Monday Memo, Feb. 2, 2015. Vol 16, No. 4

Posted on by Most Rev. Gerald F. Kicanas







Yesterday, our diocese celebrated the jubilees of 23 religious – priests, sisters and brothers – working in our diocese.


The “biggest” jubilees were for Sister Mary Pierre Borboa, I.H.M.; Sister Mary Evelyn Soto, I.H.M.; Sister Barbara Donahue, S.F.C.C.; and Sister Therese Martin, S.F.C.C, all of whom are celebrating the milestone of 70 years in ministry. Sister Barbara and Sister Therese each have served in our diocese 38 years! Our other jubilarians were celebrating 60 years, 50 years and so on down to 25 years in religious life.


At Sunday’s Mass for religious celebrating jubilees there were four sisters celebrating 70 years in religious life. From left to right are Sister Mary Evelyn Soto, I.H.M., Sister Mary Pierre Borboa, I.H.M., Bishop Kicanas, Sister Barbara Donahue, S.F.C.C. and Sister Therese Martin, S.F.C.C. Photos by Steff Koeneman


Our celebration this year is even more poignant because this is the Year of Consecrated Life. Pope Francis declared that the “year” would be celebrated from the First Sunday of Advent 2014 (Nov. 30, 2014) to the World Day of Consecrated Life, February 2, 2016.


Our religious accomplish so much service in our diocese, from teaching to health care, to diocesan work to prison ministries. Their contributions are invaluable, and I am so pleased for their presence here.


If you get a chance, you might participate in the Year of Consecrated Religious by offering the following prayer


Brothern Jonathan Cord, F.S.C. at the lecturn during the Mass for religious.

Prayer for the Year of Consecrated Life

O God, throughout the ages you have called women and men to pursue lives of perfect charity through the evangelical counsels of poverty, chastity, and obedience. During this Year of Consecrated Life, we give you thanks for these courageous witnesses of Faith and models of inspiration. Their pursuit of holy lives teaches us to make a more perfect offer­ing of ourselves to you. Continue to enrich your Church by calling forth sons and daugh­ters who, having found the pearl of great price, treasure the Kingdom of Heaven above all things. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.



Our Vicar for Religious, Sr. Jeanne Bartholomeaux, S.C., is celebrating her Golden Jubilee. She has served in our diocese for 25 of those 50 years.



Kino Teens (Lourdes and Salpointe Catholic)






Letter from Pope Francis
I am so proud of the young people in the Kino Teens program at Lourdes and Salpointe.  The Kino Teens began with students at Lourdes Catholic School who have formed an alliance with the Kino Border Initiative under Father Sean Carroll, S.J., and Father Peter Neeley, S.J.  The group works to involve teens in work for migrants through hands-on experience on the border, workshops, immersion experiences and political advocacy.



MM-Feb-2-2015-final-3Students at Salpointe Catholic High School recently established a Kino Teens group as well.



The Nogales teens had written to the Holy Father about the situation along the Arizona-Nogales border, and also made a video about how people’s lives are being affected, and about the Kino Teens’ work.  The Holy Father answered back with a letter written on official stationery, and bearing his signature and the papal seal.  In his letter to the Kino Teens, Pope Francis encouraged the students to continue to remember others.



Last Friday, while on a visit to Lourdes School, I had the privilege of delivering that letter to the Kino Teens. What a thrill.



Just one more thought: Last week was national Catholic Schools Week. I can’t think of a better example of the role our Catholic faith and Catholic schools play in nurturing future leaders who have both a strong academic background and strong moral values, including compassion for others.



Charismatic Youth
Sunday afternoon I visited with the young people participating in the annual Charismatic Renewal for Youth.


It is gratifying to see so many young people embracing their faith, and the theatre at Pima Community College West Campus was filled with the Spirit. I could feel the joy of the young people there.



My thanks to Sister Gladys Echenique, O.P., our coordinator of Hispanic Minister and those who worked to plan this gathering.



Salpointe Dedication
As rain poured down, it was my privilege, along with Father William Harry, O.Carm., Provincial of the Carmelite Fathers who have staffed Salpointe since 1952, to bless the new facilities resulting from a $12 million dollar capital campaign. That campaign was directed by the school’s incredible President, Kay Sullivan.



The new additions include a magnificent student center, a library addition, a counseling center, a playing field and a marvelous new Chapel of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel.



Among the speakers at the event were Kay Sullivan, Salpointe President, Sr.Helen Timothy, the president of the Student Council, a teacher and a donor. Their remarks reflected on the rich history of Salpointe.



