All Saints vs. Halloween

10-29-2017Pastor's LetterFr. Don Kline, V.F.

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

The way our culture currently recognizes Halloween is more than scary… it is wrong. Let me attempt to clarify a few things. This week we will celebrate the Feast of All Saints, which is celebrated every November 1st. This celebration dates back to the fourth century. It was originally called the Feast of All Martyrs and it was celebrated on May 13th. The words “martyr” and “saint” originally meant basically the same thing — someone who is a witness to Christ even unto death.

The early Christians usually placed the body of the martyr, someone who had been killed for the faith, in a tomb that was easily accessible. Then on the anniversary of that martyr’s death, the faithful would come and pray and celebrate the Eucharist on or near the tomb of this Christian hero or heroine. That is why many altars have a relic of a saint located in the altar. Eventually, these celebrations were held in local churches to commemorate not just one martyr, but all who had given their lives for the faith. By the fifth century, this feast of “All Saints” was held on the Friday of Easter week.

In the ninth century, Pope Gregory the IV changed the date to November 1st. In 1484 Pope Sixtus IV established November 1st as a holy day of obligation. Those Christians who endured torture for the faith, but did not die, were treated with great respect. Therefore, their local church honored those who led heroic and faithful lives as saints after their deaths.


SJA Financial Report 2017

10-22-2017Pastor's LetterFr. Don Kline, V.F.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Our Lord has blessed St. Joan of Arc parish with some very generous parishioners who enable our parish to continue to function in wonderful ways. Specifically, your generosity has enabled our parish debt to be paid down $83,918 in one year… leaving us a debt of $206,862. Unfortunately, our plate collection and the “Save Our Parish” collections have both decreased a bit this year. The good news is that we have been able to cut back in other areas of spending so as to avoid financial loss. We have seen our parish increase in the total number of parishioners but the number of families who come to Mass regularly changes dramatically depending on the time of the year. The visitors to our fish fry helped us to profit over $20,000 from the fish fry this year.


Planned Parenthood Closing

10-15-2017Pastor's LetterFr. Don Kline, V.F.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

After nearly seven years of prayer, fasting, and a powerful Christian witness by Respect Life groups from several parishes coupled with the faithful presence of the Knights of Columbus every Tuesday night, the Planned Parenthood office on 32nd Street and Thunderbird has officially closed its doors. The hours of standing in the hot sun; hearing the insults of passersby; resisting the temptations to give up, all speak to the grit of the prayer warriors who fought the good fight… and won! Yes, it is only one victorious battle in the war against the unborn but it is one victory. But, as a result of this particular Planned Parenthood closing its doors, abortions will cease to be offered in our neighborhood and lives will be saved.


The Care of the Elderly

10-08-2017Pastor's LetterFr. Don Kline, V.F.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

It is a wonderful blessing to be able to serve you as your priest. I get to meet so many people from so many different walks of life. Today I want to share what a great blessing it is to have so many wonderful seniors in our parish who are so dedicated to Our Lord. Your presence blesses us all. You deserve our prayers, our respect, and our love. I am grateful for all those who have sacrificed so much to make St. Joan of Arc such an incredible place. Your dedication and desire to be a part the life of our parish is inspirational and will hopefully motivate generations to come to do their part and to make a positive difference in our world.


Respect Life Sunday/Month

10-01-2017Pastor's LetterFr. Don Kline, V.F.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I was blessed to travel with a priest as well as Deacon Peter and his wife to Hawaii for summer vacation. My friend was able to arrange one day for us on the Island of Molokai where St. Damien De Veuster and St. Marianne Cope ministered to lepers. Twelve people afflicted with Leprosy or Hansen’s disease who are now cured remain on the Island. If I had to guess, they prefer to be hidden from the world after being treated so harshly when diagnosed.

Normally, people refuse to touch lepers for fear that they will contract leprosy themselves. But Father Damien was different. He would hug those with leprosy and hold their hands to make them feel better and in the process restored their sense of human dignity. The lepers realized that Damien didn't care what they looked like or if they were sick. He saw them for what they truly were-Children of God.


Blessed Stanley Rother

09-24-2017Pastor's LetterFr. Don Kline, V.F.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Fr. Stanley Rother's beatification was held in Oklahoma City last Saturday. This is the 14th United States Saint. The U.S.A. also has its first beatified martyr.

So who is Fr. Stanley Rother? He was a farm boy raised from our nation's heartland. He was raised in Okarche, Oklahoma and his Catholic parish, school and family farm were the pillars of his life. He had good priestly examples so that when the Holy Spirit called him to priestly ministry, he had good examples to guide him.


Together Let us go Forth

09-17-2017Pastor's LetterBishop Thomas J. Olmsted

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

This past week on the Feast of the Exultation of the Holy Cross and the 30th anniversary of St. John Paul II's historical visit to the Arizona desert, I formally announced to the public a campaign to strengthen evangelization and discipleship efforts in the Diocese of Phoenix.

