A Note from Deacon Bill

A Note from Bill Biver

Is Deacon Bill Retiring?

Perhaps you may have heard that I am retiring and wonder what that means. To clarify, it means that: yes, I am retiring and no, I am not retiring.

I am retiring in the sense that upon recently turning 71 on April 18, I resigned from the paid staff position of Pastoral Care/Social Justice Coordinator at St. Joseph the Worker in which I’ve been employed since Dec. 31, 2013.  My responsibilities in that capacity have included providing daily facilitation of requests for rent, food, utility bills, gas, etc. from the SJTW Social Justice Fund and parish food pantry, coordinating volunteers for Third Sunday collections, for Eucharistic ministry to the homebound on weekends, for hospital and nursing home visitation, activities related to Du-Ride, the distribution of gift cards via the July Giving Tree, food baskets at Thanksgiving and Christmas, gifts via the Christmas Giving Tree, and providing general oversight for the St. Patrick’s Parish and Rescue Mission meals. Going forward, these tasks will be re-distributed either to other staff members or parish volunteers at St. Joseph the Worker.

However, as an ordained deacon still assigned by Archbishop Jackels to serve in liturgical, pastoral, and charitable ministry at both St. Columbkille and St. Joseph the Worker, I will continue to provide unpaid diaconal ministry as follows in both parishes:

  • Liturgical Ministry – Assisting at Mass and Preaching upon request; Presiding at Baptisms, Benediction, Communion Services, Funerals, Wake Services, and Weddings.
  • Pastoral Ministry – Conducting Adoration/Healing Services; Facilitating annulments; Praying with parishioners for healing; Being available to serve as a Spiritual Director for CEW’s or other spiritual growth activities.
  • Charitable – Overseeing Loose Change Collections and the Parish Crisis Fund at SC; Supporting some of the Social Justice Committee activities at SJTW.

For the short term, I’ll also continue conducting baptismal preparation classes at St. Columbkille and marriage preparation at both parishes.

I have highly appreciated the opportunity to have served St. Joseph the Worker as a paid staff member. I now look forward to continuing as a member of the staff of both parishes, now in a more conventional role as a deacon. More than likely this will continue for at least another four years as the normal retirement age for deacons in the Archdiocese of Dubuque is age 75.

With sincere gratitude,

Deacon Bill Biver