Monday Memo, Sept. 28, 2015. Vol. 13, No. 31

Posted on by Most Rev. Gerald F. Kicanas







Pope Francis in the U.S.
What a blessing it was to be in Washington, D.C. for Pope Francis’ historic first papal visit to the United States. You could feel the joy of the Gospel in our Holy Father and among the tens of thousands of Americans who lined the streets of our Nation’s Capital for a glimpse of him, even fleetingly, and who heard his message of love and compassion for all.



Pope Francis waving from the simple black Fiat car he rode in through Washington.

The Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle in Washington sparkles with marvelous mosaics and lush paintings of the four evangelists and companies of angels drawn together by a large cross behind the altar. The stunning interior enveloped a lone figure in simple white, wearing a wrinkled red stole who had arrived in a plain, black Fiat. Pope Francis spoke to the bishops of the United States, including myself.



His words, softly spoken but forcibly delivered in Italian, reminded bishops that they are to be above all shepherds who humbly extend their arms to embrace all. He said he had not come to tell bishops what to do, but simply offered some bits of advice.



My view of the Holy Father as he addressed me and my fellow U.S. bishops at the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle in Washington.

Pay attention to your priests, remind them of their call and responsibility to serve and not to be served. Give them an example of serving beyond what is expected, not judging or condemning but accompanying those they are privileged to serve. Support the priests, care for them that they might care for others even at cost to themselves.



He called bishops, beyond their differences, to stand united, respectful of each other, especially those who hold opposite views. Dialogue, share and listen, look for ways to move forward together.



Later that day, at a Mass outside the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception at the Catholic University of America, Pope Francis canonized St. Junipero Serra, the 18th-century Spanish missionary. In a particularly moving moment, the first Scripture reading was spoken in the Chochenyo language of the Ohlone people of Northern California, which Serra would have heard from the native people.



In the hallowed chambers of the United States Congress filled with the nation’s leaders, one man stood at the podium and spoke in halting but clear English, inviting members to a new way of serving. Dialogue, listen even to those you disagree with, keep faithful to your esteemed vocation to represent the people and seek the dignity and well being of all.



Pope Francis gives the homily at the canonization Mass for Junipero Serra, the 18th century Spanish missionary. An interesting note: the iron cross in front of the podium was provided by Georgetown University and historians believe it was used in the first Catholic Mass on English-speaking American soil.


He encouraged what is greatest about America, the land of the free and the home of the brave. He cited four remarkable Americans- Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King Jr., Dorothy Day and Thomas Merton. They represent what is best about America, liberty, equality, care for the littlest and weakest among us and the invitation to dialogue.



These four can show America and its leaders the way through the complex issues of the day like immigration, the preciousness of all human life, global inequality, violence and displacement of peoples, climate change, marriage and family life.



Uphold the freedom of all including adherence to one’s conscience, strive for equality and the elimination of discrimination, treat every human being as one who matters and engage in humble, respectful conversation to address differences. That will keep America great and a beacon among nations.


Before leaving Washington, the Pope passed on lunch with Congress members and instead met with homeless men and women and volunteers at a local Catholic Charities center.



In the august hall where the nations of the world gather, the United Nations in New York, speaking diverse languages, representing different cultures, this same singular figure spoke to the world. End war and the taking of innocent life, care for our common home, work to end the inequality that robs people of their dignity. The world of varied nations resides on one globe. We need to learn to live as one family.


His quiet, prayerful presence at the site of 9/11 moved everyone’s hearts as he met a stream of families who lost loved ones in the tragedy. Francis brought his focus and attention to each family member, taking time to hear their loss and to reflect his love and compassion.


Similarly in Harlem we experienced his love of people, especially children and his desire that every person be treated with dignity and respect. He takes time with each person he meets even fleetingly.




Finally, in Philadelphia, amid throngs of people from across the United States and countries near and far away, Francis called for a renewal of marriage and family life as God-given gifts. He urged all to stand by families especially those struggling, caught in the web of addictions, domestic violence or torn by strife. He exhorted couples to address their differences and continually renew their life-long commitment for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer until death.




