Lone Tree, Nichols, and Hills,  Iowa

Sts. Mary and Joseph

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Our clustered faith communities invite you to explore our joint website. 

And we hope it prompts you to visit and worship with us in person!

This notice was distributed at Masses on April 7 & 8 for the 13-parish planning area which includes the Sts. Mary and Joseph cluster churches.  Changes will take effect 7/1/18.

In September 2014 the Diocesan Planning Commission submitted a plan to the bishop dividing

all the parishes in the diocese into 26 Local Area Planning Groups. These planning groups were

tasked with coming up with innovative solutions to address the sharp decrease in the number

of active priests over the next decade as well as shifting demographics, especially in rural areas.

In consultation with Bishop Zinkula and having earlier received input from parishioners, the six

pastors in our planning group made a collective decision to recommend to the Priests’

Personnel Board the implementation of the following changes as of July 1, 2018:

·Columbus Junction will cluster with Muscatine

·West Branch will cluster with Wilton

·West Liberty will cluster with St. Patrick Parish in Iowa City. In addition, West Liberty will

reduce their Mass schedule to one Spanish Mass and one English Mass

·Cluster of Riverside, Richmond, and Wellman will reduce their Mass schedule to three


·Cluster of Hills, Lone Tree, and Nichols will reduce their Mass schedule to three Masses

·Washington has already reduced their Mass schedule to three Masses.

This was done in the spirit of “responding” in a well-thought-out manner to the present and

anticipated future challenges, as opposed to “reacting” in haste as they become a reality.

In formulating our decision, we had two primary goals:

1. To share the burden of sacrifice as equally as possible

2. To strategically position our parishes in a way that will keep them all viable and open

for the foreseeable future.

Bishop Zinkula stated, “I very much appreciate the collaboration and efforts of this local

planning group. I was extremely impressed by how well they worked together on the plan for

their area. They are a witness to all of us of what it means to be part of a local church, in our

case the Diocese of Davenport, and not simply single, isolated parishes.”

Signed by:

Fr. Bernie Weir, Fr. Michael Spiekermeier, Fr. David Brownfield, PhD., Fr. Joseph Sia, Fr. Greg

Steckel, Fr. Troy Richmond

The Christ Our Life Conference will be held again this year on September 29 and 30th in Des Moines at the Wells Fargo Arena.  Following are a couple of links to promos that show some of the speakers who will be attending.  For more information log onto the web site ChristOurLifeIowa.com.  You can purchase tickets on this web site and see all the information about the wonderful speakers who will be there and the agenda.

If you have any questions you can contact Sue Waterman at 319-400-5882 or [email protected]

Christ Our Life 2 min video


Christ Our Life 14min Video



Click here to be taken to our page about the local Catholic Worker House in Iowa City.


         St. Joseph Hills           

The Church of St. Mary Nichols            

        St. Mary Lone Tree