"When I heard Father Tupper was coming to town to start a new parish, I called him and asked him to sign me up. As the various committees formed, we met at Father Dale’s house, and on Sundays we arrived an hour early at the bingo hall to hang banners over the clown faces and roll the altar out from the storage closet. While the bingo hall served us well and my kids loved having Sunday School on the carpet squares behind the bingo cash register counter, we were all excited about finally getting into our new church. The procession of cars from the bingo hall to our new church was a combination of a parade-like celebration and a very solemn event. We filed quietly and respectfully into our new church and circled the altar and just took it all in. It was a very special moment, and 20 years later, we are still circling the altar as a community at each Mass." ~Karen Rust
"I was involved in music that day. I was singing and playing guitar with the Kulzer girls (Jenny and Anne) and Francis Aning (and possibly Joseph). The trick for us was that we began the Mass at Circus World Bingo and then the whole congregation was to commute over to the new church building. Our group had to take off quick and we took a short cut over to the new church so we could be there playing music when everyone arrived. We were playing "God of Abraham" as everyone arrived and the drums were going strong (thanks to the Anings). The percussion boomed off of the new walls and concrete floor compared to the low ceiling and carpeting at Circus World which just absorbed sound. There was a thunderous applause after everyone arrived and we finally could stop playing "God of Abraham". Our hands hurt from playing so long. Every face was filled with joy as we completed the Liturgy. I remember Father Dale was beaming. There was another great applause at the end of Mass. Holy Spirit was ready to really grow now."
"There were many reasons for great joy that day. If nothing else, folks were grateful that their clothes wouldn't smell like smoke after Sunday Mass anymore."
~ Deacon Joe
"Stepping into the new building for the first time was amazing. It was like seeing a new baby that you know will be significant in your life. The sense of wonder, joy, and hope for the future: knowing many of your family's life events will happen here. The light and spaciousness drew us in."
"It is hard to believe that it has been 20 years since our first mass at Holy Spirit–A Light on the Hilltop! It was a beautiful day. The sun was shining as we marched up the hill and into the church with the bagpipes playing. We all had smiling faces.
The Building Committee and all of the parishioners had worked so hard to make this day happen. After many long meetings of planning at our dining room table, all of our plans and dreams for our new worship space had come true. The building had that new smell to it from the lumber, sheet rock and concrete. We had no chairs, but we didn’t care as we all gathered around the alter to celebrate Mass and worship together.
We still had a long way to go to complete the interior and add the finishing touches, but it was such a good feeling to finally be in our own permanent worship space. We all worked hard together and we were like a family moving into our first home. When we enter Holy Spirit today, we often times think about how it has changed and grown over the years. May we continue to worship and grow in our faith and may our Light on the Hilltop be a welcome sign for all to come and worship.
Congratulations Holy Spirit on your 20th anniversary. We are proud to be members of the Holy Spirit family."
~Joe and Marilyn Kocer
"Brad, Michele and Becky were in a car in the middle of the pack during the procession along 55th St to the new Holy Spirit church. We remember driving by the original plot of land that had been purchased and thinking, "Boy, we ended up with a nicer location (at that time in the middle of nowhere)! Once we arrived, we sat with our friends, the Steve Braddish family, for the special Mass; and even after 20 years, we still sit in the very same section as we did that first day!
We remember that the church was much smaller in size back then due to the offices around the perimeter but at the same time we felt it to be so much more spacious than the Bingo Hall and it didn't smell of smoke!"
~Brad and Michele Schmidt
"It was a very moving experience! A community coming together to worship for the first time in our new church after enjoying our last Mass at the bingo hall! A very special day!" ~Sue Broich
"I recollect that day a bit since our daughters (Jennifer and Anne) were part of the music group (Joe Weigel and I think Angela Sutton were the other musicians and possibly Lynne Granander as the organist) that was in the front of the procession. We were at the bingo hall early so our daughters could prepare with the other musicians for this exciting day. I believe Dave and I were towards the end of the group arriving at church so were on the fringe of the crowd. I remember standing in the empty space with the cement floor as the parishioners arranged themselves in a circle around the altar." ~Dave & Karen Kulzer
"Father Dale’s statement several years before 'If we build it they will come' was unfolding before our eyes.
The day was filled with excitement and of the feeling of the Holy Spirit guiding us on a journey that had started many years before was just truly beginning.
From the day of our first Mass in the bingo hall to today, we see new faces every Sunday. It truly brings joy to my heart to see our vision to share our faith continuing today.
As we celebrate this incredible mile stone, it is a time for us to reflect not on our church building, but the people and the lives we have touched.
Our name Holy Spirit fits us well as it is in the Spirit that we continue to share the word of God with all who join us at Mass and all we touch in our everyday lives."
"That was a wonderful day for all of us parishioners at Holy Spirit. Since we came from a bingo hall, to a beautiful site up on a hill, into a new edifice, it was a very special day. The one thing I look back on that day that I will always remember was that I just happened to be scheduled to carry the cross into the church for the first Mass celebration. That turned out to be very neat and I will always remember that day. I also was on the committee which selected many of the furnishings for the new Church, including the wood chairs which we still use today, the altar, the processional cross and many items. We love this Parish as much today as back then."
~Dick and Molly Pingel
"My recollections of the day are bits and pieces, but I especially remember the excitement of everyone as we celebrated the Liturgy of the Word at the bingo hall and then got in our vehicles and processed to the new church site on 50th Avenue for the Liturgy of the Eucharist. The newspaper photo showed a number of vehicles coming down the hill from the south on 50th Avenue (it was still a gravel road then) but the procession was much longer than the photo portrayed. We had all worked so hard for this day, through the input sessions for the wants and desires for the church, the Capital Campaign, finding the appropriate site, and particularly putting up with the smoky atmosphere of the bingo hall. God provided a sunny, bright day for our celebration which matched the enthusiasm of the parish.
I remember it as being very festive and joyful, with Dick Sonsalla’s bagpipes leading the way. The liturgical music especially resounded in joy in the new space as we gathered around the altar to celebrate the Eucharist. The walls were still unpainted, making the church look unfinished, but that didn’t matter to anyone because we were home! Baskets and bags of food for Channel One surrounded the altar as we gave thanks for the bounty bestowed on us.
Just as today, our hearts and arms were open to welcome all who came to join our family. As the number of families grew, the presence of the Spirit brought us together in faith and hope. The parish is aptly named, Holy Spirit, because the Spirit has always been the source of all good (I like to think we’re special in the Spirit’s eyes). Holy Spirit has become for many a place we call ‘home’ as it beckons us back after being away on vacation, etc. There is no family like Holy Spirit, and I pray that we never lose that sense of comfort."
~Joyce Guenther Campion
"I was nearly ten when we gathered in the field on top of the hill for the groundbreaking ceremony for Holy Spirit. I remember being surrounded by familiar faces of friends and family. Everyone was looking so hopeful, joyful, proud, and grateful. I have an image of Father Tupper blessing the spot and digging in with a shovel. It is an image that I return to often when I drive to church. Bringing my family to Mass at Holy Spirit now makes me think of how far we have come since that first shovel. Still a strong community of faith, but growing and changing all the same."