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The Fr. Buttrick Years

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1996–2008

Fr. Dean Buttrick was pastor of St. Anthony from 1996-2008.

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Fr. Dean Buttrick Appointed Pastor

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1996

photo 1It wasn’t long after Father Dean Buttrick replaced Father Schoone in September 1996, that the people of the parish realized that there was something unique and special about their new pastor. Father Dean had a calming comforting demeanor which was conducive to not only prayer, but also spiritual, emotional, and yes, even physical healing (as he would say, “by our Lord Jesus”). Fr. Dean was kind and gentle to everyone. In his twelve years as pastor, Fr. Dean demonstrated Christ-like service and was able to develop a true community spirit among the parishioners.

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The Spirit Seekers

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1998

ss34A group of parishioners, with varying degrees of musical background, asked Father Dean in 1998 if they could lead the parish in prayer by offering a contemporary music setting. They called themselves Spirit Seekers, a name reflecting the scripture passage, “Seek, and you will find.”

Among the early members of the group were two guitarists, Michael Kraft and Darryl Helenius; six singers and cantors, including Barb Belch, Katy Dorin, Cheryl Liebaert, Jane Moe and Brenda Wiisanen. Today Tara Brinker also sings with the group. Each member has a genuine love of music and enjoys using the talent God gave them to inspire others at Mass.

The Spirit Seekers produced a CD entitled “Spirit Seekers’ Christmas” in 2005. The recording was a major undertaking, as they had to obtain royalty rights to the songs. The album was a compilation of their extremely popular Christmas concert songs the group would perform each year for residents of nursing homes and at other events outside the church.

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Parish Develops Y2K Plan

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1999

Y2K.logo.smIn 1999, the Parish Council established a plan in which they were going to call elderly who lived alone if the power went out. The parish would also have products on hand if there were some glitches. However, when the big day came, when the clock ticked January 1, 2000, no power outages occurred. Locally, Superior Power and Electric, as well as other companies on the national level, did a fantastic job reprogramming their software.

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Souper Bowl of Caring

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2000

The youth of the parish took up a special collection on Super Bowl Sunday in 2000 called Souper Bowl of Caring. Parishioners were asked to donate $1.00 into the soup pot as they left Mass. The donations were given to a local soup kitchen. This collection was done for a number of years.

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All Allouez Reunion Held at Belgium Club

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2000

In 2000, hundreds turned out at the Belgain Club in Superior’s Allouez neighborhood (many of whom were former parishioners of St. Anthony) to remember the place where they grew up, to see old friends and meet new ones. It was the neighborhood’s first reunion.

The memories flowed as yellowed newspaper clippings and dog-eared photographs were passed around. Conversation and laughter mingled across the old social club, created by 31 Belgians in 1912. The club was the heart of the Allouez community. Walls of old photographs and old class pictures from St. Anthony School sparked memories. “You forget so many of the people you knew, the people you went to school with,” said Bob LaPorte. He grew up in ALlouez from the late ’40s to the early 60’s.

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Sanctuary of Church Receives Makeover

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2000-2001

The sanctuary of the church was remodeled at a cost of $18,962 ($24,585 in today’s dollars). The communion rails around the sanctuary were eliminated, the baldacchino canopy over the altar was taken down, a cross made from the material of the communion rail was supended over the altar replacing the canopy, the tabernacle was moved to the right side of the altar and was set in a niche that was created in the brick wall with lighting inside the top, the three-tiered altar platform (steps) was removed, and the altar was cut down to a serviceable size with the remaining granite pieces used for the ambo base and the presider’s chair. The wood of the chair seat and back were taken from the pews.

Blueprints of the wall were examined as to the best place where the niche would be located. However, the blueprints did not show the air exchange duct work. After a 4×9 area of bricks were taken out and the work crew began cutting into the wall, they were unable to continue, and had to patch up the wall. To this day, one can still see that unfortunate surprise.

The granite chair and ambo, thus, complemented the design elements of the altar and tabernacle providing an atmosphere of perpetual splendor and reverence in the sanctuary. Granite construction attests to the symbolic importance of these traditional furnishings, calling to mind the earliest altars which were also built of stone.

The insurance company recommended the removal of the three tiered (steps) altar platform located in the sanctuary based on the claims history of recent accidents. Among them was Sister Ardelle who fell backwards and hit her head on the tabernacle stand. Also, Bea Jubenville fell one year while helping put up Christmas decorations. Visiting priests who offered Mass also had difficulty going up and down steps. Another reason for the changes according to Father Dean Buttrick, at the time, was “to make the altar area more open to the participants so that they have a closer feeling in the celebration of the Mass.”

Other changes included: A new sound system, and a freestanding oak & fabric panel with a visual aid screen incorporated into the framework behind the altar in front of the doors to the sacristy.

Carl Anderson and others volunteered their time and labor to remodel the choir area. The old platform was torn out, and a new platform with everything on one level was installed with wiring for sound and electricity. Carpet was also laid down. Moveable mauve colored chairs with kneelers were also purchased. Prior to this were risers with stationary pews.

New parking spaces were added in front of the church out toward 2nd Street when the City of Superior widened the avenue. The city supplied the labor and equipment with the parish paying $2,815.50 for materials. Two handicap parking spaces were also added in front of church increasing the total number to four. The parking lot across the street was graded and refurbished.

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