On Father's Day weekend, Father David Ruppert will give his last Mass at St. Therese Catholic Church in Waynedale. And that last Mass on Sunday will end by Father Dave saying, "God Loves You and so do I." The congregation will then respond by saying, "We love you too Father."
As the parishioners like to look at it, Father Dave has been "promoted."
According to Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades, the new assignments effective June 21, included Fr. David Ruppert to be further serving a parish of 1500 families in South Bend.
On Sunday, June 12, after the 10am Mass a farewell reception was held for Father Dave. The line of hugs and good wishes were never ending as he said his goodbyes to a community of families.
"We hate to see him go!" was heard over and over again during the potluck luncheon.
When asked what he will remember of St. Therese his response was, "My special memories include my first school play here. It was the Wizard of Oz! and I played the part of the Mayor of Munchkinland," he said proudly as he held up a cake decorated with the Wizard of Oz characters.
Collecting friends was the pastor's hobby. He is now on a mission of collecting some new friends soon to be in the South Bend area. Fr. Dave's new parish, St. Anthony's de Padua, has a PK through 8th grade school with an enrollment three times the size of St. Therese Catholic School.
Fr. Lawrence Teteh, from Our Lady of Hungary Parish, South Bend, will be welcomed as the new pastor at Saint Therese.