All posts by Maria

New Priest for Our Diocese

Bishop Parkes ordained Reverend Elixavier “Xavy” Castro to the priesthood on Saturday, May 20, 2017, at the Cathedral of St. Jude the Apostle. Praise be to God!

Photos (more will be posted in the coming week, so please continue to check back). If your parish would like free digital copies of any of the photos, please contact the Office of Communications at 727-344-1611 ext. 5307 or at communicate@dosp.org.

Video

2017 Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord

Thursday, May 25, is the 40th day after Easter, when the Church celebrates the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord – when Jesus ascended bodily into heaven in the sight of the apostles.

Since the year 2000 in our diocese and the province of Florida, this holy day of obligation is transferred to the Seventh Sunday of Easter (this year it is on May 28).

Therefore, attending Mass on May 25 is not required (although it is wonderful to do so if you are able).

The Convocation of Catholic Leaders: The Joy of the Gospel in America

This summer, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops will be convening an unprecedented gathering of key leaders from dioceses and Catholic organizations from all across the country in order to assess the challenges and opportunities of our time, particularly in the context of the Church in the United States. This has been an ongoing initiative of the Bishops’ Working Group on the Life and Dignity of the Human Person. The gathering will assemble Catholic leaders for a strategic conversation, under the leadership of the bishops, on forming missionary disciples to animate the Church and to engage the culture.

The following people are the delegates from the Diocese of St. Petersburg who will be attending.

Delegate

Title

Dale Brown

Associate Director, Lay Pastoral Ministry Institute

Mike and Megan Buckler

Director of Youth Ministry, Our Lady of the Rosary

Sabrina Burton-Schultz

Director, Life Ministries

Gerri Drummond

St. Peter Claver Parish Youth Group Ministry

Mark Dufva

Executive Director of Catholic Charities, DOSP, Inc.

Carlos Flores

Diocesan Pastoral Council

Diane Kledzik

Associate Director, Evangelization, SCCs & Adult Faith Formation

Rev. Monsignor Robert Morris

Diocesan Vicar General, Pastor of St. Catherine of Siena Parish

Most Rev. Gregory Parkes

Bishop of St. Petersburg

Rev. Justin Paskert

Campus Minister at USF Catholic Student Center, Parochial Vicar of Corpus Christi Parish

Ray and Terry Pawlicki

St. Rita Parish Parishioner and Volunteer

Rev. Robert Schneider

Director, Office of Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs Ministry, Pastor of St. Stephen Parish

Mary Woltman

President, Diocesan Council of Catholic Women

Pope Francis Gives TED Talk

Pope Francis recently gave a TED Talk, urging people to make real connections with each other. “Good intentions and conventional formulas, so often used to appease our conscience, are not enough,” Pope Francis said. “Let us help each other, all together, to remember that the other is not a statistic or a number. The other has a face.”

Read more about it in this Catholic News Service article.

Watch Pope Francis’ TED talk below. For subtitles in other languages, visit the TED talk website.

2017 Chrism Mass

The Chrism Mass was held at 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday, April 11, 2017, at the Cathedral of St. Jude the Apostle. The Mass of Chrism usually takes place on Holy Thursday, but since the Diocese of St. Petersburg is so large and the priests and other people have to travel so far, it is held on Tuesday in the Cathedral during Holy Week.

Photos / Video

At this Mass, priests, in the presence of the bishop, renewed their personal dedication to Jesus Christ, promised to unite themselves closer to Christ and renewed their commitment to priestly service. The people promised to support their priests and the bishop asked everyone to pray for him.

During this calendar year 2017, twenty one of our priests will celebrate a 25th, 40th, 50th, 60th, and 65th anniversaries of ordination. As is our tradition, Bishop Parkes honored them at the Chrism Mass. See the names of those celebrating below.

25th Anniversary

  • Very Rev. Richard Jankowski, V.F.
  • Rev. Robert G. Romaine
  • Rev. Stephen C. Ryan, S.D.B.
  • Rev. Jose Tejada

40th Anniversary

  • Rev. Hector J. Cruz, S.M.
  • Rev. Jose George
  • Rev. Jerome J. Massimino, O.F.M.
  • Rev. John W. McDowell, O.F.M.
  • Rev. Msgr. Joseph A. Pellegrino
  • Rev. Msgr. Cesar Petilla

50th Anniversary

  • Rev. Raul M. Acosta, S.D.B.
  • Rev. William R. Bigelow
  • Rev. Terence K. Fleming
  • Rev. Malachy Kilbride, C.S.Sp.
  • Rev. Gerasimos T. Murphy, B.S.O.
  • Rev. David J. Tickerhoof, T.O.R.

60th Anniversary

  • Rev. Joseph Braun, M. Afr.
  • Rev. Msgr. Diego Conesa
  • Rev. Msgr. Michael F. Devine
  • Rev. Msgr. James C. Lara

65th Anniversary

  • Rev. Bernardas Talaisis

During the Mass of Chrism, the Oil of Chrism was consecrated by the bishop. The bishop mixed olive oil and balsam in a large container before consecrating the Oil of Chrism. This oil is used in local churches during the sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, in the Cathedral for the sacrament of Holy Orders, and in the blessing of new church altars.

Parish priests or deacons then transported the Oil of Chrism to their local parishes and missions.

The bishop also blessed the Oil of Catechumens and the Oil of the Sick. The Oil of Catechumens is used in a ceremony with people who are preparing to enter the Catholic Church, before they are baptized. The Oil of the Sick is used in the sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick, when people who are seriously ill are blessed.

