It seems that Fr. Vesely & I have been running into a lot of parishioners lately when we're out to eat, trying to keep body & soul together. We saw Stan & Rose Kosiba who were celebrating their 55th wedding anniversary, and in the same place we saw Ralph & Tannie Cosiano who were celebrating their 58th anniversary. So congratulations to them and to anyone else celebrating a wedding anniversary, especially at this time of year. We also ran into Bob & Rose Zarko who celebrated 50 years earlier this year in January (congrats to them too!) but they were just out to dinner with their grandson...still a good reason to enjoy a meal at one of the many restaurants in the area.
A classmate of mine from the Doctor of Ministry program I was in a couple of years ago asked me if we had a minister to tend to those who are very ill, such as those people who are under the care of Hospice, either at home or at a Hospice facility. While we do have people in Hospice, unfortunately we do not have someone who has been able to minister to their spiritual needs during that difficult transitional time of their life. My classmate's name is Robin Imbrigiotta and she felt the call to professional ministry after being a volunteer in her own parish of Our Lady Help of Christians (in Litchfield) for 10 years. Robin as been in active ministry for 17 years as a hospital and hospice chaplain, Certified Pastoral Minister and Spiritual Director, and now as the Director of Pastoral Care at Mount Alverna Village (where Fr. Vesely knows her as he celebrates Mass there every Tuesday morning). The ministry she misses most in her nursing home work is the pastoral home visits she used to make. She enjoys being able to bring the ministry of the Church to those unable to join us here for Mass. So if Robin gives you a call & asks if you'd like a visit, please know that I have given her your name in the hope that she may help me and the parish to minister to you in your illness. She will let me know when you feel the need for me to bring you the sacraments or to just visit & pray with you myself. This is one small way we can continue to reach out to those most in need in our parish. Please let me know if you would enjoy a visit from Robin and we can make those arrangements. Her time allows her to make 2-3 visits a week. As the recipient of the Doctor of Ministry degree, and due to much experience in this ministry especially, I can testify to her qualifications and am glad she can minister to those in our parish.