Taking Courageous Steps to Evangelize

From starting a refugee ministry to welcoming back Catholics who have been separated from the Church, Claudia McIvor is living the priorities of Courageously Living the Gospel, to proclaim, invite and encounter. “God does not always show me exactly where I’m going in ministry,” said Claudia McIvor. “God points a direction and sends me, and …

Bishop Gregory Parkes to Honor Parishioners for Selfless Service

Bishop Gregory Parkes will honor and thank parish representatives for distinguished and outstanding service to their church and community by presenting them the St. Jude the Apostle Medal Award on November 24, 2019 at 3:00 p.m. at the Cathedral of St. Jude the Apostle in St. Petersburg. The prayer service will be live video streamed …

All Are Invited to the 2nd Annual Diocese of St. Petersburg African Mass

The AfricanMass on Sunday, November 10, 2019, from 2:00 p.m. -4:00 p.m. will be an opportunity to unite the African Community of the Tampa Bay region and to celebrate the faith of local African Catholics The Mass will be celebrated at St. Peter Claver Catholic Church, (1203 North Nebraska Avenue, Tampa) with prayers and music …

Eight Great Men Answer the Call to Become Deacons

Eight-hundred people attended the Diaconate Ordination Mass and more than 2,000 watched the live video stream on Facebook and dosp.org. Click here to view photos. Eight men stood at the front of the Cathedral of St. Jude the Apostle in St. Petersburg on October 19, 2019 and committed to serving the Catholic Church with humble …

Chairmen of U.S. Bishops’ Committees Comment on Federal Study Released on Danger of Assisted Suicide Laws to Persons with Disabilities

Last week, the National Council on Disabilities (NCD) released a federal study revealing that assisted suicide laws are dangerous to people with disabilities. In its report, “The Danger of Assisted Suicide Laws,” NCD provides several policy recommendations including urging states to not legalize any form of assisted suicide or active euthanasia. The NCD is an …

Saint Leo University Inaugurates 10th President, Jeffrey D. Senese

Eucharistic, Investiture Ceremonies Incorporate Catholic Heritage, Faculty, Staff, Students Saint Leo University’s 10th president in its 130-year history was inaugurated Friday, October 11, in a ceremony in the Marion Bowman Activities Center that incorporated the university’s Catholic heritage and its commitment to student-centered education. In a Mass celebrated by Abbot Isaac Camacho, OSB, and a …

Catholic High School Students Invited to Learn about Scholarship & “Instant Admit”

Saint Leo University will again offer the Catholic Promise Scholarship, which helps make higher education more accessible to Catholic high school students in Florida. The scholarship will be offered for undergraduate students for the Fall 2020 Semester at University Campus. The Catholic Promise Scholarship will award Florida students who have attended four years at a …

Transfiguration Parish Community Experiences Loss and Transformation

Transfiguration Parish will close on October 21, 2019 and will reopen in 2020 as Holy Martyrs of Vietnam Parish. When Father Carlos Rojas learned that his parish, Transfiguration, would be closing its doors, he went through a period of mourning, prayer and discernment. He agonized over what would happen to his tiny but mighty community …

Our Lady of Fatima Parish in Inverness Launches New Youth and Family Ministries as Part of Courageously Living the Gospel

The Youth and Family Ministries of Our Lady of Fatima Parish in Inverness aligned their missions for the launch of a dynamic family-centered program designed to connect Catholics of all ages through inter-generational events and family activities that build community and strengthen personal Catholic identity. Missionary Disciples, Youth and Family Ministries hosted the first “Bring …

U.S. Bishops to Meet November 11-13 in Baltimore, Maryland

Bishop Gregory Parkes and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) will gather for the 2019 Fall General Assembly in Baltimore, November 11-13.   News updates, vote totals, texts of addresses and presentations and other materials will be posted to www.usccb.org/meetings during the general assembly. Those wishing to follow the meeting on social media …

Diocese of St. Petersburg Donates $250,000 for Hurricane Dorian Relief in the Bahamas

On September 25, 2019, Bishop Gregory Parkes issued a check in the amount of $250,000 to provide support to the victims of Hurricane Dorian in the Bahamas. The check was mailed to Archbishop Patrick Pinder of the Archdiocese of Nassau for the specific purpose of relief and recovery efforts in the Bahamas following the devastating …

