One faith community, two worship sites
04 June 2021 Volume 75
June 1, 2021
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Just a few weeks ago, Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul issued a press release and held a news conference to announce that he was launching a review of old reports of clergy abuse within the Catholic Church. It is with sorrow and regret that once again I have to write to you on this topic. When we received the request, I asked my staff to meet with the Attorney General to find a pathway for him to lawfully achieve his goal. We believe we have offered a way to provide what the Attorney General has requested while continuing to walk with survivors, maintaining the Church’s rights and avoiding unnecessary expense.
The Church continues to pray for abuse survivors and keep their needs a priority. Since 1989, the Archdiocese of Milwaukee has continuously provided outreach to abuse survivors, arranged for therapy and made available counseling to survivors and their families. We have continued to work with abuse survivors to improve the Church’s response to those who have been harmed, and we have also put stringent preventative measures in place. In addition, we have supported extending the statute of limitations to allow more time for prosecution of offenders, and the Archdiocese of Milwaukee has provided more than $50 million in direct payments to individual abuse survivors.
We can never apologize enough, and I am so sincerely sorry for what happened to these individuals. The abuse they suffered was not their fault. It was the fault of criminals who used the sanctity of the priesthood to commit crimes, and I am sick to my stomach when I think about it. Never could I have imagined when I became a priest that such behavior could have occurred. 
As the Attorney General launches this very public effort, it’s also important to remember all the work that has already been done. For example, all the names of diocesan priests with a substantiated allegation of sexual abuse of a minor were posted on our website in 2004. The list has been updated, and more documents added for full transparency.
The Catholic Church is the largest provider of Safe Environment programs in Wisconsin, and this mandatory education means nearly 100,000 individuals have been trained to recognize potential abuse/abusers and have heightened awareness of this societal scourge. Furthermore, criminal background checks are required for all bishops, priests, deacons, staff and volunteers working with children. Independent reporting mechanisms are in place so people can report suspected behavior.
On a personal level, I have continued the practice started by my predecessor of meeting with abuse survivors and their families. I have heard their stories and understand why the vast majority of abuse survivors do not want public attention. I am always moved at our annual Mass of Atonement, a beautiful and spiritual expression of the Church’s deep sorrow and true remorse for what occurred. I continue to ask for forgiveness before God on behalf of the Church. To do more, the Archdiocese has established a Community Advisory Board with advocates, outside experts and abuse survivors to gain their wisdom and counsel as we provide ongoing support.
While the Archdiocese has done a lot, we can and should do more, and that includes cooperating with the Attorney General in any proper inquiry he might undertake. As such, we will once again voluntarily provide access to documents and information on any living individual against whom a new allegation is made. This is already our practice and, if there are any new prosecutable crimes, the Church will offer its assistance. 
Many of you may recall that during our bankruptcy proceeding, 99 percent of the abuse claims went back 30 years or more, and only one claim was from later than the year 2000. This reinforces the historical nature of these crimes and indicates that education and prevention efforts are effective. During those proceedings, Federal Bankruptcy Court Judge Susan V. Kelley reviewed all the claims and stated that “no public safety concern is present.” Judge Kelley also confirmed the claims were old and against known abusers.
In addition to the review by Judge Kelley, Archdiocesan files have been reviewed multiple times over the past 30 years. First by a retired Milwaukee County Circuit Court Judge; then by civil authorities, including the Milwaukee County District Attorney; and also by an outside firm of former FBI agents; to make sure no allegations had gone uncovered -- which brings us back to the Attorney General’s press conference on the Capitol steps.
There is significant doubt that the Attorney General has the legal authority to conduct such an investigation. We have legitimate concerns that his inquiry is directly targeting only the Catholic Church. We have accepted our past history and worked so vigilantly to correct how things are handled, but it’s the Church that is continually targeted. Just last month a Fox Valley public school teacher was charged with three tragic sex crimes involving children, and school officials apparently knew about inappropriate touching allegations five years ago, yet no disciplinary action was taken. Rather than rehashing old files from 40, 50 and 60 years ago, it seems like the Church could be a model for others to follow and the Attorney General could be investigating ongoing crimes from today, not from decades past.
We know mistakes were made in how some previous cases were handled, but today’s Church is now a model for how this issue is addressed. The Archdiocese of Milwaukee must simply and humbly, with regret, sorrow, contrition and resolve, continue to do our best to ensure to the best of our ability that nothing like this can ever happen again. We are firm in that resolve, and we demonstrate that commitment through the actions we have taken. No institution in the country has done more to combat the societal issue of sexual abuse of minors in the past 20 years than the Catholic Church.
That is a record we, as Catholics, can be and should be proud of. But we must remain vigilant in these advances, remembering foremost our care and concern and fervent prayer for those who have been harmed as we live out Jesus’ command to LOVE ONE ANOTHER.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Most Reverend Jerome E. Listecki
Archbishop of Milwaukee
St. Clare and St. Thomas
Welcome Back Celebration
Two worship sites. One Faith Community
Our parishes have teamed up to create a "Welcome Back" weekend celebration now that we can gather as a faith community. Guaranteed fun for the entire family so come out and join your fellow parishioners. Attend one or both days!