Steff Koeneman, our Diocese’s Director of Communications, took this photo of Pope Francis at Our Lady Queen of Angels School in East Harlem, New York.

Pope Francis came to the United States not to lecture, to correct, to judge but to speak from the heart as a brother to his beloved sisters and brothers. He came as a gentle father who wanted to be heard, to offer his encouragement, to give an invitation to accompany one another and to create a culture of encounter in which we speak and listen with respect to one another, as bishops, as individuals, as couples, as nations.



Weary and worn after a grueling week that began in Cuba and ended in Philadelphia, Pope Francis left with so much for us to think and talk about. What a blessing this week has been and for me what a lesson in what it means pastor and shepherd. Perhaps it was the same for you.



Along with me in Washington was Steff Koeneman, Director of Communications for the Diocese, who assisted at the media centers in Washington, New York and Philadelphia.


I understand that a few parishioners from throughout our Diocese were able to make the trip east to see Pope Francis in one or more of the cities. Some of those who weren’t able to travel held Pope watch parties at their parishes or schools such as Corpus Christi Parish and St. Augustine Catholic High School in Tucson.



I encourage you to read the October issue of The New Vision newspaper and my Facebook page as well as The New Vision on Facebook and on Twitter @newvisiononline for coverage of this historical visit.



Knights and Ladies of the Holy Sepulchre
This past weekend, I attended the annual meeting for the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre in San Diego. You’ve probably seen our Knights and Ladies, in their white and black cloaks, at the front of the church at major Diocesan Masses. There was expected be more than 500 Knights and Ladies attending from around the Western Lieutenancy, including about 40 from the Tucson area.




On Friday, Sir William and Lady Karen McEwen were installed as the Western Lieutenancy Area Co-Councillors – Diocese of Tucson in place of Sir Ernest and Lady Kathleen Nedder who did such a wonderful job in their leadership of the Order. They will be missed for sure.The next day, Sir Greg Adolf, Lady Anne Dickson, Sir Charles Irwin and Sir Michael Marum were promoted to a higher rank at the Promotions and Memorial Mass. I made a presentation on the “Value and Importance of Pilgrimages”. Then on Sunday, Sister Lois Paha, O.P., and Deacon Ed Gomez were received into the Order at the Mass with Rite of Investiture. An exhibit at the gathering will feature the work being done by local Knights and Ladies to endow a scholarship in my name at Bethlehem University in the Holy Land. Furthermore, Tucson will host the regional meeting for the Equestrian Order in 2016.



Protection office audit
On Tuesday and Wednesday, the Diocese’s Office of Child, Adolescent and Adult Protection will be undergoing an on-site audit at the Bishop Moreno Pastoral Center. The auditors are from Stonebridge and they will be looking at how we are continuing to provide safe environments for children and vulnerable adults. Thomas Englert and Matt Frometa will be here for these several days. We welcome them.



Dr. Rosemary Celaya Alston and Rachel Guzman have been working very hard to prepare for this audit and we look forward to hearing the auditors’ observations on all of the efforts of our departments, parishes, schools and religious education programs. While they are here, I will have a chance to speak with them and they in turn will be speaking with members of our Review Board and staff as well as reviewing our records. They may also contact some parishes to see how they are providing education and screening their staffs and volunteers.



Great strides have been made in restoring trust but we can never let down our guard or become complacent. These on site audits are helpful in keeping us alert to continue these efforts.



Notre Dame Alliance for Catholic Education (ACE) Academies


In the Diocese of Tucson, the University of Notre Dame is engaged in two programs: ACE teachers and our two Notre Dame ACE Academies: St. John the Evangelist and Santa Cruz.



The ACE teachers are recent graduates from university who want to give two years serving in Catholic Schools with underserved student populations. Currently they are serving at St. Augustine Catholic and San Miguel high schools and St. John and Santa Cruz. It will be my honor, tomorrow, to bless the home in Tucson on the grounds of St. Augustine Catholic High School where these ACE teachers now live as well as enjoy a dinner at their new home.