Parishes Team Up for New Youth Sports Program

When it came to planning a Catholic Impact Initiative for Courageously Living the Gospel, the parishes of the North Central Deanery decided to think outside the box, or actually just outside. They chose to start an inter-parish sports league with the hope of attracting families and instilling values of faith on the field. Their first …

Two New Books Written by Local Priests

The Storyteller’s Catechism by Father Timothy H. Sherwood An increasingly secular world has made our search for God more challenging. But the basic message of this book is that God also searches for us; that the awareness from faith reveals manifestations of the Divine Presence. Parish priests are privileged to have a daily front-row seat …

All Saints Parish Establishes Peer-Led Grief Counseling Ministry to Provide Companionship and Compassion

The largest ministry at All Saints Parish in Clearwater involves outreach to the sick as parishioners and clergy seek to meet an urgent need that surrounds them.  Mease Countryside Hospital is only about 10 minutes away. Plus, within the parish boundaries there are six nursing homes and more than 100 assisted-living facilities. “Our research shows …

Hispanic Leaders Receive Training on Missionary Discipleship

For the past three years, Hispanic leaders in the Diocese of St. Petersburg have been volunteering to serve on parish committees to bring the joy of the Gospel to the peripheries of our community. This process of encountering people in our families, neighborhoods and work places who don’t have a relationship with Jesus and taking …

More than 500 Attend First-Ever “Welcome Home Weekend” at the USF Catholic Student Center

To welcome new students and their families to a new school year at the USF main campus, the Catholic Student Union (CSU) and the Catholic Bulls Alumni Society hosted “Welcome Home Weekend” on August 24-25, 2019. This two-day event focused on food, fun, faith and hospitality! After the 5:00 p.m. Mass on Saturday evening, students, …

Good Counsel Camp Plans to Renovate Cabins with the Support of Parishes in Citrus County

Father Jim Johnson became a camp counselor at Our Lady of Good Counsel Camp in Floral City at the age of 18. Nine years later he was ordained a Catholic priest. “The camp definitely had a role in my vocation to the priesthood,” said Father Johnson. This Catholic youth camp, that is owned by the …

Saint Leo University Supports Bahamian Students, Community

Candlelight Vigil, Counseling, Relief Drive, Comfort Food Dinner Helps Following Dorian While Hurricane Dorian did not strike Saint Leo University, its impact on the Bahamas is strongly felt by the university community located north of Tampa. Nearly 150 Bahamian students attend Saint Leo, with 64 members of the Class of 2023 being from the country. …

Churches Honor Men & Women Who Serve and Protect with a Blue Mass

The BLUE Mass is an Ecumenical and Interfaith event to honor the men and women serving the Tampa Bay region as federal, state, and local law enforcement personnel and emergency responders, including Firefighters, Emergency Medical Technicians, Sheriff Deputies, Police Officers, Troopers, Special Agents, Security Professionals and 9-1-1 Operators. Family members, friends, and all supporters are …

Uplifting Spirits: Local Deacon Serves Travelers at Tampa International Airport

Reflection by  Deacon Joseph Krzanowski, CAC As a deacon who serves as a chaplain at Tampa International Airport, I am privileged to meet many people who have various needs. I think back, for example, to a woman who was standing near the Traveler’s Aid window. She was with her son who was fast asleep. As we …

Students with Special Needs Thrive in Pinellas Park as Morning Star School Celebrates 50th Anniversary

For 50 years, Morning Star School has provided much-needed services to thousands of children with special needs in Tampa Bay, while continually growing. The school welcomes students of all faiths in grades Kindergarten to high school. In the beginning, the school mostly served children with physical disabilities and Down syndrome but has since expanded to …

Courageously Living the Gospel: The Road to Sainthood

Day of Prayer and Reflection on Saturday, November 9, 2019 Many of the saints who came before us courageously lived the Gospel and they can inspire us to do the same! That’s why the Diocese of St. Petersburg is presenting a Day of Reflection that will focus on the lives of six American candidates for …

Local Churches to Host Suicide Prevention Workshops

In response to the high rate of suicide in the Tampa Bay area and Suicide Prevention Month,  three local churches are hosting workshops to educate individuals on how they can help with the prevention of suicide. Topics to be addressed include: How can we encourage family and friends who are struggling with mental illness? What …

Cathedral of St. Jude the Apostle to Host Praise and Worship Event: Holy Spirit Explosion

