Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington



From the

Official News Magazine of the Diocese of Spokane

Eric Meisfjord, Editor
P.O. Box 48, Spokane WA 99210
(509) 358-7340; FAX: (509) 358-7302


Compiled by Father Tom Caswell, for the Inland Register

(From the February 21, 2013 edition of the Inland Register)

From the Inland Register
Vol. XXI, No. 23
Fifty Years Ago: January 11, 1963

Diocesan Digest

Pasco: On Jan. 8 parishioners enjoyed the long-awaited potluck feast sponsored by St. Patrick Parish’s Altar Society. The affair was held in the parish hall, with Father William Schmitz an honored guest. Parishioners’ favorite recipes were featured; there was a gift exchange, and new officers were installed.

Mrs. Adolph Von Hallebeke will retain the office of president for her third term; Mrs. Robert Carden remains vice president, and Mrs. Axel Anderson continues as treasurer. The only new officer to be installed was Mrs. Cecil Schlagel, who will function as secretary.

Hostesses for the evening were Mrs. P.J. Dougherty, chairman, assisted by Mrs. Gene Clement, Mrs. Adolph Von Hollebeke, Mrs. Walter Lyons, Mrs. Robert Carden, Mrs. Keith Cunningham, Mrs. Cy Palmer, Mrs. George Shinker, Mrs. Leroy Westerman, and Phyllis Hedrick.

On Dec. 23 all the persons of Mexican descent in the Pasco area were invited to attend the Mexican Christmas celebration – posada – in the school auditorium.

The event opened with Benediction given by Father Schmitz at the church and was followed by a procession to the school, where the traditional piñatas were broken. According to Mexican tradition, the children are the Holy Family searching for shelter, which is not found until the end of seven days – on Christmas.

Claudio Olivares, an exchange student from Chile, was a guest at the party.

The Catholic Daughters of the Americas Court 1611 sponsored a Christmas shower for St. Anne’s Infants’ Home, Spokane, and for the three local homes for the aged Dec. 19 in the parish hall.

Cards were played and coffee served. Hostesses for the evening were Mrs. Don Fleming, chairman, assisted by Mrs. Norman Job, Mrs. Grover Hodgen, Mrs. M.W. Stricker, Anne Peterson, and Rose Hoffman.

Mrs. Elmer Ward, a member of Court Our Lady of Fatima, delivered the gifts for St. Anne’s small charges, and Junior Catholic Daughters, directed by Miss Patty George, made the presentation at the homes for the aged.

– Mrs. John Storm, Correspondent

Colfax: On Dec. 30 the Cuban youngsters housed at St. John Academy presented an entertainment for the public. Featured were “Toyland” and “A Night in Havana,” produced and directed by Dr. Nestor Mederos and Mrs. Mederos, both instructors at the academy.

Later the all-male choir of St. Patrick Church, directed by David Hoffard, sang “Veni Jesu” and “Ave Maria.” Members of the Elks Club quartet – Carl Ousley, Hoffard, Harold Huber, and Wesley Nuxoll – presented several numbers.

Gilleramo Celay, a native of Spain now residing at Hooper, Wash., entertained the group with Spanish songs and accordion numbers. The Cuban children joined Gilleramo in several “community sings.”

– Margaret Huck, Correspondent

Oroville: The YO of Immaculate Conception Parish entertained at a holiday dance and party Dec. 30 at the parish hall. Out-of-town parishes represented by guests included Tonasket, Wash., and Osoyoos and Oliver, B.C.

Mr. and Mrs. Albert Descateaux, Mrs. Rex Harden, and Mrs. James Kernan, Jr., acted.

New CYO officers elected for the coming year were Jesse Zesieager, president; Kathleen Kernan, vice president; Patty Wisener, secretary; and Donald Kiser, treasurer.

Two Masses were celebrated at Othello on Christmas – a Midnight High Mass, at which the choir sang, and a low Mass at 8:30 Christmas morning. Parish children brought foods and gifts and presented them to the Infant in the crib for the parish needy – a practice intended to underline the observance of Christmas as a period of giving, rather than receiving.

– Mrs. Norman Shultz, correspondent


From the Inland Register
Vol. 45, No. 12
Twenty-five Years Ago: March 3, 1988

Four in Tekoa honored for community, church service

by Bonita Lawhead, for the Inland Register

Three members of Sacred Heart Parish, Tekoa, were honored for their years of dedicated service not only to the parish but to their community. A fourth individual was honored posthumously.

Wayne and Sallie Bowmer and Ida Kerzmann received special plaques from the Diocese of Spokane at the parish’s Christmas potluck, held in the parish hall. Ida’s late husband, Frank, was also named on the plaque.

Bishop Lawrence Welsh attended the short ceremony to present the plaques. Father Joe Hiên commended the couple for their long years of service.

According to a letter the parish council sent to the diocese applying for the award, the Bowmers and the Kerzmanns have served their parish and community in many ways.

Ida is the parish’s oldest member. She and her family moved to Tekoa in 1908. Ida and her mother had a maternity home and a nursing center at their residence for 25 years. Many families have had children born at Ida’s home.

She and her husband – they were married in 1949 – were instrumental in starting a fund for maintenance of the Catholic cemetery. They also did maintenance work at the cemetery and the church itself for many years. Frank died in 1984.

Wayne and Frank looked after the church, the parish house, and the parish hall downtown, doing all kinds of jobs, from laying linoleum to fixing leaky faucets. Both men also served on the parish council when it was started in the 1970s.

Sallie taught religion classes to parish children for 10 years, receiving a special certificate for her efforts. She also cleaned the parish house. Both Ida and Sallie cleaned at the church, too. Ida remembered when there were wood floors at the church: “We had to watch for splinters when we cleaned.”

Ida sang in the choir as well.

The Bowmers moved to Tekoa in 1935 and raised four children. They have been married nearly 55 years.

Both couples raised gardens and shared the produce with their neighbors. They were always willing to help anyone in need.

Bowmers offered rides, collected mail, and shopped for many people in town. For many years Wayne hauled water for a reclusive elderly gentleman in Tekoa. Even today Wayne turns on the heat at the church each week for Mass and collects the mail for the pastor, Father Hiên.

Bishop Welsh expressed his appreciation for their dedication and faithfulness. He went over to the Bowmers later to give personal congratulations to Sallie, who was unable to attend the ceremony because of her arthritis.

Members of the parish council, in the application letter, said the couples’ lives were a witness to their faith.

“Their lives are bound with their faith and not separate from it …. Their church, because it is part of their faith, was and is important to them. And that’s the greatest witness of all.”

(Father Caswell is archivist for the Inland Register, and a frequent contributor to this publication.)


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