Catholic Charities-Diocese of Tyler has established a Disaster Relief Fund to assist those affected by the tornadoes that devastated Canton and Emory, including St. John the Evangelist Church in Emory, on April 29. To donate to the relief effort, please see this webpage. Bishop Joseph E. Strickland has announced that a special collection to assist in recovery efforts will be taken up in churches throughout the diocese May 6-7.

The University of Texas at Tyler Center for Ethics is hosting a panel discussion on Addressing the Epidemic of Domestic Teen Sex Trafficking in East Texas Wednesday, May 10, 5:30-7:30 p.m., in the UT Tyler Ornelas Activity Center Ballroom, 3402 Old Omen Rd. The panel will include experts in the field of human trafficking along with representatives from areas in law enforcement, legal and legislative, private and public education, and health care. A recent study by the Institute on Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault (IDVSA) at The University of Texas at Austin School of Social Work estimates that there are more than 300,000 victims of human trafficking in Texas, including almost 79,000 minors and youth victims of sex trafficking and nearly 234,000 adult victims of labor trafficking. Human trafficking happens when one person is controlled through violence, deception or coercion in situations of commercial sex, forced labor, or domestic servitude. Although human trafficking is known to be prevalent in large states with big urban centers such as Texas, the scope of the crime has been difficult to measure. Existing data sets, which focus almost exclusively on identified victims, have shed light on only a fraction of the problem. Father Gavin Vaverek, promoter of Justice for the Diocese of Tyler, described sex trafficking as “an important problem that is a concern for the Church in her respect for the Sanctity of Life” and is encouraging parishes to send representatives to this discussion. For more information, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 903-566-7023.

The Diocesan Marian Conference is Saturday, May 13, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. on the campus of Bishop Gorman Catholic School in Tyler. The conference will mark the 100th anniversary of the apparition of Our Lady of Fatima. The day will include presentations in English and Spanish, and Bishop Strickland will celebrate Mass in honor of Our Lady of Fatima. For information, contact Deacon Rubén Natera, 903-530-2164, Father John Mary Bowlin, 903-322-3705, Father Raymundo García, 936-404-8182, Father Carlos Rangel, 903-742-5000, or Sisters Maria Carmen and Georgina Sierra, 903-931-1836. Donations for the conference are accepted.

The Diocesan Office of Youth Evangelization is sponsoring the Diocesan Catholic Youth Conference for young people in grades 9-12 the weekend of July 7-9 at Tyler’s Harvey Hall Convention Center. Theme of the weekend is Elevate 2017: Where Heaven and Earth Collide, and it will feature speakers, musicians, Mass, and prayer. Early registration runs through May 15, with a cost of $65. After that date, cost rises to $75 by June 15, and $85 after that. For more information or to download the registration form, please see this webpage.

The Office of Youth Evangelization is sponsoring a Catholic Family Camp weekend June 23-25 at Casa Betania near Tyler, featuring nationally known Catholic speaker Cooper Ray. There will be family activities, Mass and adoration, formation opportunities, campfires, games and skits, and much more! This will be an opportunity to help your family grow closer to one another and to Christ. For more information, see the youth office website here.

The Tyler Diocesan Council of Catholic Women has launched a Rosary Crusade for 2017, calling upon Our Lady of Lourdes to intercede on behalf of the sick, the unborn, families, religious liberty, and more. To see the suggested dates of prayer, see the flyer here. For more information, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Catholic Charities-Diocese of Tyler is seeking volunteers for the Parish Nurse Ministry. Part-time RNs wanted to practice within Catholic churches in East Texas. 8 hrs. per week $20/hr. Flexible hours. Please submit resumes via email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. For information, call Catholic Charities at 903-258-9492 or see the website.

Catholic Charities-Diocese of Tyler will offer free GED classes (High School Equivalency) starting soon. Classes will be held twice a week at Catholic Charities 202 W. Front St. Tyler, TX. Call today, 903-258-9492.

Support Catholic Charities-Diocese of Tyler through Amazon.com. When ordering from Amazon, go to smile.amazon.com and choose Catholic Charities, Diocese of Tyler, as the recipient of the donation from the purchase.

The Maria Goretti Network is a peer ministry group for survivors of abuse and their families. The East Texas Chapter of the Maria Goretti Network meets the third Saturday of every month in the Cathedral Office meeting room (not the Cathedral Center) at 7 p.m. For information, contact Peggy Hammett, 903-592-1617, ext. 19, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Catholic East Texas, the diocesan magazine, is online! Share the link to our full-color publication with family and friends. The magazine is an evangelical publication designed to implement Bishop Strickland’s vision for sharing the beauty of Catholic teaching, history, culture, spirituality, and liturgy in a way that makes our ancient faith attractive to both Catholics and non-Catholics in Northeast Texas. Every article, column, and review in the magazine is written by the clergy, religious, and lay faithful of the Diocese of Tyler. Access the magazine online here.

Athens

St. Edward Church. The St. Edward’s Parish family is invited to the annual Mother’s Day Brunch Sunday, May 14, immediately after 10:30 a.m. Mass. The brunch is hosted by Knights of Columbus Council #10524. Sign-up sheets are located at front and back entrances of church.

Come join us for the parish Spring Festival Saturday, May 13, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.

Un equipo de la Iglesia de la Inmaculada Concepcion, de Corsicana TX presentara un retiro para mujeres en Mayo 20-21. No hay ningún costo por este retiro, pero por favor, llene un formulario de inscripción que están disponibles en la parte posterior de la iglesia. Otro equipo de la Iglesia de la Inmaculada Concepcion, de Corsicana TX, estará aquí el fin de la semana de Mayo 27-28 para presentar un retiro para los hombres. Por favor oren por este retiro. Dios podría estar llamandolos a este retiro.

Join us for Bible Study after the noon Mass on Wednesdays. We are studying “Follow Me: Meeting Jesus in the Gospel of John.” For information, contact Ron Williams at 903-288-0013.

St. Vincent de Paul needs you. If you can volunteer 1-5 hours a week, you can give comfort to our friends and neighbors in crisis. Attend a meeting (1st Wednesday of the month after the noon Mass) or call 903-675-0076.

Atlanta

St. Catherine of Siena Church. Please help us restock our food pantry so we can continue to serve the hungry in our midst. Please bring canned meats and fish, bags of potatoes, cereal, oatmeal, peanut butter and preserves, crackers, soups, lentils, and juices.

Buffalo

St. Kateri Tekakwitha Church. A Quinceañera platica is scheduled for May 6, 9 a.m.-noon.

Our Catholic Summer University will be June 5-9, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. each day.

Crockett

St. Francis of the Tejas Church. The last day of formation will be May 21 with confirmation and first Communion meeting on May 28 for final reconciliation before receiving the sacraments.

Scholarship applications are available in the church office for all graduating high school seniors. Deadline is May 5.

Little Rock Scripture Study meets Sundays in the hall, 2-3:30 p.m. We are studying the Gospel of Luke.

Holy Mass from the sanctuary of St. Francis of the Tejas is broadcast Sundays at 5 p.m. on KIVY Channel 16.

Diboll

Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe Parroquia. Invito a todas las personas que están interesadas en aprendar más sobre la fe y la Sagrada Biblia los Miércoles después de a misa a 6 p.m. en el Templo Parroquial.

Jueves a las 6:30 p.m. inicia con la Santa Misa. Grupo de Oración Huellas en la Arena and Come Lord Jesus.

Frankston

St. Charles Borromeo Church. Friday, May 5, is First Friday. Mass will begin at 6 p.m., followed by exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, adoration, and benediction.

The SCB Food Pantry will be open Thursday, May 11, 9-11:30 a.m., for any family needing help with groceries.

The Rosary will be prayed 30 minutes before the Saturday and Sunday Masses during the month of May. We encourage you to come early and join us.

There will be a First Sunday Potluck Meal next Sunday, May 7, after the 9 a.m. Mass. Please bring a dish and join us for a good meal and fun fellowship!

St. Charles Borromeo t-shirts will be available for pre-order on the weekends of May 20-21 and May 27-28. The cost for a t-shirt is only $10.

We are now collecting toilet paper and paper towels for our food pantry patrons. Please bring your donation to church next weekend or to the church office during regular office hours.

Eucharistic adoration is every Wednesday from 6-7:30 p.m. Come spend a little time with Jesus!

Gun Barrel City

St. Jude Church. The Crowning of Mary will be Sunday, May 7, before the 9 a.m. and noon Masses. All children are invited to bring a flower for the crowning of our Blessed Mother.

Our softball team will play games May 6 at 10 a.m. and 11 a.m., May 13 at 11 a.m. and noon, and May 20 at 9 a.m. and 10 a.m. Come out and support our team!

The last day of faith formation classes is May 21.

All graduating seniors from Kemp, Mabank, Eustace, Malakoff, and Athens will be honored at Mass May 21 at noon, with a reception following.

Adoration is after 8:30 a.m. Mass every Friday.

The Cenacle Prayer Group meets every Tuesday after 8 a.m. Mass in the chapel to pray. All are invited to join us.

