It has been a tough couple of weeks on the home front. The refrigerator stopped cooling, and the freezer stopped freezing. The dishwasher has been leaking, and the garage door was not rolling smoothly along the tracks.

The dryer has been making a high-pitched squealing noise for a month or two now. We were fortunate to find a new refrigerator and get a new gear for the garage door. The appliance guy says the dryer is 21 years old, so not much hope there. Sometimes, as a homeowner, it is just time to upgrade.

Our campus grounds here at church are no different.

Over the past several years, our facilities have gotten “tired.” The roofs have aged, heating and air conditioning has begun to break down, and the restrooms just do not work as well as they once did. It is time for an upgrade! We have been blessed by many generous stewards who have given to the Building Fund over the past two years. Many improvements and enhancements have already been made. The Bell Tower renovation, foundation work, eight new HVAC units and many other projects have been completed. We are looking forward to a new roof on our oldest building – the seventh and eighth grade classroom wing – along with a new roof on the Holy Hallway connecting the school and the church this summer. The restrooms between the gym and Cana Hall will also be redone and modernized this year.

Progress is being made, but it is time to make a plan to finalize all the building projects needed for the next three years. Between now and the end of May, we have contracted with the Steier Group to conduct a Feasibility Study. This outreach will assist us in determining how many more of the facilities enhancements we can complete from the Faith Forward five-year plan. These upgrades include new roofs for the balance of the school building and gym and new HVAC for the church (still running since 1977), St. Clare Hall, and the school. We also hope to improve St. Clare Hall, add new pews and flooring for the church, and renovate Bonaventure and the office area to increase efficiency and add meeting space.

These projects will require all of us to stretch. The stewardship way of life has provided for the ordinary needs of our parish for more than 50 years. These projects are extraordinary stewardship, and we will be asking all stewards to participate in providing for these improvements. It is our turn to step up and provide for the long-term health of our facilities here at the parish and school. Extraordinary stewardship, over and above our normal 8% gift of treasure, will be needed over the next three years to complete these needed upgrades.

The time is now to trust in our Lord’s goodness to provide for our parish family’s needs. Please prayerfully consider how the Lord is calling you to serve and be generous with your time, talent and treasure as we move our faith forward. Also, if anyone knows where I can get a new non-squealing dryer, please let me know. St. Francis of Assisi, pray for us.

Pat Burns, Director of Stewardship & Finance