Bishop Olmsted's Complete Letter

True Confessions

09-10-2017Pastor's LetterFr. Don Kline, V.F.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Do you know that people “confess” all the time today? Not to a priest and certainly not in the confessional (the normal place people go to receive the sacrament of confession). No, very often people share their sins openly… with the world… on the web… without any hope of counsel, penance, or absolution. Some people post all kinds of sins on Facebook, tweets and so on. Tragically, people can search for a solution to their problems in the wrong places.

A brother priest recently found a number of “confession websites.” Some were just places that troubled people typed regrets for all to see. But one of them even used Catholic confessional verbiage and had a disclaimer that read, “This is a free service provided for the Internet community and not endorsed by the Church…”


Labor Day

09-03-2017Pastor's LetterFr. Don Kline, V.F.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I recently had an entire day off away from the parish. So I went to visit with my brother and his family. As I drove off for the day, I realized that I forgot my smart phone. I almost turned back, but thought twice. Perhaps, from time to time, I need to be less connected to my email, text messages and phone that seem to keep my priestly duties front and center.

It was an interesting and good day. I noticed that it was difficult to not be plugged in. I was nervous that some crisis was not being tended to, despite the fact that my capable Parochial Vicar, Fr. Daniel, was at the parish and ready for duty. By the end of the day, I realized too, that constant multitasking between work and leisure isn’t so leisurely. And that even doing my beloved priestly ministry, I have to live a life that balances work, faith, leisure, family and so on. It was a timely experience as we approached Labor Day.


Founding Father

08-27-2017Pastor's LetterFr. Don Kline, V.F.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Much ink has been spilled in recent days about the founding fathers of our country. Today's readings present the real Founding Father… Our Heavenly Father… God. Moreover, the readings answer the question of God's existence, the divinity of Jesus and the divine authority of the Church. The first question of God’s existence is a question that I am sure every serious philosopher, theologian, and grandmother must address. Does God exist? Today's Scripture readings answer the question of God’s existence. St. Paul proclaims: "Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How inscrutable are His judgments and how unsearchable His ways!"

St. Paul knows that God is far beyond human reason but St. Paul and countless other holy men and women throughout history have shown us that it is reasonable to believe in God. In fact, St. Paul argues that it is unreasonable to deny God's existence: those who deny God’s existence have blurred reality with fantasy. You can read Paul's argument for yourself in Romans. That being said, faith AND reason go together. Actually, faith perfects reason and leads us to a more complete and holy life. Pray that your faith may be strengthened so that you can grow in your love for God who is love.


The Apparitions of Our Lady of Fatima The 100th Anniversary and Online Giving

08-20-2017Pastor's LetterFr. Don Kline, V.F.

October 13, 2017 is the closing of the 100th anniversary of the first apparition of Our Lady to three shepherd children in Fatima, Portugal. Our parish will be marking this historic event by offering the Rosary after the Monday 6:00pm Mass from now on. All are invited to bring your family to pray the rosary at 6:30pm every Monday beginning in September. We will also begin First Friday Devotions with Adoration beginning immediately after the 8:30am Mass until Benediction which will be at 6:00pm. This will happen every First Friday of the month beginning September 1, 2017.


A Rule of Life

08-13-2017Pastor's LetterFr. Don Kline, V.F.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

St. Joan of Arc is blessed to have a variety of speakers and missionaries visit our parish throughout the year. During our last parish mission, Fr. Zachary spoke so beautifully about five important “rules” that can be a part of our lives every day of our life. I wanted to offer them to you once again in case you were not able to make the mission this year.

[1]The first rule begins when we rise from bed. First thing in the morning say: "This is the first and greatest of all the commandments, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and all your soul, and with your whole mind, and with all your strength’ and the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’

Next, say the morning offering: "O Jesus, in union with your Most Precious Blood, poured out on the cross and offered in every Mass, I offer you today my prayers, works, joys, sorrows, and sufferings for the praise of Your Holy Name and all the desires of Your Sacred Heart; in reparation for sin, for the conversion, of sinners, the union of all Christians and our final union with You in heaven."


Mary – Our Life, Our Sweetness and, most especially, Our Hope (Part Two)

08-06-2017Pastor's LetterDeacon Peter Auriemma

Our Lady told the shepherd children at Fatima that at her last visit with them, all people there would witness a miracle which would prove that her apparitions were true. On October 13, 1917, despite a heavy downpour of rain, an estimated 70,000 people flocked to the field near Fatima to witness this amazing "Miracle of the Sun", and they were not disappointed. They saw the sun make several whirling circles and move around in the sky, and at one point, the sun grew larger, and it appeared that the sun would come crashing down to earth. When the sun returned to its normal place in the heavens, the Lady proved just how much she loves and cares for her children - everyone and everything was dry!