Holly Lake

Holy Spirit Church. Our International Food Fest is Saturday, May 6, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Taste tickets are $1 per ticket (sold in packs of 5). Tickets may be exchanged at any food vendor for a sample of food from that vendor. Raffle tickets are $5 each or 5 for $20. Turn the tickets into the church office or collection basket in an envelope with your name on the front of the envelope or to the person that collecting or selling tickets. Raffle prizes include a one-week stay at Table Rock Lake in Branson, MO; one round-trip ticket anywhere Southwest Airlines flies domestically; one $250.00 Visa gift card.

Exposition is every Tuesday, 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. We pray for peace in our nation.

Jefferson

Immaculate Conception Church. We are trying to bring food to church every week for those in need who come to our Immaculate Conception Catholic Community for help and assistance. Our canned foods offerings help keep our St. Vincent de Paul food pantry open and active. We are blessed to be able to look for and to find and to feed Christ in our brothers and sisters who are in need. We are called to recognize the truth that we are completely and totally dependent on God for all the needs of our lives. And we hopefully do recognize our own need and hunger for Christ.

Longview

St. Mary Catholic School. St. Mary Catholic School is enrolling for the 2017-2018 academic year. St. Mary is a college preparatory PreK3-12 program focusing on academic excellence and with a program that includes fine arts and competitive athletics. To schedule a tour, call 903-753-1657. For information about the program or tuition, call principal Amy Blalock, 903-918-7182, or Melinda Dunn, 903-806-0175, or see the website.

A Knight to Remember Gala with dinner, dance, and silent auction will be Saturday, May 13, 6:30 p.m. at the Summit Club, 3700 Judson Road. Tickets are $80 each, and can be purchased on line at www.stmaryslgv.org. Raffle tickets are $25 and can be purchased from any school family or from the church office. Don’t miss your chance to win a Dodge Challenger. All proceeds benefit the students and programs at St. Mary Catholic School.

The 24th annual Monsignor Szapka Memorial Gold Classic 2-man scramble benefitting the Longview Catholic School Endowment Fund is Saturday, May 20, 9 a.m.-noon, at the Wood Hollow Golf Club, 5121 N. McCann Road. Cost is $110 per person for green fee, cart, and raffle tickets. For information, contact Robert Walker, 903-736-5757, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

St. Mary Church. Graduating seniors will be recognized at all Masses May 13 and 14. Help us congratulate the young people of the Class of 2017.

Father Kusmirek will celebrate the 40th anniversary of his ordination. Baskets for spiritual bouquets are available at the church entrance. Bring cupcakes to share after Mass.

The Catholic Daughters end-of-the-year dinner and business meeting will be Monday, May 15, at 6:30 p.m. All Catholic women 18 and older are invited to learn more about the organization.

The St. Nicholas Bazaar is collecting homemade jams and jellies for the 2017 bazaar. Bring donations to the church office. Please label and leave your name and phone number. For information, contact Margaret at 903-452-3474.

The Totus Tuus summer formation program will be July 9-14.

St. Mary’s Teen Connection meets the first, second, and third Wednesdays of the month. Come join us, 7:30-9 p.m. in the parish hall, for fellowship, faith, food, and fun. Our pool party will be June 7, 2-7 p.m.

Midsummer Madness Service Week is June 12-17, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

St. Mary’s Middle School Youth Group will meet on the fourth Wednesday of every month 5:30-7 p.m. in the Parish Center. All middle school students are invited. Let’s get together to love God, love others and make disciples!

Gluten Free hosts are available at all our Masses for people with celiac disease. Please see the instituted acolyte or deacon before Mass to request a gluten-free host. Those hosts will be consecrated separately from the other hosts. Please go to the instituted acolyte or deacon you informed to receive that host for Holy Communion.

Young Adults is starting a new series in room 304 in the Parish Center. Free childcare is provided! Catholic Atheist will look at five specific ways in which we profess God, but then act and think as if he doesn’t exist. We meet every Sunday.

St. Matthew Church. The celebration of confirmation will be Saturday, May 6, at 9 a.m., and Saturday, May 13, at 9 a.m. and noon (Spanish).

The celebration of first Communion will be Saturday and Sunday, May 27 and 28. Families may choose any of the Masses on these dates. Please contact Freeda in the Faith Formation Office.

Enrollment is open now for vacation Bible school, June 12-16. Cost is $10 per child and includes a T-shirt.

Enrollment is open for faith formation for the year 2017-2018. Cost by the end of May is $10 per child; June-August, $20 per child; and $30 per child after August.

Lufkin

St. Andrew the Apostle Church. If you are graduating from high school or college in 2017, please send us your name and mailing address. You may call the office to report this information during usual office hours or you can e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

St. Andrew’s Youth Group would like to invite all middle school and high school students to our Life and Edge Nights on Wednesdays, 6:30-8 pm, at the church.

Godparents and parents who wish to have their children baptized must attend a baptism preparation class scheduled every second and third Friday of the month at 7 p.m. in Spanish. English classes are by appointment. All baptisms are held the third Saturday of the month at 11 a.m. Please contact the parish office 2-3 months prior to register. Please bring a copy of the child’s birth certificate.

Padres y Padrinos que desean tener a sus hijos bautizados deben atender dos clases de preparación bautismal. Serán cada segundo y tercer viernes del mes a 7 pm. Todos los bautismos se llevarán a cabo el tercer sábado del mes a 11am. Por favor llamar a la oficina 2-3 meses antes del bautismo. Traer una copia del certificado de nacimiento de su hijo.

St. Patrick Catholic School. Registration for the 2017-2018 academic year is open. St. Patrick is a co-educational private Catholic school serving students of all faiths in grades PreK3-8. We offer exceptional educational opportunities to our students and are dedicated to their spiritual, academic and physical development. Our programs emphasize religious education, advanced curriculum, technology and physical fitness. Students learn the skills that empower them to excel in today’s society. St. Patrick is the only school in the Lufkin area to offer the Kumon math program and to be designated as a PreK Center of Excellence, a gold standard in high-quality PreK by the State of Texas. For more information, call 936-634-6719 or see the website.

St. Patrick Church. Eucharistic Ministers are needed for all English Masses, especially the 5 pm Sunday Mass and the 5:30 p.m. Saturday Mass. If you are interested, please call Angela Quillin at 936-632-7688 after 5 p.m. or let the office know. Training will be scheduled soon for all who have not been trained within the last two years.

First Friday is May 5. We will have adoration after the 9 a.m. Mass until the 5:30 p.m. Mass. After the 7 p.m. (Spanish) Mass, we will have a holy hour, followed by adoration until midnight.

Our youth group is planning a garage sale. Please bring donations of clothes, toys, or any item they can sell to the Faith Formation Hall on Mondays at 6 p.m.

Fiestas Patrias will be in September. Any young woman who wishes to register as a candidate for queen should call the parish office.

The St. Benedict Prayer Group invites everyone to come every Tuesday, 7:30-9 p.m., to praise the Lord.

The Ladies of the Rosary group meets Tuesdays at 10 a.m. in the parish office. Join us and make mission rosaries. For more information, contact Mrs. Wanda Brandon at 936-824-3253 or Mrs. Bea Treviño at 936-829-2209.

Madisonville

St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church. First Eucharist and confirmation will be celebrated at both Masses Sunday, May 7. Those being confirmed during the 9:30 a.m. Mass will practice at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday. Those being confirmed during the 1 p.m. Mass will practice at 1 p.m. on Saturday. Receptions will follow both celebrations on Sunday.

During the merry month of May, our church is asked to assist in restocking the pantry at our local outreach center. Use your coupons to their advantage so we can fill the grocery cart every week next month.

Confessions are available on Saturday mornings 11 a.m.-noon or by appointment. Just call or text.

A new order for additional Memorial Bricks will soon be placed. Now is the perfect time to honor the memory of a special loved one. Forms with all the directions are available in the narthex or on the parish website.

Is it time to consider purchasing a niche in the parish columbarium? Have the peace of mind knowing that you will not be leaving difficult decisions to your children. Details are here.

Malakoff

Mary Queen of Heaven Church. Graduating seniors will be honored at the 10 a.m. Mass May 28, with a reception to follow.

Refreshments are served after the 10 a.m. Mass on Sundays in the parish hall. Come join us, and get to know your parish family.

Marshall

St. Joseph Church. The Knights of Columbus spaghetti dinner for scholarships will be Sunday, May 11, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Cost is $8 a plate. Tickets can be purchased from any Knight.

All graduating high school seniors of Marshall and surrounding areas are invited to give your name, address, and school name to the office. We will be mailing invitations to our upcoming Senior Mass and lunch soon.

The food bank is requesting cans of soup. Please help us feed the hungry in our midst.

Hot meals are served to those in need Tuesdays, 4:30-5:30 p.m. in the parish hall.

Travel with Deacon John Sargent to Ireland June 23-July 2. Cost is $3,700 per person. To register, call 855-842-8001 or 508-340-9370, or register online at www.proximotravel.com.

Mineola

St. Peter the Apostle Church.

Mount Pleasant

St. Michael Church. Come and Join our Apologetics/Bible Study Wednesdays in St. Michael Hall from 9-10:15 a.m. and 6-7:30 p.m. Everyone is invited to come and participate in learning the word of the Lord.

Mount Vernon

Sacred Heart Church. We will have our end of the year celebration for Faith Formation and also celebrate “Kids Day” on Wednesday, May 3. If you would like to donate food or candy please contact Cristina Narvaez, Margarita Torres or Corazon Gonzalez.

Confirmations will be Saturday, May 27, at 5:30 p.m.