  • August 7 @ St. Clare after the 4:00pm Mass
  • August 8 @ St. Thomas after the 11:15am Mass

  • Tents, tables, chairs will be provided
  • The grills will be cooking up some of your favorites along with side dishes and desserts
  • Each parishioner will receive 2 free drink tickets
  • Additional beer, soda, water will be available for purchase
  • DJ will provide a variety of music Saturday night at St. Clare
  • Live music will be provided Sunday afternoon at St. Thomas
  • A few special games will be available for kids and adults
What else you ask????
The inaugural St. Clare/St. Thomas Cow Pie Bingo raffle is now open. The winners will be decided on August 8 so get your tickets while they last. Tickets can be purchased online at the St. Clare or St. Thomas website. Go to the donate page and select the Cow Pie option. If you are not comfortable using technology send an email to:

Tickets will be $25 each and we will sell two sets of 200 tickets. If you are new to Cow Pie bingo, a grid of 200 squares is painted within a fenced in area. Each square is randomly assigned to a ticket holder for each of the two games. A ticket holder has a 1 in 200 chance of winning the grand prize.

(NOTE: If you buy a ticket from both St. Clare and St. Thomas you will be included in both games. )

If the cow pies directly on your square, you win $1000. The four touching squares win $250 each. (We will have a set of winners for St. Clare and for St. Thomas) All proceeds will be shared between the two parishes.

 Pig Raffle 
We are also bringing back our PIG RAFFLE. John Henrichs, the Henrichs Family and Henrichs Quality Meats & Show Pigs have generously donated a pig to raffle off.
Thank you!!!!!
Tickets are $5 a piece or 5 for $20 for a chance at 1/2 pig, fully processed. We will raffle off two winners. Please go to the St. Thomas or St. Clare website and click on the donate page. You will be able to electronically enter the raffle by selecting the "Pig Raffle" button. Just enter a few pieces of information if you are not registered and provide a credit/debit card or account number. It's that simple and completely safe. The system will let us know your name, the number of tickets you purchased and track your payment. No tickets will be distributed. We will write your name on the number of tickets you purchase and put them in the raffle bin. If you wish to enter the raffle but really don't feel comfortable using technology, send an email to
Drawing will be held on August 7 for the first 1/2 and August 8 for the second 1/2.
New Mass Protocols
Please review

The Archbishop announced his decision to remove all COVID restrictions that remained in place. He encouraged individual parishes to meet with their leadership and define the best approach for returning to "normal". Leadership from both St. Clare and St Thomas met to define a phased approach that will transition everyone into the changing protocols. Details are as follows:

  • June 5-6 Resume passing of the collection baskets

  • June 12-13 Resume presentation of the gifts

  • July 3-4 Return to distribution of communion beginning with the front rows

  • September Return to youth servers at Mass.

We respectfully ask for everyone's patience and prayers as we work to reimplement these practices over the coming weeks.

The Archdiocese released a new COVID Comeback matrix on May 20. Many changes. See below
This Weekend's Mass Worship Aid

We want to thank all our wonderful St. Thomas volunteers. The dedication and love you continually show for your parish is truly amazing.

This week we offer special thanks to those who cleaned and sanitized the church between each Mass since services resumed more than a year ago. These individuals devoted time and effort behind the scenes every week and we can't thank them enough.

Thank you:

Steve and Pat Koszuth
Fred and Rosie Chart
Bob Pedersen
Todd and Barb Johnson
Wayne and Gail Slotty
Pat Popp
Sandy Redman

Special thanks to Ron and Sue Anton for coordinating cleaning efforts each weekend, filling in as needed and so much more.

We also appreciate our "Holy Dusters" who clean the church Monday mornings.

Finally, we want to thank Jay Morrical, Sharon Mehring and Tom Moriva for their efforts. They sanitized the campus continually, ensured cleaning supplies were available and kept our campus beautiful.

We appreciate all of you very much! 
New Explore Waterford App

Have you ever wondered what was happening in Waterford. Now there is an app you can download that provides information on upcoming events and dates. The app is available and has information on upcoming River Rhythms dates and more.

You will also find information on the newly expanded Ten Club Park which is hosting Food & Fun on First Street from 4pm-8pm every Monday. The park will host a variety of food vendors, yard games, surprise entertainment and beer tent. Some featured vendors include:

  • Big O's Texas BBQ
  • Pop's Pizza
  • Bruno's
  • Kettle Cornucopia
  • Oatballs
  • Three Lil' Bakesters
  • Sweet Abilities

Beer tent sponsor
  • Waterford Lion's Club
  • Waterford Wolverine Shooting Team

Download the App now!
Thank you for graciously responding!
We're closing in on our budget shortfall at St. Clare because of your generous contributions. The decrease in offertory and stewardship contributions and event revenue we've experienced since the pandemic is turning around. Many have increased their regular financial stewardship offerings. Thank you! In addition, we've had $22,000 in contributions that have been specifically earmarked to 'balance the budget.' Thank you St. Clare parishioners and our parishioner friends at St. Thomas!

Things are returning to normal and we understand that the Bear Den has been busy with a good number of visitors after their opening on May 8th. As part of our ongoing efforts to support special needs and people with disabilities, Knight’s Council 8172 will be at the Bear Den in Waterford on June 12th between 11am & 2pm selling brats as a fund raiser for these worthy causes.

Come join us on June 12th in support of a great local zoo and have a brat to support members of our community. Thanks in advance for your support.

Knights Council 8172
We would like to highlight and thank a few of our loyal sponsors in each email.
St. Thomas and St Clare thanks you very much!
A complete list of all our sponsors can be found on our website. Please support them whenever possible
St. Thomas Aquinas and St. Clare of Assisi parishes
Waterford and Wind Lake, WI.