February 26, 2014 - When Our Church Divine Mercy in Davisburg closed last June, parishioners faced the end of their faith community.
The Rev. Robert Ytsen celebrates Mass with Divine Mercy Catholic Community at Colombiere. Photo provided (click for larger version)
"The community was saddened to disband," said church member Carol Compagnoni.
The Humphreys family were going to church in Highland. But then they learned there was another option.
Colombiere Conference and Retreat Center, 9075 Big Lake Road in Springfield Township, offered to let them worship there.
"It is with grateful hearts that we thank the priests at Colombiere Center for taking us under their wings," said Nancy Humphreys. "We are blessed to be able to celebrate Mass with them each Sunday morning at 9 a.m. and want to welcome all to join us in our celebration."
Her family decided to stay with Divine Mercy Catholic Community after a vote.
"I didn't think they would want to go to a 9 a.m. Mass, but they did," she said. "It works out really well. We are also very thankful for the Arch Diocese of Detroit for allowing us to continue meeting as a community of faith."
"It's fabulous, how worshipers living in three different school districts can come together," Compagnoni said. "Our hearts were broken when we lost the parish. This helps fill the need."
The people in the community like to be together in worship, and continue to work hard to serve the community, said Fr. John Libens at Colombiere.
"It's great to worship with them," Libens said.
About 130 worshipers donate over $1,000 a month to Colombiere and Neighbor to Neighbor, organize activities for youth, and set up a Giving Tree during Christmas for families in need through Lighthouse North, Humphreys said.
"Now we're working on Easter baskets," she said.
The community fills a niche, allowing them to maintain their roots in the community and focus on helping others, she said.
"It's very rewarding," Compagnoni said.
"There's a joy in the community – we're there because we want to be," Humphreys said.
Divine Mercy's Knights of Columbus also continues its community service, Compagnoni said.
"We feel at home," she said. "We plan to continue to build connections and keep the ball rolling."
"The church is people – this verifies that fact," Libens said.
"We've had Mass in so many different communities in Davisburg. Now we can worship in this beautiful chapel," Compagnoni said. "We're very blessed."
For more information, call 248-620-2534.
Phil is editor for The Clarkston News. He is a veteran of the first Iraq war, having served in the U.S. Army.