Nacogdoches

Sacred Heart Church. Sacred Heart Outstanding Catholic Kids (SHOCK) youth group meets Wednesday nights, 6:45-8:30 p.m.

All young people in grades 6-12 are invited to join us in the “Upper Room” for faith, fun, and fellowship. For information, please contact Rebecca at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Our food pantry is open on the second Tuesday of every month, 9 a.m.-noon. All monetary support is appreciated, and special envelopes are now available in the vestibule for your support. Help us feed the hungry in our midst.

St. Mary’s Chapel, Stephen F. Austin State University. The 3rd annual Spring Block Party is Saturday, May 6. To help out or to sponsor an activity or item, contact Austin Thurman, 972-765-8335, orb email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Palestine

Sacred Heart Church. Adult Christian Initiation classes are held each Wednesday, 6-8 p.m. in the Activity Building.

We are taking reservations for an 11-day pilgrimage to Fatima, Lourdes, and the Camino de Santiago in November. Cost is $2,999 per person, and registration ends June 1. We will celebrate the 100th anniversary of Our Lady’s apparitions to three children in Fatima, relive the story of Lourdes, visit the walled city of Avila, tour Madrid and the Prado Museum, and visit Santiago de Compostela, the burial place of St. James. If we do not get 10 reservations, the pilgrimage will be canceled. Contact the church office or Father Rajain Mathias for more information.

Texarkana

Sacred Heart Church. Sacramental prep practice for confirmation and first Eucharist will be Wednesday, May 10, at 6:30 p.m.

The Women’s Society Unit III fundraiser, Painting with a Purpose, will be Thursday, May 11, 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Painting with a Twist, 2700 Richmond Rd. The cost is $35, and proceeds will go to the McInturrff family. To reserve a seat, please go to paintingwithatwist.com/Texarkana or call 903-838-9178. Seating is limited.

Father Mike Adams will lead an Advent pilgrimage to the Holy Land Nov. 27-Dec.8. The 12-day “Where Christ Was Born Tour” will include visits to Tel Aviv and Nazareth, Capernaum, Cana and Mount Tabor, Jerusalem, Bethlehem, and the Dead Sea. Cost is $2,920 per person without airfare and $4,420 all-inclusive. A deposit of $1,000 per person is required at the time of booking. For information, call John or Natalie at 800-675-9088, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or see the website.

Catholic Charities is seeking to expand the Parish Nursing Program in neighboring areas (Atlanta, New Boston, etc.). Part-time nurses are wanted to work in a parish setting eight hours a week at $20/hour. The hours are flexible. Please submit resumes via email to Jennie Pierce MSN, APRN-CNS, Parish Nurse Coordinator, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. For information, see the Catholic Charities website or call 903-372-3229.

Learn the Spanish language. Lessons in basic, intermediate, and advanced are available. Lessons are $10 each. For information, call Betty Rodriguez, 903-691-7931.

Tyler

Bishop Gorman Catholic Schools. Registration for the 2017-2018 academic year is open. Bishop Gorman is a college preparatory 6-12 program that focuses on academic excellence with an emphasis on Catholic Christian formation. Bishop Gorman is a Top 50 Catholic High School, 2005-2015; a Blue Ribbon “Excellence in Education” Award Winner 1998 by the U.S. Department of Education; TAPPS 3A Overall State Champions 2001 and 2002; TAPPS 3A Academic State Champions, 1999, 2000, and 2002; and Middle School PSIA State Academic Champions 2014. For more information, call the school at 903-561-2424 or see the website.

Giving to Gorman has never been easier. Let your Amazon purchases help Bishop Gorman. Bishop Gorman is part of the Amazon Smile program. Amazon Smile pays .5% of your purchase to Bishop Gorman. To participate, go to smile.amazon.com and log in using your normal Amazon username and password. Set up an Amazon account first if you do not already have one. Once on Amazon Smile, search for Bishop Gorman Catholic School as your charity of choice and continue shopping. Each subsequent time you shop on Amazon, start at smile.amazon.com instead of the usual Amazon website.

St. Gregory Cathedral School. Registration for the 2017-2018 academic year is open. St. Gregory is Tyler’s oldest private, Christian elementary school, serving grades PreK-5 and the city’s only U.S. Department of Education Blue Ribbon School, a distinction earned by scoring in the top 15 percent of the nation on national standardized tests.  St. Gregory has the distinction of being a three-time Blue Ribbon school, one of the very few in the nation to achieve this honor. For more information, call the school at 903-595-4109, or see the website.

The annual St. Gregory musical is Thursday, May 4, in Caldwell Auditorium. This year’s theme is “Turn the Page.” Dress rehearsal is at 10 a.m. and the performance is at 6 p.m.

John Paul the Great Catholic Campus Ministry, University of Texas at Tyler. We have Mass, adoration, confessions, and the rosary throughout the week. See our schedule on our website.

Tyler Junior College Apache Catholics Campus Ministry. We meet Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m. in TJC’s Jenkins Hall, first-floor conference room. Come join us for weekly liturgies and a pizza supper. For information about the group, contact Deacon Bill Necessary, 903-780-3519 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. Catholic Charities-Diocese of Tyler has a part-time position available for a Coordinator of the new Infant Safe Sleep program. The coordinator will be in contact with area hospitals and OBGYN providers to distribute free Baby Boxes (a temporary baby crib) and coordinate education on Infant Safe Sleep to new parents. Please email resumes to Kathy Harry, Executive Director-Catholic Charities, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 903 258-9492, ext. 105, for more information.

Baptism Preparation classes in English will be held on Mondays, May 8 and 15, 6:30–8:30 p.m. in the Cathedral Center. Parents and Godparents are required to attend Baptism Preparation Classes. If you have questions please call 903-592-1617. Please bring a copy of the child’s birth certificate to the class.

Registration for Vacation Bible School, June 5-9, 9 a.m.-noon, is open. Register online or volunteer by May 15 here. Cost is $20 per child, capped at $60 per family. Fee includes shirt, CD, and daily snack and drink.

A basic Ethics and Integrity training is Saturday, May 7, 3:30-6:30 p.m. in the Cathedral Center. The Diocese of Tyler requires that all church employees and volunteers who work with children and vulnerable adults have a signed Ethics and Integrity certification on file at the Chancery.

Come and have an adventure while exploring the Documents of the Second Vatican Council June 14, 15 & 16, 2017 Cathedral Center 6:30pm – 8:30pm. Please register before June 9. To register or for more information, please contact Veronica Lemus at 903-952-1617, ext. 117, or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

National Directory for Catechesis sessions will be offered July 12, 13, and 14, 6:30-8:30 p.m., in the Cathedral Center. Please register before July 7. To register or for more information, please contact Veronica Lemus at 903-952-1617, ext. 117, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The Senior Lunch Bunch will meet on Wednesday, May 17, for 12:05 p.m. Mass at Saints Peter and Paul Chapel. After Mass we will meet to have lunch at Cotton Patch Café, located at 322 ESE Loop 323. We invite all seniors to join us. Please call 903-258-0995 for information.

The Cathedral once again is able to offer faith formation for children with special needs. We have two certified teachers who have dedicated themselves to this educational ministry. These classes are for any student with a special need or who might benefit from some extra help. For more information, please contact Peggy Hammett at 903-592-1617, ext. 119, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

A Rosary Holy Hour Held is weekly on Tuesdays at 11 a.m. in the Adoration Chapel at Saints Peter and Paul. All are invited to join us. For more information, contact Susan Mills 903-780-2935 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

St. Joseph the Worker Church. The Little Flowers Girls’ Club, a club for Catholic girls ages 5-10, meets the first Saturday of every month through the month of May, beginning with Mass at 9 a.m.

The Little Women Hospitality Club for Catholic girls ages 11-18 meets the first Saturday of every month through the month of May, beginning with Mass at 9 a.m.

St. Joseph the Worker’s Homeschool Group is a parish-based support group for all mothers.  We meet once a month to plan activities for our children, prayer, reading to encourage us in our vocation, sharing, and fellowship.  If you would like to join or receive email of planned events, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Whitehouse

Prince of Peace Church. Springfest 2017 is May 13. We need your help and support to make it a joyful community event. Please contact any of the following if you can help: Jim and Annette Krause, 713-594-4484; Linda Rossler, 903-839-7138; Tony Zapata, 903-530-3639; or Julie Miller, 903-245-1223.

EMORY – St. John The Evangelist Church in Emory was destroyed by one of the tornadoes that ripped across East Texas the evening of April 29. About 45 people were sheltering in the parish hall some 10 feet away from the church during the storm, but no injuries were reported.

Mass was held outside the church April 30, with parishioners gathering “in prayer and gratitude,” according to St. John’s Facebook page.

St. John is a small parish of about 150 families in Rains County. The Catholic community formed in 1994, and was named a parish in 2013.

Catholic Charities-Diocese of Tyler has established a Disaster Relief Fund to assist those affected by the tornadoes that devastated the Canton and Emory areas including St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church.  To contribute to this fund, please follow this link to the Catholic Charities website>>>

Bishop Strickland has also directed that a special collection to assist in the recovery efforts will be taken in up in all parishes and missions of the Diocese on May 6-7.  There is no volunteer assistance needed at this time at St. John’s Parish.

The National Weather Service has confirmed that four tornadoes hit East Texas Saturday night, though more may be confirmed as information is collected. Van Zandt and Henderson Counties were hardest hit, according to local press reports.

