posts to LPI, it will be delivered right to your email inbox, typically on Thursdays.