We left Mount Michael approximately 7:15 on Saturday morning, Nov. 9. Our first stop and destination was St. Bonaventure in Columbus, Nebraska. St. Bon's has just recently been repainted and restored to its Franciscan flavor. It is nothing short of magnificent. We met cousins of mine there in the parking lot of St. Bon's, Paul and Joyce Dohmen. They were our hosts and tour guides. Almost for a lifetime have Paul and Joyce Dohmen been parishoners of this parish--St. Bon's. Both Paul and Joyce have done much for this parish over many, many years. It is located directly across the street from Columubs Scotus High School. Below are some photos of the renovation St. Bon's. Paul's expertise in woodworking can be noticed with the main crucifix and Joyce is the reader at the podium for the dedication when the Archbishop was there.
After a great tour of St. Bon's by Paul and Joyce, they took us to the museum there in Columbus where Paul has worked for a good number of years as well. The museum has a display of every town in Platte County. It gave my guests a great idea of what the little town of St. Bernard was like when it was in its heyday. St. Bernard's is where my mother was born and raised for most of her childhood until the family moved to Boone County. There is not much that remains at St. Ben's, but Paul Dohmen along with his brother George restored one of the little chapels that was in the corners of the cemetry years ago. St. Ben's has always held lots of memories for me as a little boy. It was part of my dream to be a Franciscan in that rural area of Nebraska. Below are some photos of the little chapel that Paul and George Dohmen refurbished. If you look closely at the last photo, you can see Paul and George inside the chapel. And then in the background part of the wall remains that surround St. Bernard's.
Perhaps the best Fransican stronghold of Nebraska is St. Francis of Assisi, in Humphrey, Nebraska. This place is absolutey incredible. We spent a good deal of time here and met another cousin of mine who has been in the parish for many years, Marilyn Eisenmenger. Below are some photos of St. Francis in Humphrey, Nebraska.
From there we headed towards my home town -- Albion. Although St. Michael's in Albion is not Franciscan, I am sure it was interesting for my guests to note that I have been with the Archangel Michael all my life -- first Albion and then Mount Michael.
Below are some photos of Albion's St. Michael's.
Then we headed north to the final destination of Franciscan Nebraska -- Raeville, Nebraska. Amy said that perhaps this was the most beautiful of all of them. I think it was because of it location -- literally in the middle of a corn field. Below are some photos from there.