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Youths in prayer

Homily on twenTy-Ninth Sunday

Bishop Jaime Soto shares reflections in homily on the extraordinary synod of the family conducted in Rome


“Over the course of the last two weeks, there has been much attention to the extraordinary synod of the family conducted in Rome. Bishops from around the world gathered with the Holy Father, Pope Francis. The bishops conducted an engaging, at times startling, conversation about the hopes and challenges regarding the welfare of the family as a sign and instrument of the gospel of life and human dignity in the world.... It is important to say at this juncture that this candid global conversation is the first step in preparation for another synod on the family to be held in October 2015.” — excerpt from Bishop Soto's homily


bullet with text Read the entire text of homily given by Bishop Soto on the Twenty-Ninth Sunday 2014

bullet with text More about the extraordinary synod on the family — From the Official Vatican Network

bullet with text Read full coverage of the synod in stories from Catholic News Service





Youths in prayer

celebrated Nov. 2-8 in parishes

National Vocation Awareness Week calls Catholics to greater prayer, awareness in how they support vocations


The Catholic Church in the United States will celebrate National Vocation Awareness Week, Nov. 2-8. This observance, sponsored by the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations, is a special time for parishes in the country and in the Diocese of Sacramento to foster a culture of vocations for the priesthood, diaconate and consecrated life.

“A culture of vocations is one that provides the necessary support for others to hear and respond to God’s call in their lives,” said Bishop Michael F. Burbidge of Raleigh, North Carolina, chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations. “With God’s grace, we help build that culture through fervent prayer, the witness of our lives and the encouragement we extend to those discerning a vocation to priesthood or consecrated life.”

Father John Guthrie, associate director of the USCCB’s Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations, notes that National Vocation Awareness Week should also focus on communities that are underrepresented among religious vocations today, especially Hispanics.

“While numbers of U.S. Hispanics pursuing religious vocations are picking up, they still lag behind the overall demographic trends,” said Father Guthrie. “Fifty-four percent of U.S. Catholics under the age of 25 are Hispanic, yet only 15 percent of students in major seminaries are Hispanic, and many of these were born in other countries. To reach this untapped potential, the Church must do far more to engage and support young people in these communities.”

More information and resources for National Vocations Awareness Week, including a prayer card, suggested prayers of the faithful and bulletin-ready quotes are available online at www.usccb.org/beliefs-and-teachings/vocations/national-vocation-awareness-week.cfm


bullet with text Link for more information about vocations in the Diocese of Sacramento





Wedding hands

course in Nov. in english and Spanish

Diocese will offer three-class evening series on 'Marriage and the Mystery of God'


The Diocese of Sacramento’s Department of Evangelization and Catechesis is offering a three-class series (in English) on Nov. 4, 13 and 20 titled “Marriage and the Mystery of God.” The series will also be offered in Spanish on Nov. 18 and 25 and Dec. 2.


The series will explore the depths of marriage as God designed it, unlock the profound nature of marriage as a sacrament, and provide practical ways for marriages not just to survive but flourish.


The course in English will be taught by John Hamlon from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Diocesan Pastoral Center in Sacramento and via HD video-conference in Fairfield, Chico, Redding and Truckee. The cost is $25 per person for the series. The course in Spanish will be taught by Father Octavio Ventura from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in Sacramento and via HD video-conference in Fairfield, Chico, Redding and Weed.


For more information on locations and to register online, visit www.themeaningoflove.info.


bullet with text Link here to download a flyer in English and Spanish with more information about this series




Rachel's Vineyard retreat

healing after abortion

Rachel's Vineyard retreat offered in Spanish Nov. 7-9


Is someone you know suffering after an abortion, perhaps years after the choice? The Diocese of Sacramento’s respect life ministry will offer a Rachel’s Vineyard retreat in Spanish from Nov. 7-9. The retreat is an opportunity for healing for any person who has struggled with the emotional or spiritual pain of an abortion.


