When a St. Francis parishioner noticed an ad on a Southeast Kansas sales site she saw potential for a church improvement project. Our Lady of Lourdes was doing a complete interior renovation and some items were being discarded — among those items were pew cushions.
A Stewardship Project Gets Underway.
St. Francis has looked at pew cushions in the past, but the $25,000 cost kept the project on a back burner. Curious about the advertisement, Terri Morrow made a call and then drove to Pittsburg to investigate. The cushions appeared to be in good condition, but Lourdes had included new cushions in their renovation plan.
After checking with Father David and Altar Society President Elaine VanLeeuwen, she got a “GO” and called to make arrangements to pick them up.
There was a catch. Lourdes had a contractor and a group of parishioners ready to gut the interior of the church on Monday, May 15, and the cushions had to be picked up by 9:00 that morning or they would be hauled away. Terri rounded up a pickup truck, and some help, to go get what we thought would be “about fifty cushions.” That should be enough to fill the front pews-bay of St. Francis.
We showed up at Lourdes on the 15th to discover that “about fifty” was closer to "one-hundred.” But with the help of a Lourdes volunteer we were able to get most of the cushions in the bed and cab of the pickup; then we stuffed every part of Terri’s car but the driver’s seat. If there had been an accident, she was well-protected. The cushions were taken to the PSR Building in St. Paul for inspection and some planning. A few issues had to be addressed:
So what will this stewardship project cost? When completed, the cost will include lots of driving, coordination, phone calls, planning, lifting, cleaning, sweating, moving and a few cuts and scrapes. But the total cost, to be paid by the St. Francis Altar Society, should not exceed $700! Instead of filling only the front bay of pews, there will be enough cushions to fill nearly the entire church. (There has been some discussion about loaves, fishes and cushions!)
A Project Overview Slide-Show:
Don’t Move The Cushions.
Existing spaces in center pews should be filled by September. However, since the first set of cushions entered the church, several have been slid to an opposite end of pews. This can damage the expensive foam underlay and is creating more work for the team. Also, moving a pew cushion to your end of the pew means someone else sits on wood. That is not stewardship.
 So Far, Terri's Team consists of herself, Rosie Brogan, Jean Diskin, the St. Francis Altar Society and Ron Brogan.
 When completed, pews on all of the two center rows will be fully covered with the exception of about 15” on the outside ends of the column pews. There will be a similar end gap on all of the outside (window) pews.
This is the community website for the St. Francis de Hieronymo and St. Ambrose Catholic Churches in Neosho County, Kansas. Both churches are located in the center of the historic nine-county southeast Kansas area. We share one of the richest Catholic Heritages in Southern Kansas and the Four-State Region. For more information about our churches, history, organizations or programs browse our site including its links.