Happy 100th anniversary! On June 29 we mark a milestone in the life of our parish, and we celebrate in a special way with our festive gathering after our 9:30 am Mass. Thank you to Archbishop John Vlazny and Msgr. Dennis O’Donovan (pastor from 1982-’89) for joining us and celebrating Mass with us. Archbishop Vlazny has frequently commented that he has been rather busy celebrating centennials this year, demonstrating that our fourth Archbishop, Alexander Christie, must have been a very busy man 100 years ago. Along with St. Anthony’s, St. Francis in Roy will also celebrates this year as their centennial. We can thank Fr. F.J. Kettenhofen, the former pastor of Visitation Church in Verboort for purchasing the original land for our parish.
Our Centennial celebration doesn’t come without planning. As such, I want to thank Lani Vandehey, Virginia Ohler, Tweena Casey, Judith Knutson, Diego Patron, Joy Hills, Eileen Dolan, Diana Wuertz, Mark Vanderzanden, Ed & Floralee Stadelman, Mike Hinton, Anna Ronek, Linda Wardenburg, Mike Galati, Lisa Storms, Jesus Cornejo, Sr. Juana Gutierrez, and Tia Kouba for all the planning they have done. It is certainly a large-scale celebration. Thank you all! You are examples of what makes St. Anthony’s such a wonderful faith community.
St. Anthony's Today and in the Future
Thanks to the hard work of many volunteers, most particularly by Vera DeWolf (click here to download the pdf file of her original history from 1908-1990), our parish history has been preserved. In fact, most information is now online. For example, go to the St. Anthony's Historical Photos Page to see a collection of images we've gathered from parishioners and abroad.
Today, I hope that along with all the great food and entertainment, you also set aside a time to offer your own personal prayer for the ongoing needs that we, as a parish, have as well as the needs of the wider community that we are called to address. So many things have changed in 100 years. Gosh! So many things have changed in the past decade. It makes me wonder what St. Anthony’s will be like and what needs we will have 100 years from now. God willing, I pray that we will still be as vibrant then as we are now. I pray that our children’s children will find St. Anthony’s to be a welcoming place of worship, fellowship, and fun. When I arrived, Fr. Elwin Schwab (my predecessor) told me that there was a real possibility that we would outgrow our present church building during my tenure and that we would need to build a new church where the baseball field is located. While that hasn’t yet happened, 100 years from now that will be a certainty, short of our Lord’s Second Coming prior to that time. Until then, we pray and we listen to the Lord’s promptings to direct our mission in the years ahead. May we be empowered by the Spirit as stewards to serve the Lord and each other for another 100 years.
Blessings in Christ,
Fr. William Holtzinger