The next day, I will attend the ND ACE Academies’ Board meeting with our Diocese Superintendent Sheri Dahl and members of their Board. The partnership with Notre Dame brings the expertise of Notre Dame to these two schools. Through the efforts of the University and that of our local pastors and principals these school programs have been enhanced significantly.



image006Annual Catholic Appeal
“The achievements of an organization are the results of the combined efforts of each individual.”

-Vince Lombardi



Often in the Monday Memo when we invoke the words of another person we tend to cite inspirational or transformative figures of the Catholic faith. Vince Lombardi, who grew up in a strict Catholic home, was clearly a transformational figure in the world of football and coaching; however, his words transcend the world of athletics and can be wonderful sources of inspiration as an individual or organization strives to reach a goal.


Upon returning from our nation’s capital, I was greeted with the happy news that the 2015 Annual Catholic Appeal has reached the $3.85 million goal in promised pledges. This is a milestone that is reached because of the combined efforts of the pastors and priests who promote and ask you to support the appeal, the parish lay leaders who answer their pastor’s call and agree to serve on a parish ACA committee and/or give lay witness talks, the parish staff who organize and submit each weeks gifts, the Catholic Foundation staff who administer the appeal, and most importantly of course, the donors who give generously of the gifts that God has bestowed on them.


Thousands of people came together to make the People of Faith, Hope & Charity campaign a success and that success will flow back into our community through education programs for our current and future priests and deacons, through formation ministries, through education programs for our Catholic school teachers and through the outreach programs of Catholic Community Services.


To date, 31 parishes have reached their individual goal (visit to see if your parish has reached its goal) and while the active solicitation phase of the 2015 Annual Catholic Appeal has come to a close, I do encourage those parishes not yet at goal to try to get a little closer. It’s never too late to give! The Catholic Foundation staff will continue to administer pledge collections right up until Dec. 31 and would be happy to assist anyone with making their 2015 Annual Catholic Appeal gift. Gifts or pledge payments can be made by calling 520-838-2504 or at Thank you.



Performance evaluations


Here at the Bishop Moreno Pastoral Center, we give yearly performance evaluations of all our employees. It is an important way for us to ensure we are all co-workers in the vineyard to the best of our abilities in serving the people, parishes, Catholic schools and ministries in our Diocese. It is a way to affirm the good work people do every day. I encourage those who work in our parishes and schools to evaluate your own colleagues, especially if you are not already doing so.



CTSO Board Appreciation Dinner
On Thursday, I will host a dinner at my residence with the board of our diocesan Catholic Tuition Support Organization, which does great work to ensure that every student who wishes to attend a Catholic school is not kept from doing so because of financial reasons. CTSO will be welcoming three new board members: Christina Ronstadt, Cathy Hutchens and Bill Patient.



I know our parents and children are grateful for the good work of Gracie Quiroz Marum and her staff for their tireless efforts in providing resources to help place children in our Catholic Schools.



On Friday evening, I will speak at a gathering in Scottsdale for Retrouvaille, a program for married Catholic couples. Retrouvaille is “an International community of disciples committed to the continued healing of their marriages and, empowered by the Holy Spirit, sharing their stories, talents and gifts to promote and spread the healing ministry of Retrouvaille,” according to the Retrouvaille of Southern Arizona.



Our local Retrouvaille’s chaplain is Rev. Paul Mandziuk, M.S. and the coordinators are Marge and Dave Davis and the International Coordinators are Albert and Bertha Fresquez and Father Jaime Hinojos is the International Chaplain.



Diocesan Pastoral Council
On Saturday morning, I will meet with the Diocesan Pastoral Council (DPC).


We will welcome Sister Irma Odabashian, C.S.J., representing religious, Wanda Leikem representing Cochise County from St. Patrick Parish in Bisbee, Manny Navarro representing Gila Pinal East from St. Helen Parish in Oracle and Alfred Ramirez representing Graham Greenlee from Holy Cross Parish in Morenci. We are still waiting for a representative from Pima East and Pinal West.



