Que Pasa: News and Notes for May 11

Bishop Joseph E. Strickland will ordain Deacon Jonathon Frels to the priesthood June 11 at 10 a.m. in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. The entire diocese is invited to this day of prayer and celebration.

Deacon Jonathon Frels will be ordained to the priesthood June  11 at 10 a.m. in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Tyler.
Deacon Jonathon Frels will be ordained to the priesthood June 11 at 10 a.m. in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Tyler.

Deacon Frels, 42, is a native of Corpus Christi and a son of Dan and Susan Frels, both deceased. He has a younger brother, Matthew.

He has a bachelor of science in chemistry from Southwest Texas State University and a PhD in chemistry from Texas A&M. He is a seminarian at Pope John XXIII National Seminary in Boston, Mass.

Deacon Frels has lived in East Texas since 2002, when he moved to Longview to work at Eastman Chemical Company there. He has been serving at the cathedral.

World Youth Day pilgrims from throughout the diocese are collecting prayer requests to take with them to Poland. Young people will write the prayers on cloth, and carry them throughout the July 23-Aug. 2 pilgrimage. Go to this website to submit a prayer request. Almost 60 pilgrims from the Diocese of Tyler will be attending WYD 2016 in Krakow.

Deacon Ruben Natera
Deacon Ruben Natera

Deacon Ruben Natera will receive the University of Dallas Lumen Gentium Award July 2 during the 5:30 p.m. Mass in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. Bishop Joseph E. Strickland will present the award, which is given annual by UD to a graduate of the university’s School of Ministry whose established record of outstanding accomplishment reflects the fruit of “theological education for transformative service.” The award honors graduates who have given exemplary service to the local church in general, the work of faith formation in particular, and the larger community, especially the poor and needy.

Deacon Natera, ordained in 2001, has served as co-director for Hispanic Ministries, Vice-Chancellor and Chancellor for Bishop Álvaro Corrada del Rio, SJ, and briefly for Bishop Joseph Strickland, between 2002 and 2012. He has been actively involved in leadership with deacon formation, Hispanic, music, prison, and other ministries in the diocese. He is an adjunct instructor for the UD School of Ministry. is a retired civil engineer from the U.S. Forest Service and retired Civil Engineer Corps Commander from the U.S. Naval Construction Force (Seabees). He and his wife Maria Guadalupe have six children and 16 grandchildren.

The Daughters of Divine Hope will offer an 11:30 a.m. Mass June 13 for clergy celebrating birthdays and ordination anniversaries in those months, and for deceased clergy. The Mass will be celebrated in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, and lunch will follow in the Cathedral Center. Future Mass dates are July 11, Aug. 8, Sept. 12, Oct. 10, Nov. 14, and Dec. 12.

Wellspring, Fransalian Center for Spirituality will host a retreat on the Virtue of Mercy Saturday, May 14, 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.: Fr. Gus is offering a series of monthly retreats on the virtue of Mercy.  Pope Francis has proclaimed an Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy as a special time for the Church, a time when the witness of believers might grow stronger and more effective. Mercy is the virtue that enables us to forgive failures, overlook shortcomings, create harmony and bring peace.  Join us as we strive to learn about God’s mercy and become more merciful in our daily lives.   All are welcome.  No registration is necessary. For more information about our programs and retreats, contact us at 903-839-1280 or retreatsatwellspring@gmail.com, or visit our website.

The diocesan Young Adult Ministry will host a Theology on Tap May 20 at 7:30 p.m. at True Vine Brewing Company in Tyler. All young adults in their 20s and 30s are invited to attend. Other DOTYAM summer events include an Encounter, June 9, and Theology on Tap, June 24; an Encounter, July 7, and Theology on Tap, July 22; an Encounter, Aug. 11, and Theology on Tap, Aug. 25. The group is on Twitter, on Facebook, and on Instagram at @dotyams.