This unique, effective experience of the mercy and compassion of God is extremely helpful for those who struggle with feelings of shame, anger or grief, and for those who have not forgiven themselves or others. The weekend retreat offers a supportive, confidential and non-judgmental environment where women and men can express, release and reconcile painful abortion emotions and begin the process of restoration, renewal and healing.


The cost is $175 per person. Registration must be received five days prior to the retreat. Financial assistance is available. For a registration packet or more information, call Liz Kelso at (916) 733-0161 or (888) HOPE-790 or send an e-mail inquiry to projectrachel@scd.org. Inquiries and participation are strictly confidential.


bullet with text Link to more information about respect life ministries in the Diocese of Sacramento




Father and son

at our lady of guadalupe parish

Father and son program in Spanish offered on Nov. 8


The “Father-Son” (“Padre e Hijo”) program in Spanish will be offered on Saturday, Nov. 8 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish, located at 711 T Street in Sacramento.


The program, which is tailored to boys ages 12 to 15 and their dads, will explore God’s special gift of human fertility and the beauty and wonder of God’s plan for growing up and becoming a man.


The cost is $20 per family and includes lunch. For more information and to register, contact Vicente Rosas at (916) 919-6948 or at vr@sunsericonstruction.com.


bullet with text Link here to download a flyer with information about the Father-Son workshop on Nov. 8




State capitol

the Calif. Safe neighborhoods act

California's Catholic bishops endorse Proposition 47 facing voters on November ballot


On behalf of all 12 California dioceses, the California Catholic Conference of Bishops have announced their endorsement of “The California Safe Neighborhoods Act,” which will appear as Proposition 47 on the November General Election Ballot on Nov. 4.


The statement represents the unanimous endorsement of the state’s Catholic bishops and will be distributed to 10 million Catholics throughout California.


The California Safe Neighborhoods Act would implement much-needed sentencing reform and improve public safety by investing in victim assistance and prisoner rehabilitation.


The statement in favor of Proposition 47 is made by Bishop Jaime Soto of Sacramento, who serves as president of the California Catholic Conference.


“All human life is sacred and, therefore, all social policies and actions in the realm of criminal justice – as with all of our individual and societal actions – must begin with respect for the life and dignity of the human person,” the statement reads. “In the context of criminal justice, this means that we must first stand in solidarity with victims. When families are shattered, communities are ripped apart and lives are destroyed.”


bullet with text Link to read the entire statement from the CCC endorsing Proposition 47

bullet with text Link to access resources and analysis of ballot propositions from the CA Catholic Conference





Bishop Cotta at interfaith event

16 different faith groups participate

Bishop Cotta joins in fourth annual 'Interfaith Night of Music and Word' at Cathedral


"Peace is Spoken Here" was the theme of the fourth annual Interfaith Night of Music and Word held Oct. 9 at Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in downtown Sacramento.


The event was sponsored by the Interfaith Council of Greater Sacramento and included inspiring music and readings from 16 faith groups. Auxiliary Bishop Myron J. Cotta led the opening procession and a welcome message was given by Jon Fish, president of the Interfaith Council of Greater Sacramento.


Joining Bishop Cotta (in photo above) at the event were, left to right, Landon Hill, Shauna Fish, Beatty Vuki, Seekly Vuki, Jackson Fish, Grace Fish, Josie Fish and Jon Fish.


bullet with text Link here to visit the website of the Interfaith Council of Greater Sacramento




Respect Life poster

october is respect life month

Theme for 2014-15 program

is 'Each of Us is a Masterpiece of God's Creation'


The U.S. bishops’ Respect Life Program begins anew each year on Respect Life Sunday, the first Sunday in October (Oct. 5 this year). The program is highlighted in liturgies and marked by special events.


In a statement to mark Respect Life Month, Cardinal Sean O’Malley, O.F.M. Cap., of Boston called for “community and solidarity” as an antidote to threats against life. Cardinal O’Malley chairs the Committee on Pro-Life Activities of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB).

The cardinal’s statement launches this year’s Respect Life Program, with the theme, “Each of Us is a Masterpiece of God’s Creation.” This year’s theme echoes Pope Francis’ message during his 2013 Day for Life greeting. “Even the weakest and most vulnerable, the sick, the old, the unborn and the poor, are masterpieces of God’s creation, made in his own image, destined to live forever, and deserving of the utmost reverence and respect,” Pope Francis said.