Faithful from throughout the five-county Catholic Diocese of St. Petersburg are expected to take part in a day of Praise and Worship featuring prayer, music, liturgy and nationally renowned speakers Saturday, Nov. 2 at the Cathedral of St. Jude the Apostle, 5815 5th Avenue North, St. Petersburg. According to event co-coordinator Frank Esposito, Jr., of …

Parishes Gather for Ministries of Mercy Annual Event

Representatives from various Ministries of Mercy initiatives and programs around the Diocese of St. Petersburg gathered on August 17, 2019 for the annual Ministries of Mercy Mass and Luncheon at the Bethany Center in Lutz. The purpose of the event is to thank these leaders for their faithful service, update them on diocesan initiatives and …

Buccaneers Team Priest is Drafted to Lead the Office of Vocations

For four years, Father Chuck Dornquast has served as “team priest” for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. That means he often has a front-row seat to the nail-biting plays, passes and field goals that make up the game of football. Father Chuck now has a front-row seat to how God is working in the lives of …

Foundations of Life Brings Hope & Healing to Women while Honoring the Sacredness of Life

In what seemed a crushing blow to the pro-life movement, earlier this year states began to pass laws that permit unrestricted access to abortion. But according to Rose Llauget, there is still reason for hope. “These laws are accelerating the end to abortion because even the staunchest pro-abortion supporter realizes that this is too far,” …

National Child and Youth Protection Leader Affirms Diocese of St. Petersburg

During the week of July 8, 2019, the Diocese of St. Petersburg welcomed a visit from Deacon Bernie Nojadera, Executive Director of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Secretariat of Child and Youth Protection, based in Washington D.C. The purpose of the visit was for Deacon Nojadera to learn how the Diocese of St. …

Saint Leo University Ready to Welcome Record 1,001 New Students

Move-in Day for New Lions Set for August 15, Classes Begin August 20 There will be many new faces at Saint Leo University as the new academic year kicks off next week. Make that: There will be lots and lots of new faces! The university is expecting 815 new freshmen and 186 transfer students—1,001—when classes …

Re-openings Announced

September 11, 2017 – 5:14pm – As we all recover from Hurricane Irma and begin reestablishing our routines, the Diocese of St. Petersburg is making plans for re-opening our Catholic schools and the Pastoral Center. For information regarding the re-opening of parishes in your area, please contact the parishes directly. Catholic Schools – Most Rev. Gregory …

Schools Closed Through Tuesday

September 9, 2017 – 9pm – The Office of Catholic Schools, in consultation with Most Rev. Gregory Parkes, Bishop of the Diocese of St. Petersburg, announce all diocesan Catholic schools will be closed through Tuesday, September 12, 2017. All Catholic school families are encouraged to check back on this site for further information after the storm …

Dispensation for Sunday Mass Obligation

September 8, 2017 – 11:30am In response to questions regarding weekend Mass attendance, Most Rev. Gregory Parkes has granted dispensation from obligation to attend Masses this weekend, September 9-10, 2017. Click here to download the PDF of the announcement. For more safety announcements including closings, hurricane preparedness and insurance documents for after the storm, click here. …

Check Here for Hurricane Irma Safety Announcements

September 6, 2017 – Hurricane Irma continues to move toward Florida, bringing a potentially large impact to our area. Most Rev. Gregory Parkes and Diocese of St. Petersburg officials will continue to monitor the storm’s progress and post updated safety announcements on the diocesan website. These announcements include: closures preparedness instructions/recommendations insurance guidelines and instructions …

Pope Francis’ New Apostolic Exhortation

Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia (The Joy of Love) Pope Francis’ Apostolic Exhortation on the family, Amoris Laetitia, was released to the public today, April 8, 2016.  According to a news release by the Vatican News Service, this  Apostolic Exhortation harvests the fruits of the two Synods on the family held in Rome in 2014 and 2015.  …

18 Received Papal Honors

We are pleased to announce the recipients of the papal honors of Chaplain to His Holiness, Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice, and Benerementi. The recipients were honored during a private ceremony in April 2016 at the Bethany Center. The following priests have been named Chaplains to His Holiness:  Rev. Monsignor Ronald Aubin Rev. Monsignor Dennis Hughes Rev. Monsignor Joseph Pellegrino …

