And good bye. This is my last weekend as pastor at St. Joseph’s and I would like to thank all of you for the past six years that I have spent with you. As a priest I am blessed to be able to celebrate so many major events with you of both sad times, like funerals, and joyful times like weddings, baptisms, First Communions, and Confirmations. And then there are all the occasions in between these major ones that we were able to experience and live our lives together.
When I was coming here I expected other people to comment about the noon Mass we have each weekday, but was happily surprised to hear that more people commented about the 11:00 Confessions every weekday. The parish is seen for these sacraments by many as being in the business area where people are during the day, and we have tried to serve them in this way and in other manners to help them live and grow in their faith, but we are also a local parish.
Families young and old make up our parish, some that just recently moved here, and others who have been here for generations. The active PSR that not only supports our children but also those of neighboring parishes. The St. Vincent de Paul Society that is not only a means to serve the poor but a way in which many of our community grow in their faith and in this community. I was happy to be able to celebrate the 175th anniversary of the parish with you while I was here, and hearing of the many personal histories of people with the parish and the school and trying to make some chronological sense as you recollected the history of the parish.
But now I am packing up to move. As those who have been here a long time have seen other pastors come and go I know my six years have been a relatively short time, but I am very grateful for them. I hope I was able to help many of you grow in your relationship with Christ, and with one another here as the body of Christ, as you have for me. Thank you for this and all of our experiences together and I ask that you keep me in your prayers as I will keep you in mine.