Five deaths have been confirmed, and at least 45 people were injured. Local law enforcement is conducting door-to-door search efforts in hardest-hit areas.

Numerous homes and other structures were damaged or destroyed.

Displacement centers have been set up in local churches, and the Red Cross has opened shelters in First Methodist Church Life Center, 600 S. Buffalo, in Canton and the Emory City Center, 735 Texas Street North, Emory. The Sears Home Store in Canton has been designated an animal shelter for those who need a safe place for pets.

The Red Cross has set up a website for those looking for loved ones in affected areas or those seeking to let loved ones know they are safe. See the website here.

Information on St. John damage estimates, as well as relief efforts, will be updated as it comes. Please watch the website, as well as the diocesan Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts, for that information. The St. John website is here.

After due consultation and prayerful reflection, and in order to provide for the proper care of souls entrusted to him, Bishop Joseph E. Strickland is pleased to announce the following pastoral assignments and appointments for the Diocese of Tyler, which are effective this spring and summer.

Pastors

Very Rev. Daniel Dower, STL, assigned as Pastor of St. Mary Parish in Longview (from Pastor of Christ the King Parish in Kilgore). Effective June 1, 2017.

Very Rev. John Gomez, JCL, assigned as Pastor of Christ the King Parish in Kilgore (from Pastor of Holy Cross Parish in Pittsburg). Father Gomez will remain Vicar General. Effective June 1, 2017.

Rev. Mark Kusmirek assigned as Pastor of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish in Madisonville (from Pastor of St. Mary Parish in Longview).  Effective June 1, 2017.

Rev. Juan Carlos Rivera assigned as Pastor of Holy Cross Parish in Pittsburg (from Priest-in-Charge of Sacred Heart of Jesus Mission in Rusk and Ven. Antonio Margil Mission in Alto). Effective June 1, 2017.

Rev. Morgan White assigned as Pastor of Mary Queen of Heaven Parish in Malakoff (from full-time academic studies at The Liturgical Institute at the University of St. Mary of the Lake in Mundelein, Ill.). Effective June 1, 2017.

Administrators

Rev. Nelson Muñoz assigned as Parochial Administrator of St. Therese of Lisieux Parish in Center and Priest-in-Charge of St. Mary of the Epiphany Mission in Timpson (from Parochial Vicar of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Tyler). Effective June 1, 2017.

Priests-in-Charge

Rev. George Elliott, STL, assigned as Priest-in-Charge of Sacred Heart of Jesus Mission in Rusk and Ven. Antonio Margil Mission in Alto (from Parochial Vicar of St. Michael Parish in Mount Pleasant). Effective June 1, 2017.

Parochial Vicars

Rev. Joshua Neu, STL, assigned as Parochial Vicar of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Tyler (from full-time academic studies at the Pontifical Biblical Institute in Rome). Effective August 1, 2017.

Rev. Jose Luis Vidarte assigned as Parochial Vicar of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Tyler (from Pastor of St. Therese of Lisieux Parish in Center and Priest-in-Charge of St. Mary of the Epiphany Mission in Timpson). Effective June 1, 2017.

Rev. Kevin Young assigned as Parochial Vicar of St. Anthony Parish in Longview (from Parochial Vicar of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Tyler). Effective August 1, 2017.

Rev. Cristian Zelaya assigned as Parochial Vicar of St. Michael Parish in Mount Pleasant (from Parochial Vicar of St. Matthew Parish in Longview). Effective June 1, 2017.

Other Assignments and Appointments

Very Rev. Daniel Dower, STL, appointed Dean of the East Central Deanery (from Episcopal Vicar of Education). Effective June 1, 2017

Very Rev. Anthony McLaughlin, JCD, assigned as President of Bishop Gorman Catholic School (from Pastor of Mary Queen of Heaven in Malakoff). Father McLaughlin will remain Vicar General. Effective June 1, 2017.

Retirements

Rev. Michael Barone granted retirement from active ministry and appointed to Senior Priest Status (from Pastor of St. Elizbeth Ann Seton, Madisonville). Effective June 1, 2017.

Additional assignments and appointments may be announced later this summer if pastoral needs develop.

April is Child Abuse Prevention Month, a time to recognize that we each can play a part in promoting the social and emotional well-being of children and families in our communities. The Catholic Church is a leader in abuse prevention programs and procedures, so that we may protect our most valuable gift from God – our children. For information on how you can become more informed and involved in keeping our children safe, see the Safe Environment website or call Maria Flores 903-534-077, ext. 188. Suggestions for Safe Environment educational materials, bulletin inserts, prayers in English and Spanish, and links to other resources are available there.

Father Dan Dower, pastor of Christ the King Church in Kilgore and diocesan Episcopal Vicar for Education, will celebrate the annual Mass for families with special needs Saturday, April 29, at 10 a.m. in the Chapel of Sts. Peter and Paul on the Bishop Gorman Schools campus. A reception will follow in the Chancery. All families with children or adults with special needs are welcome. A modified bilingual liturgy will be celebrated to accommodate these needs. All parishes are asked to send a representative so they can see how to model this liturgy in their parish. Special dispensation from your Sunday obligation for this weekend will be granted to those who attend. Please RSVP to Linda Porter by April 27 so we can provide for the reception. Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for information or to register.

The music ministry of Stephen F. Austin State University’s St. Mary’s Catholic Campus Ministry will be giving a 6 p.m. choir concert of sacred music at Sacred Heart Church on Saturday, April 29. The “Lord of the Dance” Eastertide music celebration will follow the 5 p.m.vigil Mass with Father Christopher V. Ruggles of Sacred Heart and Father Denzil Vithanage of St. Mary’s con-celebrating and with the combined choir-led music ministries of both St. Mary’s and Sacred Heart Church. “Lord of the Dance” is open to the public with free-will donations accepted towards a planned 2018 spring break choir monastery retreat. A reception for all who attend will immediately follow in the Margil Center. Sacred Heart Church is located at 2508 Appleby Sand Road in Nacogdoches, TX 75965. For more information, contact Linda Parr at 936-715-5148 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. If you cannot attend but would like to support the effort, donations can be made online at sfacatholic.net or mailed to 214 Wettermark, Nacogdoches, TX 75965.

The Diocesan Marian Conference is Saturday, May 13, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. on the campus of Bishop Gorman Catholic School in Tyler. The conference will mark the 100th anniversary of the apparition of Our Lady of Fatima. The day will include presentations in English and Spanish, and Bishop Joseph E. Strickland will celebrate Mass in honor of Our Lady of Fatima. For information, contact Deacon Rubén Natera, 903-530-2164, Father John Mary Bowlin, 903-322-3705, Father Raymundo García, 936-404-8182, Father Carlos Rangel, 903-742-5000, or Sisters Maria Carmen and Georgina Sierra, 903-931-1836. Donations for the conference are accepted.

The Office of Youth Evangelization is sponsoring a Catholic Family Camp weekend June 23-25 at Casa Betania near Tyler, featuring nationally known Catholic speaker Cooper Ray. There will be family activities, Mass and adoration, formation opportunities, campfires, games and skits, and much more! This will be an opportunity to help your family grow closer to one another and to Christ. For more information, see the youth office website here.

The Tyler Diocesan Council of Catholic Women has launched a Rosary Crusade for 2017, calling upon Our Lady of Lourdes to intercede on behalf of the sick, the unborn, families, religious liberty, and more. To see the suggested dates of prayer, see the flyer here. For more information, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Catholic Charities-Diocese of Tyler is participating in the East Texas Giving Day to raise funds for its programs benefitting the poor and vulnerable of our Diocese. East Texas Giving Day is an 18-hour day of giving that provides critical funding for our area nonprofits. The purpose of an area-wide Giving Day is to bring the region together on one day and as one community, raising money and awareness for East Texas nonprofits. This initiative, organized by East Texas Communities Foundation (ETCF), provides citizens an easy platform to support the mission of local nonprofits that serve our many communities. The Giving Day is Tuesday, April 25, 6 a.m.-midnight, but donations can be pre-scheduled anytime from April 10-April 25 by visiting the East Texas Giving Day website.

Catholic Charities-Diocese of Tyler is seeking volunteers for the Parish Nurse Ministry. Part-time RNs wanted to practice within Catholic churches in East Texas. 8 hrs. per week $20/hr. Flexible hours. Please submit resumes via email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. For information, call Catholic Charities at 903 258-9492 or see the website.

Catholic Charities-Diocese of Tyler will offer free GED classes (High School Equivalency) starting soon. Classes will be held twice a week at Catholic Charities 202 W. Front St. Tyler, TX. Call today, 903-258-9492.

Support Catholic Charities-Diocese of Tyler through Amazon.com. When ordering from Amazon, go to smile.amazon.com and choose Catholic Charities, Diocese of Tyler, as the recipient of the donation from the purchase.

The Maria Goretti Network is a peer ministry group for survivors of abuse and their families. The East Texas Chapter of the Maria Goretti Network meets the third Saturday of every month in the Cathedral Office meeting room (not the Cathedral Center) at 7 p.m. For information, contact Peggy Hammett, 903-592-1617, ext. 19, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Catholic East Texas, the diocesan magazine, is online! Share the link to our full-color publication with family and friends. The magazine is an evangelical publication designed to implement Bishop Strickland’s vision for sharing the beauty of Catholic teaching, history, culture, spirituality, and liturgy in a way that makes our ancient faith attractive to both Catholics and non-Catholics in Northeast Texas. Every article, column, and review in the magazine is written by the clergy, religious, and lay faithful of the Diocese of Tyler. Access the magazine online here.

