Monday Memo, Jan. 23, 2017. Vol. 15, No. 3.

Posted on by Most Rev. Gerald F. Kicanas

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image001All life matters . . .
Last week, the “lead” article in the Memo was about our continued hopes for comprehensive immigration reform.


While people can and do separate life matters under different names: Pro-life, right to life, human rights, life and liberty, the Church tends to view all of these with the same focus.  Life matters. All life must be protected and respected.  A refugee leaving his or her homeland and putting himself or herself at the mercy of war, nature and other humans is a human being looking to preserve life; an immigrant crossing a border to seek life with better chance of finding work and dignity is seeking the right to life; and of course, those working to preserve the lives of the yet unborn are people working to preserve the tiniest and most vulnerable of human lives.



Photos by Steff Koeneman — A marcher holds up one of many signs seen during the Annual March for Life. About 1,000 people braved the cold and wing during this year’s March.

On Saturday, about 1,000 people gathered for Mass at St. Augustine Cathedral despite threatening weather including rain and strong winds. After Mass, they participated in the Annual Tucson March for Life, an event that has taken place every year since about 1993.  How wonderful it was to see so many people and especially so many young people peacefully marching along the route between St. Augustine Cathedral and Holy Hope Cemetery, proudly and devotedly proclaiming our Catholic belief in the rights of all beings to life, especially those who cannot yet defend their own right to life.


Below is an intercessory prayer for protection of life from conception to natural death.  This and other prayers, blessings and information can be found on the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) webpage at:


For a growing love of each human person
from conception to natural death;
We pray to the Lord:
That the life of every human person,
from conception to natural death,
might be enshrined and protected in our laws;
We pray to the Lord:

For a growing love of God’s little ones,
in the womb, in the nursing home or at death’s door:
That we might love with the love of Jesus;
We pray to the Lord:


I encourage you to participate in this program titled 9 Days for Life, a program of prayer and action initiated by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops which began on January 21 and concludes on January 29.


Asian New Year
Congratulations to all those celebrating the Asian New Year. The Year 2017 recognizes the Year of the Rooster.


The  New Year is a favorite celebration of the parish family of Our Lady of LaVang.  They begin the new year with Mass at Our Lady of La Vang on Tucson Blvd. which I am privileged to celebrate this year on January 29 at 10:00. Then the community brings all the traditional foods and party plans, plus the long dancing dragon to begin a new year.


I so enjoy the Mass, the festivities and all the sights and sounds of the event. Plan to join our Vietnamese community. You will enjoy it very much.


To Father John Allt, who recently retired as Pastor of St. Rita in the Desert Catholic Church.  Father Allt has a long history here in the Diocese beginning with his attendance as a student at Immaculate Conception School in Yuma as an elementary school student. Allt went from IC to the minor Seminary at Regina Cleri in Tucson before proceeding on to St. John’s Seminary in Camarillo, Calif and then to St. John’s School of Theology from 1969 to 1973.  He was ordained on May 6, 1973.  He also later attended the Weston School of Theology, Harvard Divinity School in 1994.


Father Allt began his ministry at St. Anthony Parish in Casa Grande as an associate pastor, from 1973 to 1976, then on to Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament in Miami from 1976 to 1984.  He was Chancellor for the Diocese from 1984 to 1993, then Pastor of St. Joseph Parish in Tucson from 1994 to June 30, 2008, before serving as Pastor of St. Rita Parish from July 1,2008 until Jan. 20 of this year.


Congratulations also to Father Martin Martinez who will become the Pastor at St. Rita.  You may remember that Father Martin had been Pastor of Sacred Heart Parish in Nogales, Ariz., and most recently had been on sabbatical.


Presbyteral Council
This morning our Vicariate representatives will meet to discuss: the upcoming 2017 Annual Catholic Appeal; Installation/Ordination Report; upcoming Parish Board of Directors Convocation; diocesan Lenten theme and other Lenten activities; discussion on stipends/meals policies; ongoing Biometrics program; a report on Haiti Collections at the 2016 Chrism Mass and the second collection in November; and Vicariate Reports. The Diocesan Consultors will also meet over lunch during the Presbyteral Council meeting to discuss continued plans and financing for Cathedral Square.


Week of Prayer for Christian Unity
For more information visit:
I will be attending and preaching at the Christian Unity event at Streams in the Desert Lutheran Church, 5360 E Pima St.  The Week for Prayers for Christian Unity is usually celebrated between January 18 and Jan. 25. The theme for this year is “Reconciliation – the love of Christ compels  us”.


I read online that “it was Pope Francis’ 2013 Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium (“The Joy of the Gospel”) that provided the theme for this year, when it used the quote: “The Love of Christ Compels Us” from the second letter of Corinthians, verse 5:14.


2017 is the 500th anniversary of Luther’s reformation and so this year’s prayer of Christian Unity will reflect on the hope and desire to heal the rifts that have taken place in Christ’s church over the centuries and to strengthen our resolve to be one as Christ intended. There is much “healing of memories” that will need to take place since much harm has occurred in the division of the church so we will be praying for reconciliation.


