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P.O.Box 499

St. Francis, SD 57572-0499

www.sfmission.org

POP IS THE DEVIL

May 16, 2013

Most of us have known the awful pain of a toothache. That grim experience, I think, helps us relate to those suffering from serious tooth decay. St. Francis Mission Among the Lakota has made a good start in saving teeth on Rosebud Reservation. We have done this through the services of many, many volunteers—especially the dental professionals—who spend a week at a time in our new, fully licensed dental clinic right here in St. Francis. We could not even have begun this much-needed humanitarian project without the great support of our friends. I include you among them. It deeply consoles me that so many of you have opened your hearts to those in dire need. C

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Here’s how generations of Lakota have dealt with their toothaches. They tough it out until the pain becomes unbearable. Then they go to the Indian Health Service dental department to have the tooth pulled. The understaffed IHS dental department is open only a few hours each day and lacks up-to-date equipment. There’s no way they can meet the tremendous needs of this population of 20,000.

Marty Jones is a Delta Dental hygienist and manager of the St. Francis Mission Dental Clinic.

Thanks to you and so many others, now we have Rosebud Dental Health Days. Last fall in our clinic we served 66 people in five days. This spring we served 53 people in four days. Some cases are emergencies. We run it like a regular dental clinic. First the patient sees a certified dental hygienist and our clinic manager, Marty Jones, a Lakota. Marty begins the patient exam with x-rays and medical histories and supporting documentation of the conditions in the mouth, while educating the patient about prevention strategies. The dentist takes over and does whatever is most urgent. Virtually all patients are scheduled for follow-up. Some patients, mostly children, have so many problems we need to make arrangements to transport them to Rapid City or Sioux Falls, several hours by car, where they can be put under general anesthetic and have several major procedures at one time. Forty percent of our patients are in this category, Marty tells me. Marty is an employee of Delta Dental of South Dakota and is here on a grant called Circle of Smiles. The grant provides for seven dental hygienists working in all corners of the state of south Dakota on 7 Reservations with their portable chairs. I invited Marty to set up her practice in our well-equipped clinic because she can do more here than on the road. (Over) (Cut or tear on the perforation and return this slip with your gift.) Dear Fr. Hatcher, I would like this gift of $_________ to support the vital work of the St. Francis Mission Dental Clinic.

 Check here if you prefer to be thanked by e-mail, saving postage.  Check here if you would like to receive Print your email address here: ____________________________ information about estate gifts.  Check here if you are interested in helping St. Francis Mission in a more substantial way. We will send you information about how you may earn a guaranteed income for life in our excellent charitable gift annuity program. Please make your check payable to St. Francis Mission Foundation. Your gifts are tax-deductible as prescribed by law. For credit card gifts, please use the back of this slip. All gifts from this mailing will be used to support this appeal and the work of St. Francis Mission. We respect your privacy and will not share your name with any other organization.


Young and old alike rely on KINI for announcements of funerals and wakes, very important here. They hear about upcoming classes preparing for baptism and marriage. They tuned dailyThe meditations in Thestay need is soforgreat. rate of tooth decay on Indian reservations is almost one hundred times both Lakota and English and, later, for greater than the rate of those who the live elsewhere. evening Rosary. This month we are airing a special series of talks centered on the spiritualOur goal is to have a week of dental health days with dentists each month. Marty will provide hygiene services exercises of St. Ignatius Loyola.

every Monday. Marty told me about seeing three

And everybody loves the comic skits created generations of dental health problems in one family. by our production manager Roger Crow Grandma, her grown daughter, and their daughter/ Eagle. Each skit is a take on a topic, such as granddaughter came in together. The four-year-old girl’s Halloween, recovery, church-going, or the teeth already had many cavities, the young mother had serious gum disease and some missing teeth, and the tribal powwow.

grandmother had only a few teeth left. This is typical,

Nowhere in America, I believe, is there Marty says. It’s worse now than ever because of soda pop. a radio station that serves its community “Pop is the devil,” Marty said. “Families and especially children need to understand what pop is doing to their better than KINI does. Virtually teeth.” everyone on Rosebud Reservation listens Since we’ve been broadcasting to our radio station. They play it all day Sunday Mass live from The dentists come from near and far. The dental school long for entertainment, information, and St. Charles Borromeo Church at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska, sends (above), attendance has grown inspiration. Evenwith more, KINI Marty Jones working a client in thebrings clinic. the students who are supervised by licensedsteadily. dentists. Many The staff of KINI FM whole community together, expressing dentists volunteer their services through the South (left to right): Mary Lee Fast and multiplying the caring of one person Dakota Dental Association. Their webHorse, site, Roger http://www. Crow Eagle, Jerod and Johnna Gueru. theirworks generous outreach to promote dental health on theMendoza, reservations. forsddental.org, another. Ourdescribes radio station a And we get dentists from continuing wonder. I am veryIllinois, proud particularly Dr. Jack Boarini and his two dentist sons who came up with the idea for the clinic a few years ago. They created our four-chair clinic with donated of our radio staff and you, dear friend, equipment. for making all this happen in one of the very places the land. Ourpoorest ongoing needinwith the dental clinic is providing transportation, food, and lodging for the

volunteers. also need thepeople essential dental supplies and instruments them to do More than everWe in these hard all times, on Rosebud Reservation are leaning onfortheir faith. St.their Francis work. Your gift will make it possible for them to give their time and expertise to promote dental Mission relies on the radio station to feed this people’s hunger for God and to lift up all things useful, good, health Reservation. gift station will help us doyou. this in a systematic way. I am grateful and true. on TheRosebud truth is that we’d haveYour no radio without I deeply appreciate your generous gift to for your generosity. This is a wonderful work we are doing, especially for the children. KINI, the Voice of St. Francis Mission. May God bless you. In the Risen Lord, Your Partner in Loving Service to the Lakota,

Fr. John Hatcher, SJ

President

Fr. John Hatcher, SJ President P.S.: The radio station is expensive to operate. But the good it does is priceless. Thank you!

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754 Perfecting

May 2013 SFM Stewardship Letter  
May 2013 SFM Stewardship Letter  

Stewardship Letter for Saint Francis Mission for May 2013

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