One could sense Lancer pride throughout the evening as people toured the new facilities and relished all that has taken place at Salpointe since its founding.



Who Will Fill These Shoes?
If you are a man from 16-35 and have ever thought about the priesthood, you are invited to attend the first gathering called “Who Will Fill These Shoes” The event will take place on Sunday, Feb.8 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the afternoon at Sts. Peter and Paul Parish on Campbell just north of Speedway Blvd. It will be an opportunity to learn more about priesthood and whether the Lord may be calling you to serve.



We have many priests in the diocese who have served over 50 years. One of their concerns is who will fill their shoes, who will follow them in caring for God’s people. Maybe you! Come and join us. You can view a video on YouTube or just go to and click on the priest’s shoes icon. and you can register online at




Photos by Steff Koeneman Just a few of the Board of Director members attending Saturday’s convocation.


The Lord invited some to come and see. Peter, Andrew, James and John accepted Christ’s invitation and they became his apostles. The Lord may be calling you.



Director Convocation
About 145 members of parish Boards of Directors braved the rain Saturday to attend the annual Directors’ Convocation held at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish in Tucson. To my delight, several priests from the far-away Yuma Vicariate –Fathers Javier Perez, Oscar Magallanes and Manuel Fragoso-Carranza and John Friel – made the journey to participate along with their parish Board members.



The day was packed with important information for the board members. Beginning with a presentation on board basics by our Moderator of the Curia, Msgr. Jeremiah McCarthy. Dr. Regina Haney, executive director of the Boards and Councils Department at the National Catholic Education Association, made a very interactive and thought provoking presentation on best practices for Board members. She explained how these board members can ask key questions to zero-in on the areas each needs to focus to help their parish meet financial and ministry goals.



Father Javier Perez, pastor of Immaculate Conception Parish in Yuma, and Father Viliulfo Valderrama, pastor at Our Lady of Fatima Parish in Tucson.


My thanks to Msgr. McCarthy, Danielle Eckhoff, executive assistant in the Office of Corporate Matters, and to Kathy Rhinehart, our chancellor, for their leadership in planning this successful convocation. Additional thanks to Sister Charlotte Anne Swift, O.P., Alex Neeley and Isela Celaya, who arrived early in the day to assist with set-up, registration and clean-up. Thanks also to Pastoral Center Directors Dr. Rosemary Celaya-Alston, John Shaheen and Steff Koeneman, as well as to Tom Arnold, our chief financial officer and Ann Marie King, our diocesan controller, who also were in attendance.


A bounty of thanks to St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish for the use of their facility.



Dr. Regina Haney during her presentation to the Convocation attendees.





Breakfast with the Bishop
I will be hosting another the Catholic Foundation’s “Breakfasts with the Bishop” this morning. I enjoy the celebration of Mass and the chance to meet people from different parts of our diocese. I am grateful to the staff of the Catholic Foundation who help host these gatherings.



Migration matters
On Tuesday I will celebrate Mass with some minors who migrated here to Tucson without their parents or guardians. They are temporarily housed in a place of safety and dignity until their fate and any legal processes to reunite them with their families have been completed.



Following Mass, I will meet with Carlos DeLeon, the Counsel from Guatemala to bless their new offices and to discuss migration. While this topic largely has disappeared from public attention, we cannot forget that migrants and their families still are struggling and suffering because of border issues.


Msgr. Jeremiah McCarthy at work.



We continue to work for comprehensive immigration reform, and for a change of heart and attitude towards those suffering worldwide because of politics, economics, drug and human trafficking and war.



Catholic Cemeteries
The Cemeteries Board of Directors will hold a breakfast and meeting at my residence on Thursday. The opportunity to meet more one-on-one with board members always is beneficial. I am sure Anthony Crespo will present critical information for discussion.



ACE Academies
Also on Thursday, I will be attending a regular meeting of the ACE Academies Board of Directors. As you might know, our diocese is in partnership with the Notre Dame Alliance for Catholic Education (ACE) program that works to bring education success and teachers into areas that historically have suffered a lack of academic progress.



For our ACE Academies – St. John the Evangelist, St. Ambrose, and Santa Cruz – this partnership has been extremely beneficial. In addition to improved academic achievement at the schools, there also have been programs to enhance the campuses. You might remember that last summer; Santa Cruz school was beautifully renovated, resulting in clean, well-lit and air-conditioned classrooms with smart boards. I will meet with Father Timothy R. Scully, C.S.C., the founder of ACE Academies, Christian Dallavis and Rodney Pierre Antoine, along with our Catholic Schools Superintendent, Sheri Dahl, earlier in the day.



