AMOS (A Mid-Iowa Organizing Strategy)

What is AMOS?  A Mid-Iowa Organizing strategy

AMOS is a non-partisan, grass roots community organization whose members are churches and nonprofit organizations.  In one-to-one conversations and small group meetings known as house meetings, we learn about the pressures, issues, and problems we face in our community. These issues are explored through in-depth research to develop possible solutions. AMOS then acts publicly, using the power of organized people to lead decision-makers to implement the best solution for all involved.  Currently there are seven member churches in Ankeny including OLIH, Ankeny First United Methodist Church, Ankeny Presbyterian Church, Ankeny United Church of Christ, Resurrection Lutheran, St. Anne’s Episcopal, and Ankeny Christian Church. To learn more about this organization see

Meets:  The OLIH core team meets the 3rd Monday of the month, usually in member’s homes.  

Contact:  Jan Brown  964-5527 or  Sara Doruska

AMOS-OLIH Needs and Services Assessment of Ankeny 2017




Catholic Daughters of America

The mission of Catholic Daughters of the Americas is to embrace the principle of faith working through love in the promotion of justice, equality and the advancement of human rights and human dignity for all. It is open to any Catholic woman (18 years or older) interested in engaging in creative and spiritual programs to help women develop their God-given talents in meaningful ways to influence the welfare of the Church and all people.  Meets: November-March first Saturday morning 9:30 am; April-October on the first Tuesday evening 6:30 pm; do not meet in January, July and August.  Meetings are 1½-2 hours.  Contact: Ruth Ward   Learn more

Upcoming Dates:

May 7 at 6:30 pm Program- Conover Garden Center

June 4 at 6:30 pm Program-Reception of New Members/Potluck


Family Promise

Each night in Polk County, hundreds of people are homeless; half of which are children. The impact of losing a home is traumatic, especially for children. The resulting instability creates insecurity, worry, low self-esteem, and difficulty focusing in school and studying.

Family Promise strives to create a safe, stable and nurturing environment for the children and to support the efforts of their parents in securing employment and housing.  OLIH is one of 13 area churches who provide shelter and nutritious meals for one week every three months.  During our host week, volunteers from the parish create a home-like atmosphere where guests can receive what they need: rest, hope, respect, confidence boosting and a sense of control in their lives.  Learn more:  Family Promise of Greater Des Moines  or check out this powerpoint.

A few weeks prior to our host week (next one is June 23-29, 2019), we post a volunteer sign-up board in the gathering space.  Below are a list of the areas where volunteers are needed:

Dinner Preparers: Dinner is a hot, well-balanced meal, usually prepared at the volunteer’s home.  The dinner preparers usually meet in the kitchen and have dinner ready to serve at 6pm. Milk and lemonade/juice are purchased ahead of time by the Family Promise supply coordinators. Cooking dinner is a good opportunity for church groups to get involved in helping.  For larger groups, we ask that you try to limit the number of servers/attendees.

Evening Hosts arrive in the kitchen/dining area around 6pm and stay until 8:30pm.  Hosts socialize and eat dinner with the guests.  Hosts often assist parents with children’s needs. Some activities might include board games, cards, arts/crafts, basketball, etc.

Overnight Hosts: Two hosts, usually one male and one female, spend the night at the church.  Overnight hosts are available in case of an emergency. Other responsibilities include turning off lights around 9-10pm, waking guests by 6am.  Overnight hosts are asked to stay from 8:30pm-6am. 

Breakfast Preparers: Breakfast on Saturday is relaxed since the guests do not leave for the center until 10am.   Therefore, breakfast preparers may choose to make something more substantial, such as bacon and eggs, or pancakes.

Laundry: Each host week, one or two volunteers wash and return the guests and overnight hosts` towels and sheets.

Van Drivers: Drivers are needed to transport guests from OLIH to the Family Promise Day Center in Des Moines each morning and then return them to OLIH each evening.  The Family Promise program provides a fifteen passenger van for transportation.

Please contact OLIH representatives Rob & Natalie Francis at 515.494.6913 if you have questions or would like additional information about the program at OLIH. 


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Knights of Columbus

The Knights of Columbus is an organization of Catholic men (18 years and older) based on the principles of charity, unity, fraternity and patriotism. The local Knights, Council 5038, serve others in the parish and beyond. For example, they raise money for individuals with developmental disabilities with their “Tootsie Roll Drive” in the fall, deliver beds to needy families in December and sponsor fish fry’s in Lent to support various organizations that ask for their help.  Meets: the first Monday of the month.  Contact: John Ledvina, Grand Knight  Learn more about the Knights of Columbus.  OLIH Knights of Columbus page    

LifeServe Blood Drive

Volunteers organize five blood drives per year at OLIH on Thursdays from 3:00-7:00 pm. Help is needed for set up, canteen and tear down. (Jul 16, Sep 26, Dec 5, 2019)  Contact: Daniel Ossian   979-5185  Learn more

Right to Life

Iowa Right to Life is the state’s largest pro-life organization. Its mission is to encompass within the protection of our laws all human life, born and unborn, at all stages of biological development from fertilization to natural death.

At OLIH we join with these efforts by sponsoring parish events, joining in the Life Chain, the March for Life and prayer vigils.  Learn more  Iowa Right to Life  and InnerVisions Health

Three Times In Modern History The Word "Person" Has Been Redefined:

1857: The U.S. Supreme Court declares that African Americans are not legal persons. They are the "property" of their owners.

1936: The German Supreme Court, the Reichsgericht, refuses to recognize Jews living in Germany as persons. Genocide becomes legal.

1973: The U.S. Supreme Court rules that the unborn are not persons in the legal sense; they have no civil or human rights. The unborn are the "property" of the mother, who can "choose" to abort them up to the day of delivery."  (Justice Henry Blackmon in Roe v. Wade)

Contact: Jackie Carey

Prayer Shawl Ministry

If you have experienced a miscarriage or still birth recently and would like to receive a prayer shawl and be prayed over please contact the parish office. This is offered through the Respect Life Ministry. God Bless You!


Stephen Ministry

Members of our parish, 18 years and older, can become Stephen Ministers after receiving special training to provide one-on-one Christian care to people in our congregation and community who are experiencing grief, loneliness, divorce, hospitalization, disability, job loss and many other life difficulties. Stephen Ministers listen, care, encourage and provide emotional and spiritual support to people who are facing a crisis or going through tough times. All care is free and confidential.  Meets: weekly with your care receiver, monthly ongoing supervision and continuing education.  Contact: Sr. Susan Widdel 

Monthly Prayer

Need Someone to PRAY for YOU or a LOVED ONE? Every second Sunday of the month, Stephen Ministers will be leading a short prayer/blessing (5-10 minutes) immediately after all Masses for those who would like an extra prayer/blessing for themselves or someone they know.

Stop over by the southeast corner of the church for a quick prayer or blessing from one of our Stephen Ministers. All are welcome!


St Vincent de Paul

A parish-based group of Catholic laypersons interested in helping those most in need become self-sufficient by meeting their basic needs and helping them forward through education and personal development. Some of the funds provided are raised through sales at the St. Vincent de Paul stores at 1426 6th Avenue, and 520 Army Post Road in Des Moines.  Meets: the 3rd Saturday of each month at 10:00 am, OLIH Room 9.  Contact:  Michelle Pagliai, 707-7403   Learn more National or Locally

The SVdP truck is available on the 1st and 3rd Saturdays of the month, 10:00 am-4:00 pm to receive donations.