Saint Joseph and Sons is a Northern Illinois Catholic Organization dedicated to helping the community and their maintenance needs. Through communication with parishes and Diocese headquarters, a minimum of three projects will be selected each year based on the capabilities of the group.
Lent 2015 Update Any time the Joes get together to meet or work- we specifically include a time of spiritual reflection and discussion. Joe Altenhoff has this to say about the spiritual reflection at St. James on our work days here:
Our Lenten project at St. James rectory was done at the same time as our other Joes worked at the Poor Clair's Convent. For our first Lenten session, we read the daily reading and reflected on how it impacted us this Lent.
This first weekend was also the first weekend at Poor Clair's. Life at the convent is mostly quite so we decided to work in communion with our Poor Clair's brethren for the first hour in silence.
It was difficult at first but then the work seemed to take on a uniqueness. We thought about working as a sacrifice, as a penance, as a gift.
At one time the sound of scraping water damaged plaster from the walls sounded like a strange type of song with repeating rhythms and notes.
The silence actually lasted more than an hour. Discussions during lunch were richer than normal and spiritually healthy for the team.
Our second session was lead by an active participant from the first session, a fellow Joe from St. James, Tim Barkdoll. Tim started the reading from the Acts of the Apostles where they are feeling the affects of the Holy Spirit on their bold beliefs.
Tim asked us the question, 'Why do you believe?' The responses challenged us to really think about our faith in a way that we could discuss it with others. The question pushed us all to think harder about our gift of faith and to be able to express it to ourselves and the outside world.
We thanked Tim for his good work in preparing our group for the work ahead that day.
Here are some photo updates from the second day and painting portion of the project-
St. James Church in Rockford was in need of some updating to the paster walls in some areas of the rectory and guest areas. The Joes had fun making a mess removing areas where the plaster was cracked and we will be painting as soon as the plaster is patched in a few weeks. We also made time for spiritual reflection during our meal and shared some of the things we are learning in Lent.
The guys admiring their work
Large area over stairs had a good amount of cracked plaster to be removed
Can't be afraid of heights if you want to be a Joe
Dale is hard at work
These guys covered this whole hallway! A lot accomplished in a day
Don't let the smile fool you- this guy is all business
Final wall- 1 hour of work / 10 guys? 6 minutes of work
Community is the best part about working with the Joes