March Madness

If you have a keen eye, you may notice some cosmetic changes around and about my web site. Additionally, there are some things under the hood that are pretty geeky, so I won't bother you with the details other than to say that I've tried simplifying the menu system on the top of the screen. Since I now have some seven podcasts, I realized that it was becoming too clumsy to have a button for each one. So, now there is just one with a pop-down menu listing all the projects. I've done a similar thing with the other buttons. So, please be patient if things seem a bit messy in the next several weeks. Think of it as March Madness here at Fr. Bill's Personal Pages.

Italian Joy!

Our annual Italian Dinner is now in the history books. I always love this event because so many people gather to serve and have a great time. This year is especially poignant as it is part of a trio of milestones: the 50th anniversary of the construction of the church, the 100th anniversary of the founding of our parish community, and the twenty-fifth anniversary of our Italian Dinner. This year’s chairperson for the dinner, curiously enough, was the one who lead the charge twenty-five years ago at our very first dinner and whose mother’s recipe was used for the meatballs: Ray Giansante. Thank you Ray! You did a marvelous job. Your cheer and laugh were infectious!

Ray, however, was not alone. He was supported by an army of volunteers. Many have been helping since the beginning. Some came out to help for the first time. Some have been helping out each year quietly without any need of thanks or recognition. To all who volunteered from preparation, to cooking, to serving, to clean-up, to money handling... thank you very much!

At risk of missing someone, I would like to offer special thanks to Ray’s team of leaders who selflessly gave of their time and talent:

Co-Chair – Camille Miller, Publicity & Promotion – Becky Pettit, Volunteer Coordination – Claudia Yakos, Ticket Coordinator– Debbie Kincaid, Wine Procurement & Sales – Laurie Kemper and Becky Pettit, Desert Production – Linda Wardenburg, Kitchen – Judy Hendricks & Diane Kemper, Meatball makers – Jerry & Lois Boogaard, Meatball Cookers – Steve Lepschat, Linguine Cookers – Ray Chapman, Take out – Patty Schmitz, Trevor Thursome, & the Camille Miller Family, Bazaar – Theresa Carter, Dinning Room Set Up and Coordination – Donita Miller, Mike VanDyke, Clean up – Alan VanDyke & a multitude of parishioners specifically from our Hispanic Prayer Group, Dishwashing – Todd Schmidt, his family and friends, Transportation of Food – Jeff Pettit & Brian Rouse, Money Handlers/Counters – Ann Olinger, Outside Cookers of Sauce and Linguine – Matt O’Dell & Pete VanDyke, Donation of Freezers and Refrigerators – Pete VanDyke. Thank you all! Thank you for your joy-filled service!

There is also someone special who I want to recognize who has been involved for many years, a person who worked the entire day, a person who worked with a particular smile and kind word for anyone passing his way, a person who isn’t a leader of any of these groupings, yet demonstrated the heart and soul of our parish during the dinner. That person is Dwight Herb. Dwight scraped and cleaned dishes all day long. His extraordinary yet humble work was done without complaint and was a model for us all. Thanks Dwight! Job well done!

Finally, thank you all who came to eat! The food was wonderful and so was the company. I think all who dawned our doors were met with a warm smile and a plate of hot food. Thank you all! It was a wonderful event!

The Pilgrim Cast

Since our return from our pilgrimage to the Holy Land, many of us can finally say that we have recovered from jet lag and have begun to remember all the things we experienced. While I was in Israel, I took my digital recorder and captured over 150 clips to be edited together at a later time. Well, the first official episode had been comleted and I am proud to say that the Pilgrim Cast is under way. If you were not able to to gog for what ever reason or you were one of those pilgrims who forgot most of what was said (which includes me), then check out and listen to some of our adventures. Most of the recordings are of our guide, Khader Msacobi, a.k.a. George, as he takes us to all the holy sites. Also are some sound-seeing tours by me and interviews as we traveled. I've submitted the podcast to Apple which will be making it available for free via iTunes. In the meantime, you can also go to to the Pilgrim Cast web site or subscribe directly to the feed. I hope that you will find the podcast informative as well as inspirational.

Sincerely in Christ,

Fr. William Holtzinger