St. Michael Church in Mount Pleasant is hosting a bilingual Choir Formation Program May 13-15 for all choir members in the diocese. The program features Pedro Rubalcava, a nationally known clinician and performer with expertise in various musical styles. He has been directing liturgical music groups for more than 30 years. For the past 26 years, he has been working in professional pastoral ministry in various areas, including liturgy and music, evangelization, youth and young adult ministry, catechetical ministry and RCIA. Pedro received national recognition in 1990 when Amanecer, his bilingual music collection, was nominated for a Grammy award in the Best Mexican/American Performance category. Currently, Pedro is the Director of Hispanic ministries for OCP. He also serves on the executive board of the Instituto Nacional Hispano de Liturgia as the Northwest representative. The program schedule is Friday, May 13, 5-9 p.m., Saturday, May 14, 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m., and Sunday, May 15, 3 p.m. Bilingual Mass at Mt. Pleasant Civic Center.

The diocesan Office for Marriage and Family Life has scheduled a marriage preparation day for June 16 at the chancery in Tyler, and marriage preparation weekends for Sept. 23-25, and Nov. 5-6 (Spanish). For information or to register, contact the office at 903-534-1077, ext. 165, or email mbesze@dioceseoftyler.org.

Msgr. John Brennan, a retired priest of the diocese and former pastor of St. Mary Church in Longview, will be one of the honorees at the June Jamboree, a dinner, dance, and auction benefitting Padua House, a retirement home for priests in San Antonio. The Jamboree will be June 3, 6-11 p.m., at Pedrotti’s North Wind Ranch, 13715 FM 1560 North, Helotes, TX 78023. Tickets are $60 per person. Live music will be performed by the Cactus Country Band. For information or tickets, contact Betty Cronin, 210-820-3211, or Rita Hannan, 210-658-1276. Reservations must be made by May 30.

The diocesan Office of Faith Formation will hold an in-service training day for all faith formation leaders Saturday, Aug. 6, 10 a.m.-3 p.m., in the Cathedral Center in Tyler. These days are essential training for successful parish catechetical programs. Every parish should send the FFL, or someone to represent the parish for training. Call the Office of Faith Formation to register by Friday, August 5 to 903-266-2146 or email lporter@dioceseoftyler.org. There is no fee for this day but pre-registration is required.

Families Anonymous, a support group for those affected by a loved one’s addiction, alcoholism or other destructive behaviors, meets the second Monday of every month at 6:30 p.m. in the parish hall at St. Charles Borromeo Church in Frankston. The group is the only FA chapter in East Texas, and is open to anyone who has known the despair of a loved one’s addiction. Meetings follow the 12-step model, and the anonymity of members is paramount. For information, contact Rick at 817-994-8248 or Kathy at 817-319-9843.

The Maria Goretti Network, a peer ministry group for survivors of abuse and their families, meets the third Sunday of every month in the Cathedral office Meeting Room (not the Cathedral Center) at 7 p.m. For information, call Peggy Hammett, 903-592-1617, ext. 19, or email phammett@thecathedral.info.

Catholic counseling services are now available in the Diocese of Tyler. Simone Key, MA, LPC-I, is on staff at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception to provide faith-based family, marriage, individual and group counseling. Initial phone consultations are free, and services are provided on a sliding fee scale. For information, call 214-640-0651.

To speak with a priest about a possible vocation, call Father Justin Braun at the chancery, 903-534-1077, ext. 171, or email fatherbraun@gmail.com. To speak with a nun, contact Sister Angelica Orozco, EFMS, at the chancery, 903-534-1077, ext. 145, or email sistera@dioceseoftyler.org.

If you are not sending your parish bulletin to Catholic East Texas, please do so. Bulletins are our best source for information about your parish events. Email electronic versions (PDF or Word documents) to sue@catholiceasttexas.com and mail paper versions to Susan De Matteo, Catholic East Texas, 1015 ESE Loop 323, Tyler, TX 75701.

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.

ethics and integrity ad


St. Edward Church.  St. Edward’s Spring Festival is Saturday, May 21, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. at the church. Come join us for food, fun, and music.

