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Wednesday Update

Please note:  We are trying a new font out for the Update. Please email or call 520-838-2561 to let us know if this type is easier to read than the one we have been using.

Third week of Lent
I was looking around the internet, and I came across a blog put out by St. Mary’s Catholic Center in College Station, Texas. Much of their ministry is focused on college students, but I thought it could easily apply to many others. The blog was written by Madeline Hill.  I won’t quote the entire blog here, but part of it caught me as something that might be useful to us – not just now at the middle of Lent, but at other times in our lives too:

“This Lent has been a struggle.  It’s been hard to add the time for prayer that I committed to on Ash Wednesday.  It’s been hard to stick to my sacrifice.  It’s been hard to remember why we are doing all of this.  It’s been so easy to get in a routine and forget I ever made the goal to add more prayer in my life.  It’s been easy to get caught up in the hectic nature of the semester (or work, or family).  It’s been way too easy to stick with what’s comfortable.

“Bottom line, over the last couple weeks, it’s been easy to feel defeated.”

The writer went to discuss her reading of the story of Jesus talking with the adulterous woman.  The writer’s insights about Jesus’ mercy and about how we are doing right now in Lent or at other times is very reassuring and offers all of us hope.  I am not into spoilers, but here is how she ends the blog.

When we truly accept that Jesus offers his mercy to us, again and again without fail, we can have the courage to truly begin again. We free ourselves to make the end our Lenten journey a steady trek toward our Savior.

Good words. I encourage you to read the blog.  Here’s the link:

YOUTH Fest 2018 Inspire
Coming up fast!

Saturday, March 10 at the Tucson Convention Center
Registration required


I hope all our parishes with youth ministries will be helping the teens in their parishes attend this Saturday’s event!  Our youth need to have places where they can combine their faithfulness with friends who also are searching for God, and where together with others, they can share their questions and their love of God.

This year’s event is focusing on being inspired, and Our Blessed Mother is part of inspiration. 

You may have seen a story in our Catholic Newspaper about YOUTH fest.  Here’s just some of the story:

“We want them to experience some joy, for them to recognize that and then to have some transformation,” said Tony Vasinda, a youth minister from the Northwest and cofounder of ProjectYM.

ProjectYM is a national ministry training organization that provides speakers to motivate youth ministers and the young people to whom they minister...

Vasinda and Catholic author Michael Marchand – also of ProjectYM - will talk about how the Blessed Mother learned, responded and faithfully lived her assent to be the Mother of God. Her reaction can “inspire” all Catholics, but especially young people, Vasinda said.

“We want to help young people understand the wonderful things that await them if they are inspired by God’s hand in their lives,” he said.

Mary’s reaction to the angel Gabriel at the annunciation was “wonder and awe and reverence,” Vasinda said. Her second response, however, was initially to question and try to understand how God would act in her life. “

In addition to great presenters, young people at the event will be entertained by

The Mary Castner Band.  Castner is a Phoenix-area Catholic youth minister and musician who performs in Catholic parishes and for similar events around the country.”

If teens want to attend the event but are not active in parish youth ministry, they must contact their local parish and register through the youth minister. Please check out the Facebook page listed above.

In the Diocese this week
An unexpected bout with a cold caused me to change my plans to accompany Father Jorge Farias Saucedo to a three-day conference on “Cultures of Formation: Young People, the Faith, and Vocational Discernment” being presented by the University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind.  I took a few hours earlier this week to recover.

We welcome Iliana Gonzales as our new graphic designer to the Pastoral Center today.  She is a 2016 graduate of Franciscan University, where she completed a bachelor’s degree In Multimedia Communication Arts.  Before that, she attended Pima Community College and is a Salpointe grad, Class of 2012.

Iliana also has been widely successful in basketball and baseball and is record holder for fastest scorer to reach 1,000 points in a basketball season and holds the 2015-16 school record for reaching the most points in a basketball game and during a season.

She is replacing Jessica Caraballo, who went on to a position with a local non-profit.

Learn more about Padre Kino
There is a movie coming to Tucson and Nogales about Padre Kino that includes modern day scenarios that can be reflected on as Kino might have reflected on his times in many ways.

As a press release reported, “Viva Kino! is a documentary movie about the Arizona-Sonora borderlands as told by María, a young rodeo instructor. While traveling on horseback, Maria reflects on the tragic changes to these desert borderlands. She finds hope for its future through the inspiration of the life of pioneer Jesuit missionary Eusebio Francisco Kino (1645-1711) and those who carry on his humanitarian work.”

Tucson Premier
March 17, 2018 at 7 pm
Saturday Evening
Gramer Hall - Saints Peter & Paul School
1946 East Adams Street
Tucson, Arizona, United States

The Border Wall Premier - Ambos Nogales
March 18, 2018 at 1 pm
Sunday Afternoon
Lourdes Catholic School Gymnasium
555 E Patagonia Highway
Nogales, Arizona, United States
Special guests - Kino Teens of The Kino Border Initiative


Movie Synopsis (abbreviated from the press release)
“Riding along the Kino Mission Trail on horseback, María discovers the origins of the devotion throughout Mexico for Padre Kino. For 25 years Kino ministered to both the spiritual and temporal needs of the native people living in today's borderlands and established over 20 missions.

During her journey, Maria hears about the missions and ranches that Kino founded beyond the Spanish frontier with the help of the O'odham people. And as their missionary priest, Kino was always a staunch defender of their rights to their lands and to be free from slavery. . .
María sees that the example of Kino's life gives strength to the most desperate and gives hope to all that Kino's vision will be fulfilled -  a desert with peace and solidarity among its borderland people - a desert without borders.”

Yuma Visit
Among the many visits and confirmations that took place last week in Yuma was the John Paul II Awards to teens for service in the faith. The awards took place at Immaculate Conception Parish.

Photo courtesy of Ofelia James Above, Bishop Weisenburger with those participating in the Rite of Election at St. Francis Assisi Parish in Yuma.The awards are given for work in one of the following categories: Catechesis and Evangelization, which includes assisting in religious education; youth group leaders or service during youth retreats; Community Service and Social Justice service through the parish, school or community such as food drives or serving meals at local shelters; and Prayer and Worship for teens who serve as Eucharistic Ministers, Cantors, Lectors or within the Choir/Musical Ministry.

Another event, this one at St. Francis Assisi Parish, was the Rite of Election for those seeking to fully join the Catholic Church on Easter Sunday.  This was the second Rite of Election in our Diocese; the first took place Feb. 18 at St. Augustine Cathedral.

Please remember
Kris Larsen, SFCC, who passed away early on March 5. She was known to many for her work in medical fields.