St. Anthony’s Retirement Community dedicated and blessed

Blessing of the chapel at St. Anthony’s Catholic Retirement Community.

Megan Marley

For everything there is a season…a time to gather stones, a time to build. With construction finished on all the buildings at St. Anthony’s Catholic Retirement Community, it is now time to celebrate.

Leadership, staff and residents of the Community gathered with clergy and Bishop Johnston on Oct. 25 to dedicate their buildings to the One who inspired the work.

“We’re excited—now fully opened and ready to experience what God has in store for us,” said Mark Ledom, Sr., project developer of St. Anthony’s with his son Matt Ledom.

St. Anthony’s Catholic Retirement Community, located on 68th Street near Research Medical Center in Kansas City, provides a continuum of care, offering 120 independent living units in a nine-story tower along with 30 assisted living units and 50 memory care units in single floor buildings. The structures feature large glass windows to allow lots of sunlight in, plus décor, amenities and intuitive design for seniors that gives the place a modern homey feel. The Community is privately owned and rents at market rate, with a month-to-month rental system and no buy-in.

Named after St. Anthony of Padua, Doctor of the Church and patron saint of the elderly, St. Anthony’s maintains a special relationship with the diocese and Catholic Charities of Kansas City-St. Joseph, helping maintain its Catholic identity via an advisory board of diocesan representatives, Catholic Charities personnel and clergy from nearby parishes. While not financially invested in the project, Catholic Charities receives 15 percent of net operating income to use in their missions.

After walking through and blessing each of the buildings with holy water, Bishop Johnston dedicated the chapel at St. Anthony’s and offered Mass. In his homily, Johnston acknowledged the hard work that went into the development.

“[When] we begin a project of love, especially for the glory of God—the Cross comes with it,” he said. “I just want to say I know that you have borne a cross through all of this, and I want to thank you for that. You’ve entered into suffering for this time—but it’s a suffering that bears fruit.”

He reflected on the first reading from Ecclesiastes, ‘For everything there is a season’.

“Ecclesiastes is a reflection on the world, almost ignoring God—what is life all about, if God is not in it?” said Johnston. “In the end, there’s not a lot of meaning: you live and you die, and what’s been done before is going to be done again; you work hard for a living you make a lot of money, you end up in the same place as someone who doesn’t have a lot of money, and give everything you earned to someone who comes after you. So, it’s all vanity.”

Johnston continued: “That’s all been changed because Jesus, the Son of God, the eternally begotten Son, has taken flesh, has entered into our history and he’s forever changed our history. He gives meaning to everything we do; he gives meaning to this project—this would not have happened without faith.”

The Catholic environment cultivated at St. Anthony’s is a natural extension of seeing God’s greater purpose in daily life and respecting human dignity at all ages.

“The laity are to imbue all their various spheres of life with the spirit of Christ…being a disciple of Jesus doesn’t mean I just talk about him to everyone I see, it involves just the way I treat people, the way I perform my tasks. I see this as a manifestation of that too,” he said.

St. Anthony’s is an opportunity for senior living in a faith-filled environment.

“I’m so grateful that St. Anthony’s is here in our community, in the heart of our community for so many of our residents who are here already, and more to come,” Johnston said.

For more information on St. Anthony’s Catholic Retirement Community, visit www.stanthonyskc.com.

Tuesday
October 27, 2020
The Diocese of Kansas City ~ St. Joseph