Athens

St. Edward Church. The faith formation Easter egg hunt is Wednesday, April 19, at 6 p.m. Please bring your Easter baskets.

Las siguientes clases bautismales serán el Lunes, 24 de Abril de 6-8 p.m. Donación: $20 por pareja solo se programarán bautizos el segundo y cuarto sabado del mes. Si desea mas información o registrarse favor de llamar al 903-675-2509 en horas de oficina.

Join us for Bible Study after the noon Mass on Wednesdays. We are studying “Follow Me: Meeting Jesus in the Gospel of John.” For information, contact Ron Williams at 903-288-0013.

St. Vincent de Paul needs you. If you can volunteer 1-5 hours a week, you can give comfort to our friends and neighbors in crisis. Attend a meeting (1st Wednesday of the month after the noon Mass) or call 903-675-0076.

Come and join us at a YOUTH 2000 Retreat for a fun, faith-filled Eucharistic centered retreat for youth (ages 13-18), led by the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal, April 21-23, here at St. Edward’s. The YOUTH 2000 Retreat includes lively music, inspiring talks led by the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal, a time for fellowship and fun, sharing the faith, personal testimonies, panel discussions, Mass, Eucharistic Adoration, Reconciliation. YOUTH 2000, a Eucharistic centered Retreat, leads young people to seek a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Through talks, music, adoration, prayer, workshops, fellowship, the Sacrament of Reconciliation, and the celebration of the Mass, the young people deepen their love and understanding of the Catholic faith, and encounter the power and richness of God’s love and mercy. This Retreat brings young people to know the joy of a life lived in the worship of God and in service to God’s people. This weekend Retreat empowers them to go forth with renewed faith, to be witnesses to the Faith, to share the Good News and to be the evangelizers of the New Evangelization. Cost is $25 per person. For more info, please email Jessica Bentley, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

We are offering confirmation classes for anyone 5th grade and older who has not received the sacrament of confirmation. Classes are Saturday, April 1 and April 8. Both sessions are required. Registration is Tuesday, March 28 at 7 p.m. For information, call Zoila Hunt at 903-677-1922.

Atlanta

St. Catherine of Siena Church. Please help us restock our food pantry so we can continue to serve the hungry in our midst. Please bring canned meats and fish, bags of potatoes, cereal, oatmeal, peanut butter and preserves, crackers, soups, lentils, and juices.

Buffalo

St. Kateri Tekakwitha Church. The parish spring cleaning day is Saturday, April 22, beginning at 10 a.m.

We will celebrate Divine Mercy Sunday April 23 at 3 p.m. with confessions and a holy hour.

A Quinceañera platica is scheduled for May 6, 9 a.m.-noon.

The youth retreat is April 8.

Our Catholic Summer University will be June 5-9, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. each day.

Crockett

St. Francis of the Tejas Church. The St. Francis Community Crawfish Boil is Sunday April 23, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. $20 per person. Come join us for great food and fellowship!

The last day of formation will be May 21 with confirmation and first Communion meeting on May 28 for final reconciliation before receiving the sacraments.

Scholarship applications are available in the church office for all graduating high school seniors. Deadline is May 5.

Ethics and Integrity recertification will be April 22 in both English and Spanish.

Little Rock Scripture Study meets Sundays in the hall, 2-3:30 p.m. We are studying the Gospel of Luke.

Holy Mass from the sanctuary of St. Francis of the Tejas is broadcast Sundays at 5 p.m. on KIVY Channel 16.

Diboll

Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe Parroquia. Invito a todas las personas que están interesadas en aprendar más sobre la fe y la Sagrada Biblia los Miércoles después de a misa a 6 p.m. en el Templo Parroquial.

Jueves a las 6:30 p.m. inicia con la Santa Misa. Grupo de Oración Huellas en la Arena and Come Lord Jesus.

Emory

St. John the Evangelist Church. First Friday each month the sanctuary is open for adoration with exposition of the Blessed Sacrament from 8:15 a.m.-6 p.m.

El primer viernes de cada mes, el santuario está abierto para la adoración con la exposición del Santísimo Sacramento de 8:15 am a 6:00 pm.

Bishop Joseph E. Strickland will celebrate confirmation June 10.

Flint

St. Mary Magdalene Church. We will have a special celebration in honor of Divine Mercy Sunday, April 23. Please come and join in prayer and ask for God’s mercy on us and on the whole world. We need his mercy now more than ever. The celebration will include procession and Chaplet of Divine Mercy after the 9 a.m., 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m Masses. After the Chaplet there will be food, live music, bounce houses, water slide, and more activities for the whole family! Breakfast – eggs, sausage, pancakes, juice, and coffee – is $5 plate or $25 for a family of 5 or more. Lunch choices include brisket tacos, gorditas, flautas, burgers or hot dogs. All come with chips, drink, and dessert. Plates are $6 each or $35 for a family of 5 or more. Cash, checks or credit cards will be accepted.

Una celebración especial en honor a la Divina Misericordia, 23 de Abril. Por favor únase a nosotros en oración y pidamos a Dios su Misericordia por nosotros y el mundo entero. Ahora mas que nunca necesitamos de Su Misericordia. El Ministerio Alas nos acompañará durante la celebración! 1:30 pm, Misa; 2:30 pm, procesión con la Imagen de la Divina Misericordia; 3:00 pm, Coronilla a la Divina Misericordia. Después de la Coronilla tendremos: comida, musica, brincolines, resbabadilla de agua y mas para toda la familia! Comida: tacos de brisket, gorditas, flautas, hamburguesas o hot dogs. Todos incluyen, bebida, papitas y postre. $6 platillo o $35 por familia de 5+ Puede pagar con efectivo, cheques o tarjeta.

Registration for our Middle School Mission trip to Catholic Heart Work Camp in New Braunfels July 2nd-8th is open! This trip is for current 7th and 8th graders. See Brian for registration.

We have a large need for more volunteer help in our elementary, middle, and high school ministries. If you feel like you can contribute in any of these ministries, please pray about it and talk to Brian, our Children and Student Minister.

Frankston

St. Charles Borromeo Church. The LOSC has three $500 scholarships available to students of junior/community college or college/university. Applications are available at the back of the church or in the church office. Deadline for submission is Monday, May 1.

Divine Mercy Sunday is April 23. A Holy Hour in honor of Divine Mercy beginning at 3 p.m. will be celebrated at Saints Peter and Paul Chapel. Father Jonathon Frels will lead the celebration with praying the Chaplet of Divine Mercy, the Praises of Divine Mercy, prayers for Pope Francis, Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, Benediction, and confessions. All are invited and encouraged to attend.

The Men’s Club will sponsor a Pancake Breakfast Sunday, April 30, after the 9 a.m. Mass. Come support their good works and enjoy a yummy breakfast!

Eucharistic Adoration is every Wednesday from 6-7:30 p.m. Come spend a little time with Jesus.

We are now collecting toilet paper and paper towels for our food pantry patrons. Please bring your donation to church the weekend of April 29-30.

Gun Barrel City

St. Jude Church. Adoration is after 8:30 a.m. Mass every Friday.

The Cenacle Prayer Group meets every Tuesday after 8 a.m. Mass in the chapel to pray. All are invited to join us.

Holly Lake

Holy Spirit Church. We need a large group of volunteers to do some spring cleaning on and in our church grounds, windows, cleaning meditation garden, including weeding, raking pine needles, painting of benches, planting, etc. We will meet Saturday, April 22, at 8:30 a.m. Please bring rakes, cleaning clothes, ladders, etc. Please sign the sheet in the narthex. The more volunteers we have, the less time it will take to complete the different jobs.

Divine Mercy Sunday is April 23. We will pray the Chaplet of Divine Mercy Chaplet at 3 p.m.

The next pastoral council meeting is Wednesday, April 26, at 6 p.m.

Exposition is every Tuesday, 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. We pray for peace in our nation.

Jefferson

Immaculate Conception Church. We are trying to bring food to church every week for those in need who come to our Immaculate Conception Catholic Community for help and assistance. Our canned foods offerings help keep our St. Vincent de Paul food pantry open and active. We are blessed to be able to look for and to find and to feed Christ in our brothers and sisters who are in need. We are called to recognize the truth that we are completely and totally dependent on God for all the needs of our lives. And we hopefully do recognize our own need and hunger for Christ.

Longview

St. Mary Catholic School. St. Mary Catholic School is enrolling for the 2017-2018 academic year. St. Mary is a college preparatory PreK3-12 program focusing on academic excellence and with a program that includes fine arts and competitive athletics. To schedule a tour, call 903-753-1657. For information about the program or tuition, call principal Amy Blalock, 903-918-7182, or Melinda Dunn, 903-806-0175, or see the website.

A Knight to Remember Gala with dinner, dance, and silent auction will be Saturday, May 13, 6:30 p.m. at the Summit Club, 3700 Judson Road. Tickets are $80 each, and can be purchased on line at www.stmaryslgv.org. Raffle tickets are $25 and can be purchased from any school family or from the church office. Don’t miss your chance to win a Dodge Challenger. All proceeds benefit the students and programs at St. Mary Catholic School.

