Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I’m thankful for your cards and good wishes and the parish’s gift to me as I departed from the Catholic Community of St. Francis after 19 years of being a partner in ministry with you. My heart overflows with gratitude. I’ve gotten unpacked and settled at the St. Bernadine of Siena Friary and helped to welcome the class of 2018 at Siena College this past week. And now I’m thrilled to be in Assisi with many parishioners for the parish’s Franciscan Italy pilgrimage.

The week before departing Fr. Steve and I were privileged to be able on behalf of all the friars of Holy Name Province to present the Francis Medal to several parishioners who through their generosity of spirit, service, and support, continually give witness to the values and ideals of St. Francis of Assisi.

Julio De La Rosa

Julio retired from St. Francis of Assisi in 2005 after serving as the parish’s first business manager for more than 10 years. For each of the friar pastors who have served St. Francis, Julio has been a trusted advisor. Holy Name Province has also benefitted from his wisdom when ministries have been in need of financial guidance and advice. In addition to serving the parish’s finance council for more than two decades, he has been a retreat leader for the pastoral staff sharing the depths of his Benedictine spirituality. Most recently Julio has served as Acting Director of Finance and Planning from April through August.

Jim & Judy Barton

Jim and Judy are founding members of the Catholic Community of St. Francis of Assisi. They have volunteered faithfully in various capacities over the 30 years of the parish’s life. Jim has served in fulfilling the corporal works of mercy as a columbarium attendant, visiting the sick, feeding the hungry and clothing the naked through his work at Catholic Parish Outreach. Judy has been a partner with him also serving in many leadership roles including the pastoral council and building committees. Together, as a couple, they have been great witnesses of married love within the St. Francis Community. As generous stewards of their time, talent, and treasure they have helped us live out our mission “inspired by our patron Francis, we   seek to proclaim the reign of God.”

Richard & Carol Derrenbacher

Rich and Carol have been long time members of the parish. Rich has been a friend to each of the friars and provided great leadership within the parish wherever needed. Rich also serves Holy Name Province on the advisory council for development and shares his business background by managing Franciscan pilgrimages for two of our Franciscan parishes. Carol has been a steadfast volunteer sharing her gifts and talents mostly quietly behind the scenes as a caregiver through her natural pastoral care and wellness instincts. A teacher by profession, she teaches in our safe environment   program, but mostly teaches by the witness of her life, as Francis would say preaching the gospel always, using words only when necessary.

Congratulations to each of these partners in ministry.

Peace and all good,

Fr. Mark

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