January 29, 2015
January 28, 2015
We all recall the devastation in Joplin when a tornado descended on the town destroying life and property in May 2011. Now, I am happy to announce that our diocesan collection resulted in gifts totaling more than $150,000.00 which were sent directly to Bishop James V Johnston. (Many other donations were sent immediately and directly to Bishop Johnston from Catholics in the diocese.)
Printed with this letter is correspondence that I received from Bishop Johnston to
the many people around the country who had responded with prayers and
With my kindest regards and prayerful good wishes, I remain
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Most Rev. Edward J. Slattery
Bishop of Tulsa
May God's blessings be with you.
December 9, 2014
On Sunday May 2, 2011, a devastating tornado struck the city of Joplin, Missouri. The destruction and suffering that descended on the city and on our own parish in Joplin, St. Mary's, was incomprehensible. It was up to various faith communities, the city of Joplin, neighboring towns and cities, and the entire Midwest to meet the immediate needs of the people. It was imperative to immediately console the sorrowing, feed the hungry, shelter the homeless, and bury the dead. The community responded admirably. and we were blessed to have Catholic Charities of Southern Missouri coordinate our diocese's efforts to respond to the tragedy.
Then came the long period of healing and rebuilding. This required the time and talents of many Catholics and non-Catholics alike. The parish and the diocese were blessed to have been the recipients of abundant kindness from many good-willed people who gave of themselves in so many ways. Many volunteers spent days and weeks in the area in recovery and cleanup efforts. We also received financial contributions from many dioceses and individual donors, which were a clear demonstration that people all over the country wanted to help St. Mary's, the diocese, and the community in any way they could.
This brings us to this letter - some 3 1/2 years later. As a result of insurance proceeds, a parish capital campaign, and the gifts of so many generous and diverse donors throughout the country, S1. Mary's will soon complete the rebuilding of its facilities. The school, which opened this past August with an enrollment of over 200 students, is spacious, beautifully designed, energy efficient, and is a model of a facility conducive to delivering a state-of-the-art Catholic educational program. The new church will be dedicated on December 17, 2014. The new church building, constructed to seat 750. is a beautiful house of worship of almighty God, and will include beautiful church and liturgical accessories. I personally invite you to visit St. Mary's if the opportunity should arise in the future .
As a key donor and a valued friend of St. Mary's Parish in Joplin and the Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau, we wanted you to know how excited we are, and how thankful we are to you. During our dedication, we will be offering special prayers for all of you and your loved ones who helped to make this day possible. As we prepare for the Nativity of Our Lord, may we all be mindful of the blessings He shares with us in so many ways.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Most Reverend James V. Johnston, Jr., D.D., J.C.L.
Bishop of Springfield-Cape Girardeau