Not only do we have our ACE Academies but we are privileged to have a number of ACE teachers serving in our schools. ACE teachers are those who volunteer to serve two years in an under resourced school in many dioceses across the country. We are blessed to have had ACE teachers for many years. What a gift they are!


Listening Sessions
This week: Saturday, Feb. 7 at St. Andrew Parish in Sierra Vista from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.


Sunday, Feb. 15 at St. Anthony of Padua Parish in Casa Grande, also from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

I have held two listening sessions in our diocese to gather suggestions and advice in response to our Holy Father’s desire to listen to our people on issues related to marriage and family life in preparation for the Ordinary Synod in Rome during October, 2015.


I invite you to the next session, which is on Saturday at St. Andrew Parish in Sierra Vista from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. I hope those of you living in the area, perhaps even including Wilcox, Sunsites, Pearce, Benson, St. David, Bisbee and Douglas, will consider attending to share your thoughts.


When I complete the listening sessions I will put together a report to be sent to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) in Washington and they, in turn, will submit the report to the Holy See for consideration at the Synod. The report will also help us in the diocese to see what more we can do to support marriage and family life. Already many helpful ideas have come forward. I will be writing a bishop’s column for The New Vision summarizing the input I receive.


One example that has surfaced came from the first meeting of the Board of Human Life and Dignity that advises Sr. Leonette, director. They recommended that the diocese look at how it could better help single parents with children which presents unique challenges. More to come.


Annual Catholic Appeal and St. Andrew Parish in Sierra Vista
Following the Listening Session, I will follow what has become a bit of tradition for the Catholic community at St. Andrew’s: celebration of Mass and the Annual Catholic Appeal dinner.


The dinner is sponsored by the Knights of Columbus to help raise money for the Annual Catholic Appeal. Father Greg Adolf began holding this event, where he gives witness to the importance of the Catholic Appeal by his own pledge to the campaign, and by his encouragement and support of his people to be generous in response to others’ needs.


Annual Catholic Appeal
Last Sunday was announcement of this year’s kick-off of the Annual Catholic Appeal. The theme this year is “People of Faith, Hope, and Charity”. I hope you have had a chance to see the video that describes how the funds of the Annual Catholic Appeal are used.


Your gift provides an opportunity to educate seminarians for service in our diocese. Your gift provides an opportunity to train deacons and lay ministers to assist our priests. Your gift provides an opportunity to promote the dignity of all human life. Your gift provides an opportunity to assist the work of the church in caring for the poor. Much good happens from your generosity.


As you know this past year the appeal exceeded its goal in monies collected. Because of that the appeal will also be able to help needy parishes with their desperate capital needs.


Thanks for your support.





Salpointe Catholic
On Friday, I was present for the dedication of a new facilities at Salpointe Catholic High School. The wonderful event celebrated the successful capital campaign and completion of much needed resource spaces for the students. For more information, please visit:



Please pray for
For the soul of Rafael Calderon, who passed away Jan. 26. He was the father of Victor Calderon, editor of The New Vision newspaper here in our diocese. He also is survived by his wife of 53 years, Cristina; daughter Cristina; a granddaughter; and brothers Benjamin and Jorge.

For healing of Father Richard Kingsley, retired pastor of Corpus Christi Parish, who will have surgery.



Feb. 8
First International Day of Prayer and Awareness Against Human Trafficking
The feast day of St. Josephine Bakhita, Feb. 8, has been designated as the first International Day of Prayer and Awareness against Human Trafficking. Last year, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committee on Migration designated such date as an annual day of prayer for survivors and victims of human trafficking. Later that year, the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace and the International Union of Superiors General at the Vatican, that the 2015 event will also be observed internationally.


The day is intended to raise awareness and to encourage reflection on the violence and injustice that affect the numerous victims of trafficking. The observance is being promoted for all dioceses, parishes and church groups.


More information is available at



USCCB’s Anti-Trafficking Program advocates for better protection for victims of human trafficking, provides training and technical assistance to service providers and educates the public on the prevalence of human trafficking. In 2013, USCCB launched the Amistad Movement to empower immigrants and local leaders to prevent human trafficking in their communities.


image028Cathedral Concert Series
Pianist Eric Zuber
Tuesday, Feb. 10
St. Augustine Cathedral
192 S. Stone Ave.
5:30 p.m.
Tickets: $25 for adults / $10 for students


The Cathedral Concert Series will hold its next concert featuring pianist Eric Zuber, winner of the 2013 Bosendorfer International Piano Competition. He will perform selections of Chopin. Information is available at: . Don’t miss it!