As always the meeting will begin with a faith sharing in which a member shares the highlights of how God has been working in their lives. We will then look at the state of the diocese and identify issues that the Council would like to focus on during the next year.



I am deeply grateful to these men and women from all around the Diocese that do such great work in offering their advice and counsel to me about issues important in our Diocese. I appreciate Sister Charlotte Ann Swift who serves as staff for the DPC


Vocation gathering
Later Saturday, I will attend a vocations gathering for our Who Will Fill These Shoes campaign. This gathering will be at Sts. Peter and Paul Parish Hall from 12:30 p.m.-2:30 p.m. Last year a number of men, some of whom entered the seminary, came to Who Will Fill These Shoes. It was a great success and a chance for these discerners to meet some of our priests and seminarians and to hear their vocation stories.



If you are thinking about the priesthood or you know someone who may be a good candidate to serve as a priest encourage them to join us at Sts. Peter and Paul.



Engaging Parents: Forming Family Faith Saturday
All parishes welcome and encouraged to attend. The registration deadline has been extended until this Wednesday to sign up for the Saturday conference “Engaging Parents: Forming Family Faith.”


While this conference will refresh and reinforce the theme for Strong Catholic Family parishes, the conference is open to leaders in faith formation from ALL parishes in the diocese.


Hosted by the Diocese of Tucson at Most Holy Trinity Parish and presented by the Center for Ministry Development, the conference from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. will share effective ways in which parish communities are engaging parents and helping families grow in faith together, a fitting goal in light of the upcoming Synod on the Family.



Pastor installation in Globe
On Sunday, I will install Father Arnold Aurillo as pastor of Holy Angels Parish in Globe, located about 100 miles north of Tucson. Father Aurillo previously served just six miles west of Globe as parochial vicar at Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament Parish in Miami.



Father Aurillo came to us from the Archdiocese of Palo in the Philippines in 2011. He has done an incredible job as administrator of Holy Angels bringing the community together and engaging people as good stewards. He has come to be well loved by the people and he is now ready to take on his responsibilities as pastor.



It will be a joy to present him to the community as their pastor. I know they will receive him with open arms.



New priest assignments
Last week, I introduced you to four new priests who will serve among us as missionaries. I have assigned them each to parishes. They are:



-Father Rolando Monteza Calderon from the Diocese of Chiclayo in Peru. His Bishop, Most Rev. Robert Provost, an Augustinian, is a good friend of mine and I am grateful for his willingness to send us a Spanish-speaking priest. Father Monteza was ordained in 2002 and has a degree in Philosophy and taught theology to the laity. Father Rolando will serve at Immaculate Conception Parish in Yuma.



-Father Thomas Mathuthoor, M.S.F.X., is a member of the community of Father Madhu George who is serving at Sts. Peter and Paul Parish in Tucson. Father Thomas was ordained in 1998 and has taught math and worked in a number of schools. He will serve at St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Yuma.


-Father Showri Raju Narra is a priest of the Diocese of Gunter in India. He was ordained in 2010. He has begun to learn some Spanish. Father Showri will serve at St. Augustine Cathedral in Tucson.



-Father Balaswamy Kommathoti is also a priest of the Diocese of Gunter. He was ordained in 1998 and has worked in a number of parishes. He has been learning Spanish and he also had an elementary course before coming here as a missionary. Father Balaswamy will serve at St. Margaret Mary Alacoque Parish in Tucson.




Cathedral Fiesta


It’s Fiesta time for some of our Diocesan parishes! St. Augustine Cathedral will hold its Fiesta this Saturday from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. There will be food for sale, games, entertainment and raffles. If you are looking for something to do with your family we hope you will consider coming to the Fiesta. It is always a lot of fun and makes for an enjoyable day. We are praying for picture perfect weather.



Marriage Mass
Renewal of Marriage Vows
Sunday, Oct. 11
St. Augustine Cathedral
This annual Mass is for couples celebrating 1st, 10th, 25th, 40th, 50th and longer. The liturgy is celebrated by me and includes wedding vow renewals.



