By Jan Touney
For The Catholic Messenger
BETTENDORF — Steve Angrisano humbly lays down a challenge for the people of St. John Vianney and Our Lady of Lourdes parishes before his arrival to lead a two-day mission in April.
“Any mission or retreat you go on, it’s kind of a moment in time,” he said. “It’s best if it’s part of a larger commitment in your life to open your heart to what God is saying.”
It’s not what he will “bring” to the mission, he said, but “it’s us as a community coming to it together.”
The mission begins at Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in Bettendorf on April 10, and continues at St. John Vianney Parish in Bettendorf on April 11. Both sessions take place from 6:30-8 p.m. He strongly encourages attendance at both.
“Come to the first night and be willing to go the second night,” he said. “Each night is different, and they build on each other.”
During a phone interview from an airport in between trips to Ohio and California, Angrisano acknowledges that the two years of the pandemic have been difficult.
“There’s no such thing as a virtual body of Christ,” he said. “This has been a hard time. We do need each other.”
Those who attend — and he is encouraging families to come together — can expect an evening of music, prayer, storytelling and audience participation.
Noting that not everyone has returned to church since pandemic restrictions have eased, he asks that people consider inviting someone to attend. “It really would be awesome to find a few of our friends who haven’t been to church in awhile.”
Asked how someone can prepare for the mission, he said to take a little time each day in prayer.
“It’s as simple as a few seconds to say ‘Lord, open my heart and help me to see you and to be who you call me to be today.’”