Around 9 am on Saturday, March 2, 9 students and 2 chaperones from Western Michigan University at Kalamazoo will be arriving at St. Ann rectory, to take up residence for a week of service. They will be working with Beyond Housing, from about 9 am to ~3:30 pm daily. Then they will return here, for dinner, reflection, community building and support. They also will visit some of the city, as well as tap into some of the Newman Center sponsored programs during Social Justice month.

They’ll be sleeping on couches, floors, and the occasional spare beds scattered through the house. And meeting in the Library and/or Living room. They will also join us for Sunday morning worship (not sure which mass), though I am not sure of the religious makeup of the group. They have done service trips here for several years, but the place where they had grown accustomed to staying changed their policy about service trips, which left them scrambling for a place. Though the Newman Center was an option, one shower for 11 people would not have been ideal. We have the room and the space, and their promise to leave the place cleaner than when they arrived…. So if you see all kinds of lights on, late into the evening, and a few minivans parked in the lots, you’ll know who it is… (And, no, they don’t do windows.)

This past Sunday marked the Rite of Election and Call to Continuing Conversion for folks in the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults. It is one of the pivotal moments in a journey toward full communion with the Catholic Church. And it invites us, the St. Ann Community, to become more intentionally focused on prayer and support of these, our candidates.

For reception into the full communion of the Catholic Church, we have Tina Ingoldsby and Elizabeth McKinney, both Newman Center Students. For the sacrament of Confirmation, Erika Kuekenmeister, Brooke Murray, and Nikki Island are all in the final stages of their preparation. And for the sacrament of Baptism, we have the children of our grade school aid, Dequina Henderson being tutored under the watchful eye of Mrs. Gen Barton. We will welcome Te’ella and Tahj into as newborn Catholics into the life of grace. Please keep them all in your prayers in the days to come.