St. Mary Church. The Catholic Daughters of the Americas Court St. Bridget #2269 is offering a $500 scholarship to any young Catholic woman who is a high school senior or college student. Applications are in the church office and are due April 30. Applicants are asked to write on one of the following subjects: what the Eucharist means to you; how being Catholic brings joy to you and to others; your Catholic mentor. Applications for the Dolores Kohlman Memorial Scholarship may also be emailed to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Please include name, phone number, and email.

The Catholic Daughters end-of-the-year dinner and business meeting will be Monday, May 15, at 6:30 p.m. All Catholic women 18 and older are invited to learn more about the organization.

The Knights of Columbus scholarship drawing will be April 29 in the West Fellowship Hall. Tickets are $5 each and can be purchased from any Knight or from the church office.

The St. Nicholas Bazaar is collecting homemade jams and jellies for the 2017 bazaar. Bring donations to the church office. Please label and leave your name and phone number. For information, contact Margaret at 903-452-3474.

Discover the richness of the Mass. Our adult Sunday school class has begun a new series called “A Biblical Walk Through the Mass.” We will come to know and understand the Mass as never before and learn the rich meanings behind what we say and do during the liturgy. Please join us in the Parish Center, Room 302. All are welcome! For more information contact Karen Scibona at 903-353-3261 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

High school students are invited to be part of Ski Retreat 2018, Jan. 12-15, 2018, in Durango, Colo., at Purgatory Mountain and Silverpick Lodge. Cost is $700, with monthly payments of $65. For information, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Our Bereavement Committee is looking for some new volunteers to help with meals for families following a funeral. Please call Waynell Kuhlman at 903-757-5904 if you are interested in this ministry of compassion.

St. Mary’s Teen Connection meets the first and third Wednesdays of the month. Come join us, 7:30-9 p.m. in the parish hall, for fellowship, faith, food, and fun.

St. Mary’s Middle School Youth Group will meet on the second and fourth Wednesday of every month 5:30-7 p.m. in the Parish Center. All middle school students are invited. Let’s get together to love God, love others and make disciples!

An adult confirmation class for those adults who have not yet received the sacrament will be offered on Wednesday, April 26, at 7 p.m. in the parish hall.

Gluten Free hosts are available at all our Masses for people with celiac disease. Please see the instituted acolyte or deacon before Mass to request a gluten-free host. Those hosts will be consecrated separately from the other hosts. Please go to the instituted acolyte or deacon you informed to receive that host for Holy Communion.

Young Adults is starting a new series in room 304 in the Parish Center. Free childcare is provided! Catholic Atheist will look at five specific ways in which we profess God, but then act and think as if he doesn’t exist. We meet every Sunday.

St. Matthew Church. We will celebrate Divine Mercy Sunday April 23, with benediction at 3 p.m.

Monthly confessions for students in faith formation are available Tuesdays and Thursdays at 5 p.m. Parents also are invited to make use of the sacrament as an example to their children.

The celebration of confirmation will be Saturday, May 6, at 9 a.m., and Saturday, May 13, at 9 a.m. and noon (Spanish).

The celebration of first Communion will be Saturday and Sunday, May 27 and 28. Families may choose any of the Masses on these dates. Please contact Freeda in the Faith Formation Office.

Enrollment is open now for vacation Bible school, June 12-16. Cost is $10 per child and includes a T-shirt.

Enrollment is open for faith formation for the year 2017-2018. Cost by the end of May is $10 per child; June-August, $20 per child; and $30 per child after August.

Lufkin

St. Andrew the Apostle Church. Calling all 8th Graders! Please join the Edge Middle School Youth Group on Saturday, April 29, from 11 a.m.-7 p.m. at the Parish Hall at St. Andrew’s Catholic Church. We will be hosting a retreat for all 8th graders preparing for high school and discussing our hopes, fears, and faith life. Cost is $20 per student. Contact Katie Glanton at704-962-0097, Rose Juan at 936-676-6658, or the church office to register.

Deep East Texas Right to Life will be placing an ad in the Mother’s Day issue of the Lufkin Daily News thanking Moms for the gift of life. For a $5 donation we will add your name or your family name to the ad. We will have tables after Mass on April 29-30 and May 6-7 to take names and donations, or you can contact Stefani Brunner at 936-240-8367.

Please join us in the recitation of the rosary after the 10 a.m. Mass Sunday, April 30, in the Chapel. Place your intentions in the box to be offered during the rosary. Everyone is welcome.

If you are graduating from high school or college in 2017, please send us your name and mailing address. You may call the office to report this information during usual office hours or you can e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

St. Andrew’s Youth Group would like to invite all middle school and high school students to our Life and Edge Nights on Wednesdays, 6:30-8 pm, at the church.

Godparents and parents who wish to have their children baptized must attend a baptism preparation class scheduled every second and third Friday of the month at 7 p.m. in Spanish. English classes are by appointment. All baptisms are held the third Saturday of the month at 11 a.m. Please contact the parish office 2-3 months prior to register. Please bring a copy of the child’s birth certificate.

Padres y Padrinos que desean tener a sus hijos bautizados deben atender dos clases de preparación bautismal. Serán cada segundo y tercer viernes del mes a 7 pm. Todos los bautismos se llevarán a cabo el tercer sábado del mes a 11am. Por favor llamar a la oficina 2-3 meses antes del bautismo. Traer una copia del certificado de nacimiento de su hijo.

St. Patrick Catholic School. Registration for the 2017-2018 academic year is open. St. Patrick is a co-educational private Catholic school serving students of all faiths in grades PreK3-8. We offer exceptional educational opportunities to our students and are dedicated to their spiritual, academic and physical development. Our programs emphasize religious education, advanced curriculum, technology and physical fitness. Students learn the skills that empower them to excel in today’s society. St. Patrick is the only school in the Lufkin area to offer the Kumon math program and to be designated as a PreK Center of Excellence, a gold standard in high-quality PreK by the State of Texas. For more information, call 936-634-6719 or see the website.

St. Patrick Church. Eucharistic Ministers are needed for all English Masses, especially the 5 pm Sunday Mass and the 5:30 pm Saturday Mass. If you are interested, please call Angela Quillin at 936-632-7688 after 5 or let the office know. Training will be scheduled soon for all who have not been trained within the last 2 years.

The next English-language baptism class is Thursday, April 20, at 6 p.m. in the Faith Formation Hall.

The 60-5 Club invites those age 55 and over to join us Tuesday, April 25, at noon for a potluck lunch in the Faith Formation Hall. Come socialize with us. We also will be playing the “LCR” games so bring $3.00 and you may be the “big winner” for the day! We look forward to seeing you there. For any questions please contact Mrs. Edna Garza at 936-675- 5761.

Deep East Texas Right to Life will be placing an ad in the Mother’s Day issue of the Lufkin Daily News thanking Moms for the gift of life. For a $5 donation we will add your name or your family name to the ad. We will be in the foyer of the church after Mass on April 29-30 and May 6-7 to take names and donations, or you can contact Stefani Brunner at 936-240-8367.

Our youth group is planning on doing a garage sale. If would like to donate clothes, toys or any item they can sell please bring them to the Faith Formation Hall on Mondays at 6 p.m.

Father Gavin is looking for an adult willing to help in training and scheduling altar servers. Training can be provided. Altar servers help our Mass go smoothly so everyone can join in prayer with fewer distractions. If you would be willing to help, please contact the church office or Father Gavin.

The St. Benedict Prayer Group invites everyone to come every Tuesday, 7:30-9 p.m., to praise the Lord.

The Ladies of the Rosary group meets Tuesdays at 10 a.m. in the parish office. Join us and make mission rosaries. For more information, contact Mrs. Wanda Brandon at 936-824-3253 or Mrs. Bea Treviño at 936-829-2209.

Madisonville

St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church. Students in sacramental preparation will celebrate their first confession Saturday, April 22, at 10 a.m. Please keep them in your prayers.

First Eucharist and confirmation will be celebrated at both Masses Sunday, May 7.

Confessions are available on Saturday mornings 11 a.m.-noon or by appointment. Just call or text.

Malakoff

Mary Queen of Heaven Church. The Rosary Group meets on Fridays. During Lent, the rosary will be cited starting at 5:20 p.m. at the church with Stations to follow.

Refreshments are served after the 10 a.m. Mass on Sundays in the parish hall. Come join us, and get to know your parish family.

Marshall

St. Joseph Church. The Knights of Columbus spaghetti dinner for scholarships will be Sunday, May 11, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Cost is $8 a plate. Tickets can be purchased from any Knight.

All graduating high school seniors of Marshall and surrounding areas are invited to give your name, address, and school name to the office. We will be mailing invitations to our upcoming Senior Mass and lunch soon.

The food bank is requesting cans of soup. Please help us feed the hungry in our midst.

Hot meals are served to those in need Tuesdays, 4:30-5:30 p.m. in the parish hall.

Travel with Deacon John Sargent to Ireland June 23-July 2. Cost is $3,700 per person. To register, call 855-842-8001 or 508-340-9370, or register online at www.proximotravel.com.

Mineola

St. Peter the Apostle Church. Faith formation classes will resume Sunday, April 23.