“We want to be part of a society that makes affirmation and protection of human rights its primary objective and its boast,” Cardinal O’Malley. “Yet to women faced with an unexpected pregnancy, abortion is often presented as their only ‘choice.’ A large percentage of children pre-diagnosed as having Down syndrome are never given the chance to live outside their mothers’ wombs. Elderly members of our families fear they will become burdensome and seek physician-assisted suicide. We see these and many more of our brothers and sisters pushed to the periphery.”

Begun in 1972, the Respect Life Program stresses the value and dignity of human life. It is observed in Catholic dioceses throughout the United States. In addition to new prayers and other resources, the 2014-15 Respect Life Program features six articles highlighting the respect due to each person as a “masterpiece of God’s creation.” A variety of topics is treated: adoption, miscarriage, healing within marriage after an abortion, advance medical directives, the treatment of children as commodities, and the connection between poverty and abortion.

bullet with text Click here to read Cardinal O'Malley's statement (English and Spanish) and for many other program resources

bullet with text Click here to view a short video featuring Pope Francis on respect life issues

bullet with text Click here for more information about respect life ministry in the Diocese of Sacramento





Dr. Alan Moy

respect life month feature

Pro-life research center is getting more attention for its research in adult stem cells


More Catholics are beginning to take notice of a Catholic, pro-life medical research center founded by Dr. Alan Moy, a pioneer in medical research, who was featured in the September-October 2013 issue of Catholic Herald Magazine.


Moy is the founder of the nonprofit John Paul II Medical Research Institute based in Iowa City, Iowa. He cofounded the institute in 2006 with his wife Jeanne. He is a 1973 graduate of Holy Spirit School in Sacramento and a 1977 graduate of Christian Brothers High School. He’s achieved success as a clinician, academician, entrepreneur and scientist.


The recent ALS ice bucket challenge craze has netted nearly $100 million in donations for the ALS Association as celebrities and commoners alike are taking to social media, posting videos of themselves getting doused with ice-cold water and challenging four friends to do the same: Get an ice-cold soaking, make a donation, or both, all for the purpose of fighting amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or Lou Gehrig's disease.


But because the ALS Association has acknowledged conducting research using embryonic stem cells -- a practice opposed by the Catholic Church, and one the association said is funded by one specific donor and is coming to an end -- some individuals are making donations instead to the John Paul II Medical Research Institute, which conducts ALS research without using such cells.

The institute focuses on developing core technologies that all diseases need, and doing this within a pro-life value system. Compared to what the ALS Association is pulling in from the challenge, the institute's income thus far has been, well, a drop in the bucket, but it represents a 100 percent increase in donations.


"Last year, we raised $170,000 of private donations, primarily through word of mouth, people we know. Because we're small, we don't have an organizer for marketing, a professional fund-raising organization," said Moy. "In the last 10 days, we've received exposure and that's doubled. That's pretty significant," he told Catholic News Service Aug. 29.


bullet with text Click here for more information about the John Paul II Medical Research Institute

bullet with text Click here to read the feature on Dr. Alan Moy in Catholic Herald Magazine (pages 8-12)





St. John the Evangelist students

gratitude to those in armed forces

Students at St. John the Evangelist School in Carmichael collect treats

for troops for the holidays


Students at St. John the Evangelist School in Carmichael spent the month of September collecting items such as granola bars, travel size toiletries, instant oatmeal and candy to be packaged and sent overseas to U.S. troops over the holidays.


In total, students collected 149 cans of tuna, 82 fruit cups, 362 packages of oatmeal, 66 granola bars, 15 packages of candy, 26 packages of gum, 194 bottles of hand lotion, 195 bars of soap, 121 packs of toothpaste and mouthwash, 72 bottles of hand sanitizer, 48 packages of lip balm, 38 bottles of shampoo, 19 packages of hand wipes and 11 other toiletries. In addition to these items, students in preschool through eighth grade made individual cards expressing their gratitude to men and women for their service in the armed forces.


