Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Rain, wind --- and Episcopal priests

Flooding and wind damage resulting from a stormy night in Iowa seem to have been confined mostly to the southwest --- and nothing too severe. But it was an interesting night for radar-watchers.

A wide swath that included much of the southern part of the state was under a hot pink "high risk" warning, but fortunately the risk didn't turn into reality.

The risk apparently was so high that it resulted in Iowa getting special mention in evening weather reports nationwide, resulting in some inquiries from concerned friends. Yes, we're still here. And yes, M.E.M. --- spending a month elsewhere --- so far as I know the roof still is on your house.

I wish we could figure out a way to share some of this moisture with parts of the country experiencing drought. 

I've managed to get nearly everything planted that needed to be planted before yesterday's downpours began --- only one more major expedition to Ellis Greenhouse I figure. In most cases it's not even been necessary to water in the plants --- nature has taken care of that.


If those of us associated with St. Andrew's Church seem a little frazzled during June, it's in part because we're looking forward to the ordination into the Episcopal priesthood of the Rev. Frederick L. Steinbach on July 6. Fred was ordained into the transitional diaconate last December at the Cathedral Church of St. Paul in Des Moines after three years of study and internship.

This is a second career for Fred, who moved back to his hometown with wife, Sherry, after retiring as a educator in Wyoming. Not many of us would have had the resolve required to do it --- the process from discernment to completion of studies in May has taken an incredible amount of time and effort in addition to a great deal of travel --- to Chicago, Dubuque and Des Moines on a regular basis.

And the tragic death last summer of our vicar, the Rev. Sue Palmer, propelled Fred into a leadership position at both St. Andrew's and Grace several months earlier than anticipated.

St. Andrew's has been around since 1867 and this will be the first time an Episcopal priest has been ordained here. Lucas County Steinbachs traditionally have been among the rocks upon which Sacred Heart Church is founded, so it's interesting that first Episcopal priest to be ordained in Lucas County is a part of a family with such a long record of church leadership (Fred actually is named for two family members who were Roman Catholic priests).

So we're looking forward to July, but there's lots to be done. New blinds went up in the parish hall yesterday, formal invitations (to be sent to all Episcopal parishes and priests in the state) are ready to be printed and someone will be in town later in the week to make sure the old organ is ready for the big day. Now where are we going to put the tent? We'll keep you posted.

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