Obituary ~ January 4, 2016

Bishop Raymond Lessard, Bishop Emeritus of Savannah and spiritual director and professor of  Ecclesiology at the St. Vincent de Paul Regional Seminary. On Sunday, January 3rd, the Epiphany of the Lord, he was called home to the Father and can finally rest his weary body.  (More at this link.) The following services have been arranged: …

Christmas blessings! ~ Pastoral Center Offices

Merry Christmas! For centuries, prophets had foretold the coming of the messiah and the people of Israel heard the message. We are here today because we know the events in the life of Jesus-His birth, baptism by John, teachings, miracles, suffering, death and resurrection. As disciples, may we join the shepherds who went “glorifying and …

For the Faithful Departed ~ December 14, 2015

  Reverend Paul Bedard, S.D.B. We received word that Fr. Bedard, 89, passed away in the Lord on Monday, December 7, 2015, while at Carrollwood Care Center in Tampa.  He resided at Mary Help of Christians Center, Tampa, since his retirement in 2010.  A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated on December 10th at Mary …

Special Collection

Special Collection: Retirement Fund for Religious December 12-13, 2015 Aging religious need your help. In the United States today, there are more than 33,000 senior Catholic sisters, brothers, and religious order priests. These religious worked tirelessly in Catholic schools, hospitals, and agencies, usually for little to no pay. As a result, many religious communities lack …

For the Faithful Departed ~ Dec. 7, 2015

Please keep the souls and the families of our faithful departed in your prayers: Mrs. Isabelle Daly, mother of Nancy Ridenour, Chair of the Diocesan Finance Council, and mother-in-law of David Ridenour, Director of the Diocesan Tribunal Mrs. Daly passed away, Saturday, December 5th up in Illinois. Please keep Nancy, David and their relatives in …

For the Faithful Departed ~ November 30, 2015

  Sister Regina Peltz, SNJM Please remember Sister Regina Peltz, SNJM, who passed away on Saturday, November 28, 2015. Sister Regina served as principal of Holy Family Catholic School for many years. Mrs. Linda Patterson Mrs. Patterson, age 71, of Tampa, passed away November 25, 2015. She served her parish, Church of the Incarnation, Tampa, …

Happy Thanksgiving!

  Pastoral Center Office ~ Thanksgiving Holiday The Pastoral Center Offices will be closed Thursday, November 26 and Friday, November 28 for the Thanksgiving Holiday. May you have a blessed and safe holiday! Thanksgiving Prayer Lord, we thank you for the goodness of our people and for the spirit of justice that fills this nation. …

For the Faithful Departed ~ November 23, 2015

Rev. Inocencio Estibalez      Father Estibalez, 88, a retired priest of the Diocese of St. Petersburg, passed away in the Lord on Saturday, November 14, 2015. Since his retirement, Father Estibalez has resided in Vitoria, Spain.   A Funeral Mass was held on Monday, November 16 in the parish church of San Miguel Arcángel, …

CCHD Special Collection

November 21 and 22, 2015 The collection for the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) provides funding for groups that make lasting change and uplift the poor in the United States. CCHD’s grants improve education, support economic development, and create affordable housing in low-income neighborhoods. Help us continue to defend human dignity and build communities …

For the Faithful Departed ~ October 26, 2015

Mr. Raymond Cormier Mr. Raymond Cormier, age 84, father of Rev. Michael Cormier, went home to the Lord Thursday, October 22, 2015, at St. Joseph Hospital in Tampa following a long and courageous battle with cancer. Mr. Cormier was preceded in death by his beloved wife, Pauline.  He is survived by his son, Reverend Michael …

For the Faithful Departed ~ October 19, 2015

Sister Mary Dorothy Neuhofer, O.S.B., a member of the Benedictine Sisters of Florida, passed into her eternal life on Wednesday, October 14, 2015. Born to Joseph and Helen (Barthle) Neuhofer on June 19, 1931, Sister was raised in St. Joseph, FL, the second of eleven children. One of her siblings, Sister Mary Clare, is also …

For the Faithful Departed ~ October 12, 2015

Sr. Maureen Dorr, O.S.F. Sr. Maureen passed away on October 1, 2015. Sister Maureen faithfully lived the mission of the Franciscan Sisters for 66 years, first as an educator for 40 years and then as a volunteer serving the poor and the marginalized at both Trinity Cafe and the jail, Hillsborough County.   She was an …