Students expressed how much it meant to be able to send some holiday cheer to the men and women who sacrifice so much to protect the freedoms Americans enjoy every day. The items will be packed and shipped out in individual care packages, so that the troops will receive them before the holidays.


“Thanks to the suggestion of one of our parents, Melissa Moya, we were able to take on this project as a community and collect items to show our appreciation,” says Tosha Tillotson, principal of St. John the Evangelist School. “It is a reminder to all of us that the simple gestures are the ones that often times mean the most.”


bullet with text Link to the website of St. John the Evangelist School in Carmichael





40 Days for Life image

prayer and fasting, peaceful vigil

40 Days for Life campaign of prayer held through Nov. 2


From Sept. 24 through Nov. 2, Catholics throughout the diocese will join with people of faith across the nation for the ecumenical campaign called “40 Days for Life.” The life-saving, prayerful and peaceful ministry is endorsed by Bishop Jaime Soto and all Catholics are encouraged to participate.


The fall 40 Days for Life will be held in Sacramento and other cities within the Diocese of Sacramento.


40 Days for Life features three components: prayer and fasting for an end to abortion; a peaceful vigil in front of abortion businesses; and community outreach. The aim of 40 Days for Life is to help women who are facing the challenges of an unsupported pregnancy with whatever they might need so that they are better able to choose life for their pre-born children, while also offering love and healing to anyone who has been hurt by abortion.


In Sacramento, participants will hold a prayerful presence at the sidewalk in front of Women’s Health Specialists at 1442 Ethan Way. Participants will be there Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Free parking is available on Hallmark Drive.


For more information about 40 Days for Life, contact Susan Money at (530) 320-1614 or susanalive@gmail.com. Other 40 Days for Life locations within the diocese include Redding, Chico, Yuba City, Fairfield, Vacaville and Vallejo. Please visit the link below for more information.


bullet with text Click here for more information about 40 Days for Life

bullet with text Click here for more information/flyer about 40 Days for Life in the Sacramento region




Holy Family Church destroyed

Northern Valley Catholic Social Service (NVCSS) accepting donations to assist disaster efforts

Boles Fire destroys Holy Family Church, Hall in Weed


Father Joshy Mathew, CMI, parochial administrator of Holy Family Parish in Weed, has announced that weekend Masses will be held at the Ford Theater at the College of the Siskiyous in Weed (until further notice). The location is at 800 College Ave. Masses are celebrated at 5 p.m. on Saturday and 9 a.m.

on Sunday.


Bishop Jaime Soto celebrated Mass on Saturday, Sept. 20 in the Ford Theater at the College of the Siskyous in Weed with parishioners and friends of Holy Family Parish in the wake of the destructive Boles Fire, which destroyed Holy Family Church and Hall in Weed on the afternoon of Sept. 15.


CAL FIRE reports that there were 154 structures damaged or destroyed by the Boles Fire, which burned 479 acres. Among the structures destroyed were Holy Family Church and Hall. The brick and wood church was built in 1967.


Bishop Soto asks for continued prayers for those affected by the wildfire. Water sources have been contaminated and the town is trying to recover from the fire in the weeks to come. Many families within the diocesan community are suffering enormous property losses.


In an interview with KCRA news, Holy Family Parish parochial administrator, Father Joshy Mathew, CMI, said that amid the tragedy and sadness, he would give thanks to God during Mass on Sept. 21. He will focus on being together and present with parishioners despite the losses.  (View video clip at link below.)


Holy Family Parish burningNorthern Valley Catholic Social Service (NVCSS) is accepting donations in response to many inquiries from people who want to offer help.  Personal donations may be sent to:


Northern Valley Catholic Social Service

c/o Weed Fire Fund/Disaster Relief

2400 Washington Ave.

Redding, CA 96001



bullet with text Link to KCRA News story with Father Joshy Mathew, CMI

bullet with text Link to Northern Valley Catholic Social Service





Bishop Soto and ONE Campaign

one campaign update

Catholics from across the diocese pledge $32.7 million


September 1 marked the 12th month of the ONE Campaign for the Diocese of Sacramento. To date, Catholics across the diocese have pledged over $32.7 million.


