Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Update from Bill Derry and the St. Joseph and Sons' Leadership Team

There has been a great deal of good work being by the Joes during the past few months. We have completed a project at St. Stanislaus parish that replaced and repaired several entrance doors. We are working on at both St. James in Rockford and in Belvidere. The rectory in Rockford is in need to plaster repair and painting. This is being accomplished by the Joes and the parishioners. At St. James Belvidere we were part of the team that rallied to prepare the church for the dedication Mass in December and will return to assist with the landscaping in May. We continue to provide assistance to St. Elizabeth Center and the Poor Clares.

We are working with the men of St. John Neumann to establish a St. Joseph and Sons team at their parish. The Leadership Team is in place and there are a number of men committed to identifying and completing a project in the area.

We are continue to give of our time, talent and treasure consistent with our mission statement. Thank you for your support and we encourage you to consider more involvement.

- Bill

2015 Lenten Project Recap - St. James Rockford

St. James Church in Rockford was in need of some updating to the paster walls in some areas of the rectory and guest areas. 

Here is previous post from the removal of plaster and first day of work.  

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-

2015 Lenten Project Recap - Poor Clares Mary Garden - Still in progress!

The Sisters at Poor Clares in Rockford have honored us with a request to help update their Mary Garden as one of our Lenten 2015 Projects. The Joes have been hard at work and are still moving toward completion of the project. Much of the indoor construction of the trellis has been completed and work will move outdoors soon.

Here is previous post from the planning and early on in the process of the project.  2015 Lenten Project - Poor Clares Mary Garden

Check out some of our progress since the previous post:

The Joes also had the opportunity to help with some plumbing updates that were needed at Poor Clares. We changed out two toilets and flush values to a new heigh for the nuns. Several faucets and spout gaskets in their upper and lower cell area bathrooms. As always, The Joes had a lot of fun completing the work and spending time together!