Tonawanda News


January 25, 2014

And the fight goes on


Tonawanda News — —  Doug Smith emailed that Tonawanda United Methodist Church prayed for St. Francis at last Sunday’s service.

— A woman who described herself as an “old senior citizen” asked if I would put in a suggestion that people, instead of giving to Catholic Charities, give to the St. Francis Endowment Fund.”

(I don’t concur with that idea because Catholic Charities provides many needed services and really has no role in this disagreement.)

— Kudos to the North Tonawanda and City of Tonawanda common councils and the Niagara County Legislature for giving such outstanding resolutions on behalf of St. Francis School. I can’t remember when the Twin Cities came together to support such an effort. One woman at the DeGraff Auxiliary tea said she knew that if Betty Hoffman were still mayor, she would have done the same. I agreed.

Joan Davern, who lives in Williamsville, emailed that she had just read the column about St. Francis closing.

“My five children went to Catholic grammar and high schools. They all graduated from college and are doing very well and are active in their community To not give children and parents this same opportunity is so against any teaching of our Catholic Church. Is everything now based on politics? No Buffalo schools on the closing list? I am very disappointed in our Catholic leadership.”

In closing this week’s commentary a mention must be made of the St. Francis meeting Thursday evening, a wonderful uplifting and faith-filled event. The standing ovation and prolonged clapping and cheering for the parish’s outstanding pastor, Father Mike Uebler, was a sure sign of solidarity and an outpouring of the love and admiration people have for this man. His humble comment that “I would rather be in a pew than preaching” was so true to his nature and left hardly a dry eye in the place.

Mark Saltarelli gave a clear, concise roundup of the happenings. People listened attentively and politely to all his remarks. There were no shout outs, yelling, angry outbursts (probably what the TV stations were hoping for) — just a community of parents, grandparents, alumni, parishioners, legislators and some from schools also on the “close” list all seeking answers from the diocese.

Keep praying that happens.

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