“On behalf of Bishop Jaime Soto and The Catholic Foundation, I would like to say thank you,” said Rick Maya, executive director of The Catholic Foundation. “Just as impressive is parishioners’ response to Bishop Soto’s challenge to commit to serve five million hours of community service and five million hours of faith formation. The essence of the ONE Campaign is to give, serve and pray – together. While we are at 69 percent of goal, I remain optimistic that over the next three years we will exceed the goal of $50 million."


“The ONE Campaign provides an opportunity for parishes to fund their individual needs," Maya noted. "Your local parish has most likely shared with you how funds raised will help fund a local parish project. Twenty-five percent of every dollar raised is returned to the parish for local needs. Once a parish reaches its campaign goal, the percentage increases to 67 percent, giving even more back to the parish. Many parishes have figured out that success for the campaign means success for the parish. It can mean improved technology, facility repairs and upgrades, or new programs for evangelization and catechesis."


So far in the ONE Campaign, as of Sept. 1, the total number of donors is more than 11,775, 2.7 million service hours have been pledged and 6 million faith formation hours have been pledged.


bullet with text Link here to read the latest updates about the ONE Campaign





Catholic Herald magazine

digital edition on this website

Sept.-Oct. issue of Catholic Herald magazine is published with theme of respect life


The September-October issue of Catholic Herald magazine of the Diocese of Sacramento has been published. The digital edition is available on the right margin of this website or by clicking on the image at the left.


The theme of the magazine is respect life issues and the changing role of grandparents today. The magazine features a cover story and interview with Sharon Embrey of St. Catherine of Siena Parish in Vallejo, who is a full-time mom to her grandkids, Jamey and Daniel. She has adopted her grandchildren as a result of her daughter's mental illness and drug addiction, which leaves her daughter unable to take care of and raise her children. Sharon is a regular presence at St. Catherine of Siena School, where Jamey is now in seventh grade and Daniel in third grade.


Other feature stories include a story on how public health expert, Dr. Stephen McCurdy of UC Davis, views life issues from both a scientific perspective and as a faithful Catholic; how teens Matthew Bajamundi and Julia Stromick, demonstrate pro-life leadership and activism at their high schools; how Susan Money, a member of St. Joseph Parish in Lincoln and the director of Sacramento 40 Days for Life, helped Jean Groth save the life of her son, Christopher; and how winemaker Aimee Sunseri and Trappist monks at the Abbey of New Clairvaux in Vina are on a quest to become closer to God.


Bishop Jaime Soto is publisher of the magazine, which is published six times each year and includes moving faith stories and high-quality photography about Catholics in the diocese as well as news and events of the local church. Individual faith stories are the cornerstone of Catholic Herald Magazine and columns also explore the Catholic faith and educate about the teachings of the church. To donate $15 per year to receive Catholic Herald, call (916) 733-0266.


bullet with text Link to more information about Catholic Herald magazine's issues and themes for 2014

bullet with text Link to the website of Catholic Herald magazine, including the archive of issues published





Diocesan Directory 2014

searchable PDF on this website

Diocese of Sacramento 2014 Directory available to order


The 2014 edition of the Diocese of Sacramento Directory is available for purchase.


The directory contains contact information for all parishes, schools, diocesan offices and institutions and agencies of the diocese. The directory also contains listings for all priests, deacons and men and women religious.


A searchable PDF of the 2014 diocesan directory is available on this website (see right hand navigation margin). Here you can search all content in the directory.


Additional copies of the directory may be purchased by using the link to the PDF form below. If you wish to order, print out the form with your requested order. The suggested donation per book is $14.50 ($10 plus $4.50 for postage and handling). You may pay $10 per book (and avoid the postage and handling fee) by picking up your directory order at the Diocesan Pastoral Center at 2110 Broadway in Sacramento from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on weekdays. Only orders with payment by check or money order payable to the Diocese of Sacramento will be processed.


bullet with text Link to download and print the order form for the 2014 Diocese of Sacramento Directory