We are fortunate here in Arizona to have very good dialogue with many other denominations.  The understanding between religions broadens understanding among faiths and increases the harmony, or unity, between people.


Newly-Ordained Mentoring program
Ongoing education and time for reflection is very important to the ministries of all priests especially those ordained five years or less.


Our diocese offers this program to our newly-ordained priests regularly to work with them in the early part of their priesthood.  The next program takes place Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday of this week and it is robust with many opportunities for learning and prayer for our priests.  This session includes  a discussion on Collaboration with Co-Workers in Ministry; a panel discussion on working with the Diaconate including Deacons Rick Valencia, our Vicar for Deacons and fellow Deacons Tom Campbell, Charles Gallegos, Ken Moreland and Fran Sherlock; a panel discussion on ministering the sacraments pastorally and Canonically


There also will be a discussion on working collaboratively with Religious including Sister Jeanne Bartholomeaux, Sister Irma Odabashian C.S.J., Sister Gerry Brady, Sister Barbara Monsegur, CFMM and then a panel discussion on serving with Laity that will include Joe Perdreauville, Assistant Director of Pastoral Services, Julie Espinoza, Mark DeGrofft and Angie Cuevas.


The program concludes Thursday with a Mass celebrated by me with Father Jorge Farias preaching and then a Review of Ministries such as Movimiento Familiar Cristiano – Sergio and Rosalba Cardona; Marriage Encounter – John and Patty Jowell and Steve McCarville; Retrouville – Albert and Bertha Fresquez and Catholic Charismatic Movement – Gloria Roberts.


Mass for the Marian Movement
Members of the Marian Movement will gather for a Mass at Our Lady’s Chapel.  Members of various groups dedicated to the veneration of the Blessed Virgin Mary include many people across our diocese and I am pleased that they can come together and pray in the beauty of Our Lady’s Chapel.


Catholic Foundation
Members of our Catholic Foundation Board will be meeting Friday. This dedicated group of hard-working members is working on plans for the May 5, 2017 Gala Dinner, as well as examining ways to increase stewardship and support of the Catholic Foundation. I am sure members also will be discussing the upcoming launch of the 2017 Annual Catholic Appeal.


Mass of Installation
It will be my joy to celebrate a Mass of Installation for Father Samuel Jandeh, V.C., as pastor of St. Francis Assisi Parish in Superior.  Superior is a small community located in the copper basin area of Arizona. Superior also is near the  98-mile Apache Trail along state Highway 88,  and that three lakes – Canyon, Apache, and Roosevelt and Saguaro lakes – created by dams on the Salt River. offer beautiful views for nature lovers.  To learn more about the Trail you can visit:


Superior, like so many of our parish communities, is tightly connected to mining and is close to the Magma Copper Company Mine, the state’s largest underground mine; and also the Boyce Thompson Southwestern Arboretum, with more than 10,000 desert plants. The Chamber of Commerce web page also reports that “Superior has identified three historic districts and the Superior Historical Society opened the home of Bob Jones (Arizona’s sixth governor) as a museum.”



From left to right: Rev. Lowell Almen, Lutheran theologian, Bishop Steve Talmage, Lutheran Bishop of the Grand Canyon Synod, Bishop Gerald Kicanas and Father John Crossin, Catholic theologian.

Lutheran/Catholic Prayer
On Saturday about 75 people came together to learn and pray as we commemorated the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. Two highly respected scholars: Rev. Lowell Almen representing the Lutheran tradition and Rev. John Crossin representing the Catholic tradition reflected on two recent momentous documents jointly signed by the Evangelical Lutheran Church and the Roman Catholic Church: the “Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification” and the “Declaration on the Way: Church, Ministry and Eucharist.” These milestones in the Lutheran/ Catholic dialogue represent years of hard work and prayer seeking to move us together. It was a joy to participate in the prayer service along with Bishop Steve Talmage, Lutheran Bishop of the Grand Canyon Synod. A similar ecumenical service commemorating the 500 year anniversary took place with Bishop Joseph Pepe and Bishop Talmage in Las Vegas and one will take place with Bishop Thomas Olmsted and Bishop Talmage next week in Phoenix.


My thanks to Rev. Steve Springer, Lutheran pastor and Loretta Tracy, our diocesan Liaison for Ecumenical and Interreligious Dialogue, who planned the event.


Diocesan Finance Council
Will meet on Tuesday of this week at the Diocesan Archives at 7:30 am. Two new members have joined the DFC:  Roberto Ruiz and Omar Mireles. I am grateful to Humberto Lopez who will be leaving the council after having served on this council for many years and whose guidance and advice have meant a lot to the work of the Council. Similarly, Ray Bargull is leaving the Council after moving to Florida. He will be missed.


This council is mandated by Canon Law and provides wise advice to me on all matters pertaining to the finances of the diocese.


