Monday Memo, Nov. 18, 2013
Vol. 12, No. 14

Posted on by Most Rev. Gerald F. Kicanas











Mass for the victims of Typhoon Haiyan
Wednesday, Nov. 20, 6:30 p.m. at St. Augustine Cathedral, 192 S. Stone Ave.



Consider sending a donation to assist victims at


Catholic Relief Services hopes to help 100,000 families totaling 500,000 people. To date they have raised over six million dollars from private donations. There is a need to raise 20 million. A special collection was taken up this past weekend to assist in the recovery. Thanks to all who gave from the heart.


We already have seen the newspaper accounts and have watched the televised and online reports about the horrible destruction in the Philippines and Vietnam caused by super Typhoon Haiyan.


We are called to help those affected by nature’s destruction through our prayers and donations.  This Wednesday, I along with some of our priests, deacons and lay faithful will celebrate a liturgy to pray for those killed or harmed by this horrendous natural disaster.  As you may know, some of our priests come from the Philippines and Vietnam, and they have been especially moved to help.


We are holding a special at St. Augustine Cathedral, 192 S. Stone Ave., on Wednesday, Nov. 20 at 6:30 p.m. Music will be provided by Philippine and Vietnamese choirs, as well as the St. Augustine Choir.  I also have invited clergy and faithful from other denominations to attend and to participate in this Mass.


We will have a short video prepared by Father Virgilio “JoJo” Tabo playing in the vestibule of St. Augustine Cathedral, and we will have telling photos from the stricken areas on display as a reminder of the devastation that has taken place .


We also will be taking up a collection to send assistance to those in need through Catholic Relief Services.


I encourage you to come to this important liturgy if possible.  If you can’t make it to Mass, take time to pray for those who have been so severely affected and consider sending a donation to Catholic Relief Services typhoon aid.  While working on the Monday Memo, I found this prayer, prepared by the Lutheran Church in upstate New York that seems have just the right words:


Loving Lord, we come to you trusting in your mercy and knowing that your steadfast love endures forever. Look with mercy on those who have been harmed or displaced by this disaster. Grant them your strength to meet the days ahead. Allow those who are affected to experience your peace which passes all understanding and new hope in the resurrection. Move in those who are able to give aid, that we may be your hands and heart on the earth. Be with all who offer your assistance; may your Spirit uphold them as they face the challenges ahead. Give us the assurance of your presence even in this time so that we can cling to your promise of hope and life shown us through Jesus Christ, our

Savior and Lord,



image007Arizona Speaks
On Thursday, I will be participating in a very important event concerning immigration reform.  An assembly of people who have been working on this issue came together earlier this year and are hosting a three-city event in which key business, education, healthcare, religious, social service and other community leaders in each of these three cities will come forward to sign an open letter calling our congressional delegates to action.


The Assembly of Community Leaders call the event Arizona Speaks.  The three cities involved are Tucson, Phoenix and Yuma.  Here in Tucson, we are expecting about 175 community, civic, religious and business leaders to attend. They will be invited to sign a letter to our Arizona congressional delegation, President Obama, Sen. John Boehner and Sen. Harry Reid. To view the letter please go to:
Some of the local leaders who are attending include:  Dr. Amy  Beiter, president and chief executive officer of Carondelet, St. Mary’s Hospital; Paul Bonavia, chairman and chief executive officer at UniSource Energy Corporation and Tucson Electric Power Company; Jim Click, president of Jim Click Automotive and a local philanthropist; Rabbi Samuel Cohon  senior Rabbi of Temple Emanu-El; Marguerite “Peg” Harmon, chief executive officer of Catholic Community Services; Lee Lambert, Chancellor, Pima Community College, Lisa Lovallo, Cox Communication, Lea Marquez Peterson, president of the Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce; Tucson Mayor John Rothschild; H.T. Sanchez, superintendent of the Tucson Unified School District; Msgr. Raul Treviso, Vicar General, Diocese of Tucson, Pima County Supervisor Ramon Valadez, chairman of the Board of Supervisors; Roberto Villaseñor, Chief of the Tucson Police Department. I also will attend.


Immigration reform, the group says , “ is a moral, economic and civil societal imperative,” that can no longer be delayed.



Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz

New national Catholic leaders
As you know, I participated in the fall session of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) for most of last week.   I had earlier mentioned that during this meeting, a new President and Vice President would be elected to lead the USCCB, and that with the change of leadership, other national conference boards and committees also would be having a change in membership or leadership.


I will quote from the USCCB press release about the leadership election:
Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, Kentucky, was elected president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) during the bishops’ annual fall General Assembly, November 12, in Baltimore. Archbishop Kurtz has served as vice president of USCCB since 2010. Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo of Galveston-Houston was elected USCCB vice president.


Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo

Archbishop Kurtz and Cardinal DiNardo are elected to three-year terms and succeed Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York and Archbishop Kurtz, respectively. The new president and vice president’s terms begin at the conclusion of the General Assembly, November 14.
Archbishop Kurtz was elected president on the first ballot with 125 votes. Cardinal DiNardo was elected vice president on the third ballot by 147-87.


The president and vice president are elected by a simple majority from a slate of 10 nominees. If no president or vice president is chosen after the second round of voting, a third ballot is taken between only the top two vote getters on the second ballot.”


For more information about the elections, please visit


It has been a great joy and a deeply humbling experience to serve as the Chair of the Board of Catholic Relief Services (CRS) these past three years. CRS is greatly blessed to have a phenomenal president, Dr. Carolyn Woo, with an exemplary staff that do us proud all over the world. The Board is among the biggest fans of CRS and its life saving work.

As I complete my service on the Board. I feel grateful for having seen the Church at its best, caring for those in desperate need and helping people realize their potential as children of God. CRS deserves our prayers and support.


The Chair of the Board of CRS is a presidential appointment. Archbishop Paul S. Coakley, of the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City was appointed by Archbishop Kurtz to be the new chair of CRS. He is blessed to have this opportunity to be a special part of this great organization that represents us as Catholics from around the United States in an exemplary way. CRS provides humanitarian assistance to many.


To both Salpointe and Yuma Catholic High Schools. The headline in Saturday morning’s Arizona Daily Star said it all:  Salpointe 45, Liberty 14.  Our Lancers crushed Peoria Liberty at Salpointe in the  Division II state quarterfinal game.  Salpointe is holding steady with 12 wins, and if the Lancers can hold on for two more games, they will claim their first state football title.


On Saturday, our Yuma Catholic Shamrocks easily beat St. John’s  in the  Division V quarterfinal 42-7, earning their place in the semifinals for the fifth straight year.


Thanks Knights!
Yesterday, I celebrated Mass with the Benedictine Sisters of Perpetual Adoration at the Monastery and prayed in thanksgiving for the ongoing help from the various Knights of Columbus councils in their ministry to assist the monastery.


image016The Benedictine Monastery at 800 N. Country Club is an airy, beautiful structure built in 1940 in the Moorish Spanish style, and was designed by Roy Place.  The grounds feature many trees – oranges, pears, fig and even pecan – large oleanders and other shrubs that have been hearty over the decades and require maintenance.


“Throughout the year they come once a month to repair something on a property,” said Sister Ramona Varela, prioress. She said the work has included removing and replanting old shrubs, picking oranges from the monastery’s 24 trees.  Between March and May the Knights painted the exterior of the St. Joseph’s building on the campus, and also tiled the porch of the building. They also have painted many parts of the monastery grounds.


“Yearly we have what is called the Mass of Appreciation,” Sister said. “We have refreshments afterwards and we also invite Knights from Phoenix … we give them a tour of what has been done.”


I join the Sisters in thanking the Knights for their hard work to keep this lovely place beautiful. For more information about the Tucson Monastery and the Sisters, please visit:


Presbyteral Council
This morning we will hold our monthly Presbyteral Council Meeting at the Pastoral Center. Topics include:


A discussion of the Our Kids/Our Care program by Peg Harmon, president of Catholic Community Services, the Extraordinary Synod Survey; Annual Catholic Appeal Update; Advent preparation in the diocese; Arizona Speaks – Immigration Event on Nov. 21; screening and other matters concerning priests working here from Mexico; an update on Marist College; the status of our online and printed diocesan directory and Vicariate reports.


School Marketing
Tomorrow our School Marketing team is meeting to discuss progress made in our work to meet the diocesan goal of increasing Catholic school enrollment.  I am encouraged by the great deal of work that has been accomplished, especially over the last couple of months.  This progress includes: completion of a new schools’ brochure that all of our 26 schools will have on hand to give to parents interested in sending their children to Catholic School; progress on upgrading our school webpage; and the successful recording of a television ad by our Catholic Tuition Support Organization (CTSO).


The Diocese also was able to hire a person with the knowledge to assist schools and parents with navigating the application process for the new Empowerment Scholarship Accounts –a type of state funding that parents with children attending a failing or D graded public school can apply for to use to pay tuition in a Catholic school.  Francisco Moreno, who currently works at San Miguel High School, is a very welcome addition to our effort to increase school enrollment.


Poverty 24/6
I look forward Tuesday to attending a meeting of Poverty 24-6, an organization that works hard to help orphanages, senior homes, rehabilitation centers and deportee centers and individuals struggling to survive in these tough times. I serve on the Board of Directors for this group, which is run by volunteers dedicated to the mission of helping their neighbors”, and who use 100 percent of every dollar raised to go to those in need.


For more information about this wonderful organization, please visit


CTSO Board Meeting
Did you know that our Catholic Tuition Support Organization raised about $8 million last year to assist more than half of the students attending our Catholic schools with tuition costs?  Amazing!


image006I can say honestly that I do not know how some of our students would be able to come to our schools without CTSO.  Gracie Quiroz, the executive director, and her staff are fast approaching their busiest time of year – the time when many people make their end of year contributions enabling them to direct their tax liability directly to help students receive tuition help.