St. Peter’s Outreach will host a breakfast Sunday, April 30, at 10 a.m. The next SPO meeting is Monday, May 1, at 6 p.m.

Mount Pleasant

St. Michael Church. Come and Join our Apologetics/Bible Study Wednesdays in St. Michael Hall from 9-10:15 a.m. and 6-7:30 p.m. Everyone is invited to come and participate in learning the word of the Lord.

We are trying to update our parish records. If there are still families who need to register as members of this parish, update personal information, or wish to have offering envelopes for the year 2017, please come by or call the parish office as soon as possible at 903-572-5227.

Mount Vernon

Sacred Heart Church. We will celebrate Father Freddy’s 30th anniversary as a priest Friday, April 21, at 7 p.m., with a Mass and reception. Please pick up your personal invitation in the foyer. Please RSVP as it is needed for the reception. Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

There will be a “Coleadero” at the Tellez Family Ranch Saturday, April 29. Raffle tickets are $5, and prizes include a 43” television, a $75 gift certificate, a $50 gift certificate, an outdoor statue of Our Lady of Guadalupe, and a blender. All proceeds will go to the church. We are looking for volunteers in order to make this a successful event. Please contact Pedro Valle or Tony Macias if you would like to help.

We will have our end of the year celebration for Faith Formation and also celebrate “Kids Day” on Wednesday, May 3. If you would like to donate food or candy please contact Cristina Narvaez, Margarita Torres, or Corazon Gonzalez.

Confirmations will be Saturday, May 27, at 5:30 p.m.

Nacogdoches

Sacred Heart Church. Sacred Heart Outstanding Catholic Kids (SHOCK) youth group meets Wednesday nights, 6:45-8:30 p.m.

All young people in grades 6-12 are invited to join us in the “Upper Room” for faith, fun, and fellowship. For information, please contact Rebecca at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Our food pantry is open on the second Tuesday of every month, 9 a.m.-noon. All monetary support is appreciated, and special envelopes are now available in the vestibule for your support. Help us feed the hungry in our midst.

St. Mary’s Chapel, Stephen F. Austin State University. The music ministry St. Mary’s Catholic Campus Ministry will be giving a 6:00 pm choir concert of sacred music at Sacred Heart Church on Saturday, April 29, 2017. The “Lord of the Dance” Eastertide music celebration will follow the 5:00 pm vigil Mass with Father Christopher V. Ruggles of Sacred Heart and Father Denzil Vithanage of St. Mary’s con-celebrating and with the combined choir-led music ministries of both St. Mary’s and Sacred Heart Church. “Lord of the Dance” is open to the public with free-will donations accepted towards a planned 2018 spring break choir monastery retreat. A reception for all who attend will immediately follow in the Margil Center. Sacred Heart Church is located at 2508 Appleby Sand Road in Nacogdoches, TX 75965. For more information, contact Linda Parr at 936-715-5148 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The 3rd annual Spring Block Party is Saturday, May 6. To help out or to sponsor an activity or item, contact Austin Thurman, 972-765-8335, orb email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Palestine

Sacred Heart Church. Adult Christian Initiation classes are held each Wednesday, 6-8 p.m. in the Activity Building.

The Ladies Auxiliary Appreciation Dinner is Thursday, April 20, at 6 p.m. in the Activity Building. Please join us for a meal and the opportunity to visit with one another as we say “thank you” to parishioners and their families for all they do for the Lord and our church.

We are taking reservations for an 11-day pilgrimage to Fatima, Lourdes, and the Camino de Santiago in November. Cost is $2,999 per person, and registration ends June 1. We will celebrate the 100th anniversary of Our Lady’s apparitions to three children in Fatima, relive the story of Lourdes, visit the walled city of Avila, tour Madrid and the Prado Museum, and visit Santiago de Compostela, the burial place of St. James. If we do not get 10 reservations, the pilgrimage will be canceled. Contact the church office or Father Rajain Mathias for more information.

Texarkana

Sacred Heart Church. We have faith formation for all ages Wednesdays, 6:30-7:45 p.m.

Father Mike Adams will lead an Advent pilgrimage to the Holy Land Nov. 27-Dec.8. The 12-day “Where Christ Was Born Tour” will include visits to Tel Aviv and Nazareth, Capernaum, Cana and Mount Tabor, Jerusalem, Bethlehem, and the Dead Sea. Cost is $2,920 per person without airfare and $4,420 all-inclusive. A deposit of $1,000 per person is required at the time of booking. For information, call John or Natalie at 800-675-9088, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or see the website.

Catholic Charities is seeking to expand the Parish Nursing Program in neighboring areas (Atlanta, New Boston, etc.). Part-time nurses are wanted to work in a parish setting eight hours a week at $20/hour. The hours are flexible. Please submit resumes via email to Jennie Pierce MSN, APRN-CNS, Parish Nurse Coordinator, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. For information, see the Catholic Charities website or call 903-372-3229.

Learn the Spanish language. Lessons in basic, intermediate, and advanced are available. Lessons are $10 each. For information, call Betty Rodriguez, 903-691-7931.

Tyler

Bishop Gorman Catholic Schools. Registration for the 2017-2018 academic year is open. Bishop Gorman is a college preparatory 6-12 program that focuses on academic excellence with an emphasis on Catholic Christian formation. Bishop Gorman is a Top 50 Catholic High School, 2005-2015; a Blue Ribbon “Excellence in Education” Award Winner 1998 by the U.S. Department of Education; TAPPS 3A Overall State Champions 2001 and 2002; TAPPS 3A Academic State Champions, 1999, 2000, and 2002; and Middle School PSIA State Academic Champions 2014. For more information, call the school at 903-561-2424 or see the website.

Giving to Gorman has never been easier. Let your Amazon purchases help Bishop Gorman. Bishop Gorman is part of the Amazon Smile program. Amazon Smile pays .5% of your purchase to Bishop Gorman. To participate, go to smile.amazon.com and log in using your normal Amazon username and password. Set up an Amazon account first if you do not already have one. Once on Amazon Smile, search for Bishop Gorman Catholic School as your charity of choice and continue shopping. Each subsequent time you shop on Amazon, start at smile.amazon.com instead of the usual Amazon website.

St. Gregory Cathedral School. The annual St. Gregory musical is Thursday, May 4, at 6 p.m. in Caldwell Auditorium. The theme for this year is Turn the Page. Reserved seating is still available. Call the school at 903-595-4109 for more information.

Registration for the 2017-2018 academic year is open. St. Gregory is Tyler’s oldest private, Christian elementary school, serving grades PreK-5 and the city’s only U.S. Department of Education Blue Ribbon School, a distinction earned by scoring in the top 15 percent of the nation on national standardized tests.  St. Gregory has the distinction of being a three-time Blue Ribbon school, one of the very few in the nation to achieve this honor. For more information, call the school at 903-595-4109, or see the website.

Tyler Junior College Apache Catholics Campus Ministry. We meet Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m. in TJC’s Jenkins Hall, first-floor conference room. Come join us for weekly liturgies and a pizza supper. For information about the group, contact Deacon Bill Necessary, 903-780-3519 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

John Paul the Great Catholic Campus Ministry, University of Texas at Tyler. We have Mass, adoration, confessions, and the rosary throughout the week. See our schedule on our website.

Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. Divine Mercy Sunday is April 23. A Holy Hour in honor of Divine Mercy beginning at 3 p.m. will be celebrated at the Chapel of Sts. Peter and Paul Chapel. Father Jonathon Frels will lead the celebration with praying the Chaplet of Divine Mercy, the Praises of Divine Mercy, prayers for Pope Francis, Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, Benediction, and confessions.

Baptism Preparation classes in English will be held on Mondays, May 8 and 15, 6:30–8:30 p.m. in the Cathedral Center. Parents and Godparents are required to attend Baptism Preparation Classes. If you have questions please call 903-592-1617 ext. 130, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Please bring a copy of the child’s birth certificate to the class.

SAVE THE DATE FOR VBS! Plan to join us June 5-9 from 9 a.m.-noon for Maker Fun Factory VBS, where kids will discover not only that God made them the way they are, but for a purpose too! We need your help to make this a great week of fun and faith-filled activities. Please contact Jill Coan at 678-571-7926 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. regarding volunteer opportunities or for further information.

We will have an English Ethics and Integrity recertification on Sunday April , 5:30-7 p.m. in the Cathedral Center. We will have an English basic certification on Sunday May 7, 2017 (moved from the original date of May 14 because of Mothers Day) from 3:30-6:30 p.m. in the Cathedral Center. Please register with Veronica at 903-592-1617, ext. 117, or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. There is plenty of room so please just leave your name so we can plan on handouts. The Diocese of Tyler requires that all church employees and volunteers who work with children or vulnerable adults have Ethics and Integrity certification on file in the Chancery.

The Catholic Daughters of the Americas  annual Cafe Italiano is Saturday, April 29, 5-8 p.m. Cost is $8 for adults $4 for children 6 and under. Join us for food, fun, and fellowship. We also will have a silent auction and Country Store. Proceeds benefit our charities.

The garage sale to benefit the Society of St. Vincent de Paul is Friday, April 28, and Saturday, April 29, beginning at 8 a.m., at 342 Robert E. Lee St., Tyler, 75703. Sale includes gift items, baby and infant supplies, bake ware, silver and glassware. Proceeds benefit the Society’s efforts to help the poor in our area.