Diocesan Pastoral Council
Will meet on Saturday. This council provides guidance on pastoral issues facing our diocese. Members represent each of the Vicariates from around the diocese so each brings the concerns of their region to our gatherings and discussions.


I have always been grateful for their advice and the seriousness with which they take their work.


Family Matters
Catholic Community Services Dinner
This annual dinner recognizes families supporting Catholic Community Services as well as families served by CCS. This year they will honor Pat and Mary Lou Lopez, who have contributed so much to CCS and to our Diocese. They have been strong supporters of our Catholic Schools and have served on Boards to assist CCS and our Diocese.


The Lopez family has championed organizations such as Arts for All, Reachout Women’s Center, Tu Nidito, Catholic Tuition Support Organization, Catholic Foundation for the Diocese of Tucson, Salpointe Catholic High School Board and its foundation and many other nonprofits.”


Also being honored are Pedro and Rosario Morales and Moriah Muñoz. CCS is recognizing Pedro and Rosario, “who were both born deaf in Mexico, and who have overcome obstacles ranging from poverty, language barriers and lack of education to loss of family”, and that the couple today are U.S. Citizens.


Ms. Munoz is recognized for taking her own experiences from living in foster and group homes and overcoming addiction to raise her daughter and who now “encourages other young mothers to seek CCS support to change their lives.”



Cathedral Concert Series
Tomorrow, Tuesday, Jan. 24
St. Augustine Cathedral
7 p.m.

Organ Recital by Douglas Leightenheimer

For ticket information contact 623-6351.

If you haven’t yet attended a concert in Our Lady’s Chapel it is acoustically a magnificent setting for concerts like this.


Twilight Evening of Prayer for Women discerning religious life
Thursday, Jan. 26
6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Join with other women considering the possibility of religious life. The evening includes a light dinner and time for group and personal prayer.  For more information, contact Sister Jeanne Bartholomeaux, S.C., Vicar for Religious, at  or call 520-838-2524


Anza Trek
Catholic Scouting
Saturday, January 28, 2017
Tumacacori National Historical Park
Registration required:

A retreat hosted by the Diocesan Catholic Committee on Scouting which represents all involved in scouting -Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts and American Heritage Girls. Spend the day hiking the Historic Trail reflecting on and learning about our faith. Scouts will be picking up trash along the trail as a service project. The trek will finish at the mission at Tumacacori.


Mass will be celebrated in the late afternoon shadows of the Mission.


Cost: 15.00 per scout/person – T-shirts available for $12 each. For more information please Contact Pam Xeele at (520-668-4882);


All are welcome to attend, families, youth groups, and of course Scouting troops, crews, packs and dens – cost is $15 per person.


A Shepherd guides his Flock
St. Cyril of Alexandria Parish
4725 E. Pima St.
Tuesdays: Jan. 23, 31 and Feb.7.

In collaboration with The Jordan Ministry Team, St. Cyril of Alexandria Parish is hosting a series on Pope Francis’ writings.


The next series, will focus on his encyclical On Care of Our Common Home. The three sessions will be on Tuesdays from 6 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. Presentations will be offered both in English and in Spanish. Sessions begin in Dougherty Hall; a free will offering will be taken up to cover the costs.


First Annual Endowment Dinner for Catholic Schools
Feb. 4
St. Augustine Catholic School
8800 E. 22nd St.
5 p.m. Reception and Silent Auction
6 p.m. Dinner and concert by Catholic school performers
Cost $50 per person or $400 for a table of eight guests
To purchase tickets, please visit:


A great way to support Catholic schools, this is the first annual dinner dedicated to an endowment just for schools.  Call for information.


St. Cyril of Alexandria Parish

Exploring Laudato Sí:

From Science and the Spirit

In Spanish on Feb. 7

English on Feb. 8


St. Cyril’s Parish, 4725 E. Pima, will host two evening sessions exploring Pope Francis’ encyclical on the Care of Our Common Home. The presentation, sponsored by the Carmelites’ Peace, Justice & Integrity of Creation Commission, will be in Spanish of Tuesday, Feb.7 and in English on Wednesday, Feb. 8 starting at 7 p.m. in Nicholson Hall. Both evenings are open to all in the Diocese. A free will donation will be accepted.


The presenter will be Father Eduardo Scarel, O.Carm. from Buenos Aires, Argentina. He is the Director of The Climate, Environment and Economics Center at the Pontifical Catholic University of Argentina [a center begun by Pope Francis when he was the Cardinal Archbishop of Buenos Aires] and was one of the collaborators on the encyclical.


Parish Festival
Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Church
221 E. 8th St, Florence
Sat. Feb. 11
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.


Everyone is Welcome to 5th Annual Parish Festival at the parish be held on Saturday, Feb. 11 at Phelan Hall. Come enjoy delicious foods and beverages, music, a silent auction, raffles with great prizes and arts and crafts for sale.