Couples have to register to participate. Please contact Pat Gerardo in Pastoral Services at
520-838-2512 for registration information or email her at



Cathedral Concert Series
Wonderful Music in a Beautiful, Sacred Space is the theme of the 2015-2015 Cathedral Concert Series set for St. Augustine Cathedral under the direction of Carlos Zapien, St. Augustine Cathedral and Diocese of Tucson Director of Music.   All of the events are scheduled for Tuesday evenings at 6:30 p.m. The cost is Student Donation, $10, and General donation, $25. For tickets and other information contact St. Augustine Cathedral 520-623-6353 or



The first event is Tuesday, Oct. 13, Let Beauty Awake, with Jeremy Huw, Baritone and Paula Fan, Pianist. They will offer works by Finzi, Lauridses, Alwyn and Vaughn Williams.   The series continues with Duo Amabile, Nov. 10 featuring Steven Moeckel, violin and Paul Fan, Piano; On Wings of Song, Dec. 15 featuring Carlos Zapién, Tenor and Alexandr Pashkov, piano; Piano Recital, Jan. 19 featuring Claire Huangci, piano. The final event of the season is the Misa Criolla, Feb. 16 with the Cathedral and Community Chorus with Jessica Pierpont, Conductor.



Laudato Si
I will be offering diocesan presentations in four areas of the Diocese on Laudato Si. I hope you will join me for one of these presentations to become more informed about the Pope’s thoughts on the care of creation and of the human family. During his time here, the Holy Father often spoke of the need to care for our common home. The presentation schedule is:

Sunday, Oct. 18, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at St. Odilia’s Parish in Tucson

Sunday, Nov. 8 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at Our Lady of the Valley Parish in Green Valley.

Sunday, Dec. 6 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at St. Francis Assisi Parish in Yuma.

Sunday, Jan. 24, 2016 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at St. Anthony of Padua Parish in Casa Grande.




Catholic Foundation
In the Mood
Dinner and Big Band dance
Friday, Nov. 20


Savoy Opera House, Tucson


No host cocktails: 5 p.m.

Dinner: 5:30 p.m.image006
Dancing: 6:30 p.m.


Music performed live by the Big Band Express



Come remember the days when Tommy Dorsey, Benny Goodman, the Glenn Miller Orchestra and singers like Dinah Shore, Lena Horne, Doris Day


and Ella Fitzgerald rocked the Savoy.



Join the Catholic Foundation during this event to benefit Cathedral Square as we rock the Savoy, the Savoy Opera House in Tucson that is.



The Foundation will bring the music, the dance floor and great food to put you “In the Mood” for a lovely evening of dinner and dancing. Those attending are encouraged to wear 1940s attire with the chance of winning the “best dressed” award.



Tickets are $125 per person


Contact Clara Moreno at 520-838-2507 or email, or you can reserve your spot at



Proceeds benefit Cathedral Square.



Please pray:
-For Deacon Frank Lambert, who passed away recently. Services will be held Friday at 10 a.m. at Our Lady of the Valley Parish in Green Valley.


-For Deanna Sampson, wife of Deacon Dave Sampson, who died Sept 24. Services will be at Immaculate Conception Parish in Yuma with the wake service on Friday, Oct. 16 with the Rosary at 7 p.m. and Mass on Saturday, Oct. 17 at 10 a.m. with burial to follow. A reception will be held in St Anne’s Hall at IC on Saturday afternoon from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.


-For the repose of the soul of Peter Farrell, a 2015 graduate of Salpointe Catholic High School in Tucson, who was killed in a single car accident in Tucson on Saturday morning.
Peter was the son of John and Sharon Farrell and the brother of Kristina, a 2012 Salpointe Catholic graduate, school officials said. Peter was actively involved as a member of the cross country and lacrosse teams and was a Kairos retreat leader.

-For Father Virgilio “Jojo” Tabo, pastor at St. Christopher Parish in Marana, who has experiencing health issues that he may have a speedy recovery.