Two representatives from 74 parishes, the University of South Florida, Pastoral Center and 7 missions in the Diocese brought vessels of olive oil for the bishop to bless for the Oil of Catechumens and the Oil of the Sick. These blessed oils were brought back to their parishes and missions and solemnly presented during local Holy Thursday evening services.

Survey & Listening Sessions with Bishop Parkes

As he settles into his new position as fifth Bishop of St. Petersburg, Bishop Parkes would like to hear the input and opinions of the faithful.

He will be holding nine listening sessions across the Diocese over the next several months to hear the answers to the following three questions.

  1. What are we doing well as a diocese?
  2. What things could we improve upon as a diocese?
  3. What things in ministry should we be focusing on as a local Church?

See the dates and locations for the listening sessions below. If you are unable to attend one of the nine listening sessions, Bishop Parkes would still like your feedback. Please answer the questions via a bilingual, anonymous, online survey (link below). All responses will be read and considered.

The survey is now closed. The survey was available through April 30,2017. 

DATES/LOCATIONS OF NINE LISTENING SESSIONS
PDF Flyer English (Word: Color / B&W) (PDF: Color / B&W) | Image for Social Media

PDF Flyer Spanish (Word: ColorB&W)  (PDF: ColorB&W) | Image for Social Media

February 27, 2017
7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
St. Stephen Parish
5049 Bell Shoals Road
Valrico, FL 33596

February 28, 2017
7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
St. Lawrence Parish
5225 N. Himes Ave
Tampa, FL 33614

March 6, 2017
7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Espiritu Santo Parish
2405 Philippe Pkwy
Safety Harbor, FL 34695

March 14, 2017
10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
St. Scholastica Parish
4301 W. Homosassa Trail
Lecanto, FL 34461

March 20, 2017
7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
St. Mark the Evangelist Parish
9724 Cross Creek Blvd
Tampa, FL 33647

March 24, 2017 – IN SPANISH
7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
St. Clement Parish
1104 N. Alexander Street
Plant City, FL 33563

March 27, 2017
10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
St. Michael the Archangel Parish
8014 State Road 52
Hudson, FL 34667

March 28, 2017
7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
St. Frances Xavier Cabrini Parish
5030 Mariner Blvd.
Spring Hill, FL 34609

April 17, 2017
7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
St. Petersburg Catholic High School
6333 9th Ave. N.
St. Petersburg, FL 33710

Saint Leo University Makes Difference With Bottle Caps

More Than 12,000 Pounds Recycled to Purchase Wheelchairs for Children

Giving back to the community is a central part of life at Saint Leo University, and a recent project not only helped others, but also protected the environment. Students, faculty, staff, and community organizations and businesses collected bottle caps for Caps of Love, a Florida-based nonprofit organization that recycles plastic tops.

The proceeds from recycling the plastic are used to purchase new and refurbished wheelchairs for children with mobility disabilities.

Under the guidance of the Office of Residence Life, Saint Leo collected 12,000 pounds of plastic caps—enough to fill 21 pallets. On Thursday, March 23, Saint Leo held a celebration and send-off for the Caps of Love project featuring food, music, and giveaways while a truck was loaded to take the caps for recycling at Commercial Plastics Recycling in Tampa.

Saint Leo University had many partners in this project including Home Depot; Zephyrhills Water; Rowland Transportation; Sabrina Burton Schultz and the Diocese of St. Petersburg; Montessori by the Sea School; Pasco-Hernando State College-North campus; Southern Charm Mobile Home Park in Zephyrhills; The Rock Church in Brooksville; Trinity Church of Wesley Chapel; Highlander Café located in Crystal River; Naval Air Station Pensacola; Domino’s Pizza; and several Pasco and Hillsborough county schools and scout troops.

Last year, Saint Leo University collected more than 8,000 pounds of plastic bottle caps, which filled 14 pallets.

“Saint Leo University participates in this program to promote giving of our time and realizing that together as a community we can make a difference,” said Heidi D’Ambrosio, senior coordinator for Residence Life.

The goal of the Caps of Love organization is to, “educate the public on how to identify and recycle correctly and to provide wheelchairs to the physically challenged under the age of 21,” in the United States, according to its website.

Saint Leo students sorted through transparent and colored bottle caps and separated them into three types. The main types of plastic Caps of Love recycles are: Polypropylene No. 5, Polyethylene No. 2, and Polyethylene No. 4. The caps were boxed for shipping to the recycling company.

“I think this program is fantastic because it is a way to make a difference in a child’s life and it has brought the community together as well as four counties,” D’Ambrosio said.

The university will continue the project and collect more bottle caps for Caps of Love, hoping to top this year’s total. See accompanying photos by clicking here.

The Catholic Identity of Saint Leo University

Did you know that Saint Leo University is the oldest Catholic university in Florida and is the fourth largest Catholic university in the United States?

Founded in 1889, Saint Leo University is a leading Catholic teaching institution that enrolls almost 15,000 students across our traditional Florida campus, more than 40 education center and office locations, and online degree programs.

Learn more about the history of Saint Leo University in the video below.

St. Patrick’s Feast Day Dispensation

With St. Patrick’s Day falling on a Friday (March 17, 2017) during the Lenten Season, Bishop Gregory Parkes is granting to the faithful of the Diocese of St. Petersburg a dispensation from abstaining from meat on that Friday alone. The faithful are encouraged to choose another day in the same week or as soon as possible to abstain from meat to assist in their spiritual Lenten journey.