CTSO personnel are extremely well-versed in how people can use their tax liability to help others.  If you are looking for a year end contribution, please visit


There also are business and corporate contribution opportunities, and these dollars go straight to help students receive the benefit of a fine Catholic education.


My thanks to all of the CTSO Board members who are dedicated to finding and informing potential donors and businesses about the great work of our schools.


Directors and Pastoral Staff Meeting
This Thursday we will have our monthly Director and staff meeting.  Directors gather to discuss progress on diocesan and departmental goals, and often the group offers their insight and suggestions to enhance diocesan events or operations.  The meeting also gives me a chance to catch up with my very busy staff and discuss areas of importance to them.


Cemetery Board
On Friday we will hold another meeting of the Catholic Cemeteries Board. This meeting will focus on the long-term planning goals of the three cemeteries in the diocese.  I am looking forward to addressing these goals and seeing what our new Director Anthony Crespo and board have envisioned for the future.


Southwest Medical Aid


Southwest Medical Aid is a distributor of humanitarian medical supplies to improve the quality of life of children and families with medical, nutritional, and hygiene needs.


As it appears on their website: “We help our neighbors who are the innocent victims of poverty, natural disasters or political unrest.”


I will be attending a dinner with SMA – which is affiliated with the Salvatorians – and look forward to being with such a good group of people, working hard to find help for the neediest among us.

Jan Izlar, SDS, is the founder and director of the group.  She is retiring this year, and we all pray that someone with the same zeal and dedication will be found to take up her job. Kudos to Jan for her founding and nurturing of this wonderful organization.


Diocesan Pastoral Council
On Saturday, we will meet with DPC members to discuss the recent survey sent out to garner feedback in preparation for the Extraordinary Synod of 2015 on Marriage and Family. I look forward to hearing their thoughts. We will also reflect on the Diocesan goals and how the Council can help realize those goals.


I will confer the Sacrament of Confirmation on young people at Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish in Florence on Saturday.


Concluding the Year of Faith
I can hardly believe it, but we have already reached the end of The Year of Faith.
We will hold a Mass closing this 13-months of events and opportunities to “Awaken, Discover and Inspire,” on the Solemnity of Christ the King, Nov. 24.


If you didn’t read the New Vision in November, check out this link to see a wrap up story on how many of our parishes celebrated the Year of Faith.  The opportunities and offerings were delightful and as unique as our parishes.


I did  four presentations during the year on the Vatican II documents – at St. Cyril of Alexandria Parish in Tucson, at St. Andrew Parish in Sierra Vista, at St. George Parish in Apache Junction and at St. John Neumann Parish in Yuma.   The New Vision published faith journey stories written by members of our diocese in both English and Spanish each month during the Year of Faith and former New Vision Editor Bern Zovistoski wrote stories about each of our 11 vicariates that enlightened readers about parish histories of the faith across the Diocese.


Our Office of Pastoral Services has created resources to help parishes with their own closing liturgies for the Year of Faith.  I am thankful for the hard work of Sister Lois Paha and her staff throughout the year.  Thanks too to all the pastors and parishes for their hard work at renewing and enlivening the faith of their flocks.


I hope we all will continue to seek out ways to strengthen our faith. Our faith and our lives are beautifully entwined and we need to work to keep that embrace strong.


Please pray
For the soul of Father John E. Coady, S.V.D., who passed away Nov. 12 at the age of 85. He received his masters in Sociology at the Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C. and taught for two years at the St. Augustine Minor Seminary.


Father John served as a missionary in Accra and Mamprobi Ghana Africa from 1964-1974 completing the building of two churches and two schools. He worked in parishes in California from 1974-1975 and was accepted by Bishop Eldon Schuster into the Diocese of Great Falls-Billings in Montana in 1976. He was incardinated in 1977 and served for a combined 20 years as pastor for parishes in Malta, Chester and Glasgow, Montana.


In 1994 he retired and came to live in the Diocese of Tucson where he remained active serving as Chaplain at El Dorado Hospital and Tucson Medical Center spending over 14 years in hospital ministry. He loved assisting the Tucson and surrounding area pastors on weekends by covering Masses and services.


A funeral Mass will be celebrated on Thursday, Nov. 21 at St. Joseph Parish in Tucson. A Rosary will be said at 10:30 a.m. followed by Mass at 11 a.m., with internment following at Holy Hope Cemetery.


Please pray also for the comfort of Father’s sister, Mary Koll, and his other family members.

For the soul of Aida Baetriz Jardin, who died on Sunday, November 17th in Argentina following a serious illness.  She was the mother of Sister Gladys, our coordinator of Hispanic Ministry.  Her family are very grateful for your prayers.