The Cathedral once again is able to offer faith formation for children with special needs. We have two certified teachers who have dedicated themselves to this educational ministry. These classes are for any student with a special need or who might benefit from some extra help. For more information, please contact Peggy Hammett at 903-592-1617, ext. 119, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

A Rosary Holy Hour Held is weekly on Tuesdays at 11 a.m. in the Adoration Chapel at Saints Peter and Paul. All are invited to join us. For more information, contact Susan Mills 903-780-2935 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

St. Joseph the Worker Church. Join us Sunday, April 23, immediately after the 10:30 a.m. Holy Mass for our first parish Divine Mercy Celebration. We will have prayer, with exposition and benediction of the Blessed Sacrament, confessions, the rosary and Divine Mercy Chaplet; food, with Kielbasa and sauerkraut and anything your family wishes to share with the community; and fellowship as we continue rejoicing at the resurrection of the Lord. For more information please contact Monica Lewis, 903-352-7079 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The Little Flowers Girls’ Club, a club for Catholic girls ages 5-10, meets the first Saturday of every month through the month of May, beginning with Mass at 9 a.m.

The Little Women Hospitality Club for Catholic girls ages 11-18 meets the first Saturday of every month through the month of May, beginning with Mass at 9 a.m.

St. Joseph the Worker’s Homeschool Group is a parish-based support group for all mothers.  We meet once a month to plan activities for our children, prayer, reading to encourage us in our vocation, sharing and fellowship.  If you would like to join or receive email of planned events, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Whitehouse

Prince of Peace Church. Springfest 2017 is May 13. We need your help and support to make it a joyful community event. Please contact any of the following if you can help: Jim and Annette Krause, 713-594-4484; Linda Rossler, 903-839-7138; Tony Zapata, 903-530-3639; or Julie Miller, 903-245-1223.

Catholic Charities-Diocese of Tyler will participate in the second annual East Texas Giving Day Tuesday, April 25.

The Giving Day, sponsored by East Texas Communities Foundation, is an 18-hour period of giving that provides critical funding for local non-profits. According to the Giving Day website, the effort last year raised $479,000 for non-profits in the 32 counties served by East Texas Communities Foundation.

Though the official Giving Day is April 25, 6 a.m.-midnight, donors can “pre-give,” or schedule a donation, through the website.

The day is “an awareness opportunity for non-profits across East Texas, a chance for them to get their message across,” said Kathy Harry, Catholic Charities executive director. “If donors are interested, they simply need to visit the East Texas Giving Day website or the Catholic Charities-Diocese of Tyler website, which is ccetx.org.”

This is the first year Catholic Charities has participated. Donations to the agency will help fund its programs benefitting the poor, the vulnerable, and the marginalized in East Texas.

“We’re really focused on helping parishes throughout the Diocese of Tyler” in their efforts to feed the hungry in East Texas, Harry said. “We now have over 30 parishes participating. Catholic Charities is providing some financial assistance, as well as mentorship for those that would like to start a food pantry and walking them through that process, or just some simple ideas for hunger relief efforts within their own particular parishes.”

Catholic churches are often the first stop for individuals or families seeking assistance with food, and the characteristically small and rural parishes in East Texas are no exception.

“Many of our priests will tell you that people knock on their doors at all times, day and night, needing assistance with feeding their families,” Harry said. “We’re trying to give them some concrete ways and ideas that they can accomplish that. We’d love for every parish to be able to participate as they’re able and to have the funds to continue to sustain it.”

Many of the parishes in the sprawling and largely rural Diocese of Tyler are small, with limited resources. Yet, with help from Catholic Charities, and the $500 grants the agency provides, even they are finding ways to serve the needy in their areas.

“A $500 grant will go a long way in a small community,” Harry said. “They may not be able to start a food pantry, but they may have a volunteer who could go to the local grocery store and buy staple goods. We’d encourage the pastor or church office to bag those goods and have them available for those who come to the door. They have food there, ready to distribute. Or they might provide some sort of coupon for a local restaurant or eatery at least to provide the person a meal or two to tide them over. So even in the very small parishes, we think we can make an impact to provide hunger relief as much as they’re able.

“Several of our churches are involved in a community-wide hunger relief effort, a food pantry for their county or their immediate area. And the way this typically works is that the churches that participate commit either a certain amount of manpower or financial resources to help sustain the pantry. And the Catholic Charities assistance helps relieve some of that responsibility from the parish so they can then fulfill their commitment to the community endeavor. And that’s another wonderful way to achieve multiple aspects of our giving and our need to reach out to the community.”

Catholic Charities partners with the East Texas Food Bank in Tyler. Through Catholic Charities, parishes, or the food pantries or soup kitchens to which they contribute, can set up accounts at the food bank to purchase food in bulk at a discounted price for distribution back in their communities. Every dollar spent at the Food Bank for pantry assistance provides eight nutritious meals to individuals and families.

Catholic Charities grants also have helped parishes purchase refrigeration units and other equipment, and the agency stands ready to provide whatever technical or educational assistance parishes might require.

“We even have volunteers from one food pantry, at St. Charles Borromeo in Frankston, who are willing to go to other parishes for mentoring,” Harry said. “Theirs is a relatively new pantry, but it’s really taken off. They’ve offered to go to other parishes and walk them through the process.”

The need for hunger relief is as real, and as urgent, in East Texas as it is as it is throughout the rest of the nation, and the world. Statistics from the East Texas Food Bank state that:

  • 1 in 4– East Texas children are food insecure;
  • 1 in 5– East Texas adults are food insecure;
  • 473,000– East Texans are “at-risk of hunger,” according to the American Communities Survey.

Additionally, the food bank’s 2014 study, Hunger in America, found that among East Texans surveyed:

  • 75 percent made a choice between paying for food and paying for utilities;
  • 72 percent made a choice between paying for food and paying for transportation;
  • 76 percent made a choice between paying food and paying for health care.

“My sense is that most people are not aware of the need on a daily basis,” said Harry. “Often, we think of hunger relief at Thanksgiving and Christmas, and of providing a meal for people then. A lot of efforts are made during those holidays. But the reality is that hunger exists 365 days a year, and that’s the message that we need to communicate. There is a severe need for hunger relief throughout East Texas. And that also leads to other medical needs if people are going without food, clothing, and shelter, and other basic care needs.”

Driven by Catholic social teaching, Catholic Charities seeks to fulfill Christ’s command to feed the hungry, care for the sick, and welcome the immigrant (Matthew 25:35-40).

“In its simplest form, the Catholic Church is here to serve the poor,” Harry said. “Pope Francis reiterates that day in and day out. Catholic Charities for the Diocese of Tyler simply echoes that. We’re here to serve the poor, the vulnerable, the marginalized, those who are in greatest need in our region. We serve all people, whether Catholic or non-Catholic, just sharing our resources to be able to help those in greatest need.”

Catholic Charities-Diocese of Tyler serves the Body of Christ in East Texas in a number of ways. The agency offers immigration services through low-cost legal assistance and has on staff caseworkers trained and certified by the Department of Justice and Homeland Security. A local law firm, Flowers and Davis works with Catholic Charities and provides its services at minimal cost.

As an extension of its immigration services, the agency is currently offering a GED program, and hopes to expand into citizenship and computer literacy classes.

It also has launched a parish nursing program, placing registered nurses with specialized training in parishes to provide faith-based medical outreach, particularly to people with limited access to health care. The pilot program was established in Sacred Heart Parish in Texarkana, and is scheduled for expansion into the Tyler area in July.

The agency also is launching a program directed at the very smallest of “the least of these,” called Infant Safe Sleep, through which it will provide “baby boxes” crafted by the Baby Box Company to new mothers who do not have a crib, cradle, or bassinette for their infants.

“The tendency is to place that infant in bed with (parents) or with siblings,” Harry said, “and we know that can often be a precursor to SIDS. And there is a high infant morality rate in NE Texas, so we’re hoping to be able to distribute these to all OB providers through hospitals and physicians to all mothers who would like one, at no cost to them.”

And, of course, for the ministry born in the wake of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, disaster preparedness and relief remains an ongoing effort.

The reality is that hunger exists 365 days a year, and that’s the message that we need to communicate.

Yet hunger relief remains a primary focus for Catholic Charities-Diocese of Tyler. And to Harry, who is of Lebanese descent, that emphasis on food is inherently Catholic.

“I think there’s just a very real connection with mind, body, and soul,” she said. “I think that’s pretty much the basis of all that we are as a faith community, as the Catholic community.” In the central act of the Catholic faith, “we gather around the altar, the Eucharistic table, to be nourished by Christ’s body. We know that in order to nourish the mind and nourish the soul, we have to nourish the body. I think those three things are just interwoven and tie together beautifully. That’s the heritage of our church. Think about the Last Supper. Christ sat with the Apostles and they broke bread together. There are so many ways that we see Christ demonstrate God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit through food. It’s all throughout Scripture, and I think that’s mirrored in our culture today in the ways that we go about caring for one another.

“I think, for me, when you think about hunger relief and feeding others, it’s very typical of the culture of the Catholic Church and of the ethnic cultures in our Church. There’s clearly something about the importance of feeding one another, and it certainly ties back to the table of the Eucharist. That is how Christ reached out to all of us, by offering himself as food.

“You have to nourish the body so that we can nourish the soul,” Harry said. “It’s as vital as the air we breathe.”