Altar server training is scheduled for Saturday, May 14, 9-11:30 a.m.

Ethics and Integrity training classes for basic and recertification will be May 21. Basic training will be at 9 a.m., and recertification will be at noon. Anyone 18 years and older interacting with our children must have Ethic and Integrity certification. Both classes will be in English. Please call Nancy Pitts, 903-681-3040, for more information.

Lector training is scheduled for Thursday, May 26, following 6 p.m. Mass. Anyone who has celebrated confirmation and first Eucharist is welcome. Please pre-register by calling the church office at 903-675-2509 or Kathi Murphy-Boley at 972-467-5092.


St. Kateri Tekakwitha Church. In honor of First Friday and the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, adoration will begin at 6 p.m. after Mass June 3 and end with benediction before the 7 a.m. Mass of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The hours of 7 p.m.-3 a.m. will be completely silent. Every hour throughout the night we will have 20-30 minutes of silence. Everyone is invited to participate. We will provide beverages, but please do not bring food or drink into the church.


St. Leo the Great Church. The parish hosts a Game Night the fourth Saturday of each month at 6 p.m. in the parish hall. Come join us for board games, card games and more, and build community.

The rosary is prayed each Sunday, 30 minutes before Mass. All are invited to pray.


St. Charles Borromeo Church. The SCB Food Pantry will be open to any families needing food Thursday, May 12, 9-11:30 a.m. Please continue to support this effort to feed the hungry in our midst with your time and money.

The Men’s Club will host a fish fry at Ken and Mary Ann Cluley’s home Monday, May 16, starting at 6 p.m. All Men’s Club members and their spouses are invited. All men in the parish 18 or older who are interested in joining are also invited. Please RSVP to Ken Cluley, kdcluley@yahoo.com or 940-704-9629, by Thursday, May 12, if you are planning to attend.

We are always looking for new voices to add to our choir. We practice on Wednesdays and work on four-part music. If you can sing on key, we can teach you to read music. If you don’t have a background in singing four-part music, we can teach you. If you are interested, please contact Lance Brown, 817-680-4392.

Gun Barrel City

St. Jude Church. Students graduating from college, high school, middle school or pre-K will be honored at a Mass May 22 at noon. Please register your graduate on the sheet in the vestibule of the church or call the church office at 903-887-1452.

The St. Jude Women’s Ministry will present a talk on How to be an Amazing Evangelist by Dr. Allison Tobola Low Tuesday, June 7, at 7 p.m. Dr. Low is a primary care sports medicine physician in Tyler and is a lifelong Catholic with a master’s degree in theology from the Augustine Institute in Denver, Colo. She is an adult faith formation and RCIA catechist at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Tyler, and a regional leader for St. Paul Street Evangelization, a national ministry spreading the Catholic faith through street ministry. She has a blog, www.pillarandfoundation.com, and creates videos for children. She also is a columnist for Catholic Stand.

Cave Quest: Following Jesus, the Light of the World, is coming this summer for vacation Bible school. Kids will learn the rock-solid foundation of God’s love through songs, skits, crafts, and games. We are looking for volunteers. If you wish to help, contact Sister Magdalena at 903-887-9795 or the church office at 903-887-1452. An organization meeting is scheduled for May 25 at 6:30 p.m. in the St. Tarcisius Room.

Softball practice for the GBC Halos is every Sunday at 3 p.m. behind the church.

Holly Lake

Holy Spirit Church. The parish picnic is May 15, rain or shine, 2-4 p.m. Knights of Columbus will provide hamburgers, hot dogs, and drinks. Families should sign up in the narthex indicating whether they will bring a covered, dessert or appetizer. For safety’s sake, please do not leave children unattended. Come join us for food and fun.

The Knights of Columbus breakfast will be June 5 after Mass. Cost is $5 for adults, and children eat free.

Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament is every Tuesday, 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m.

Bidding on dinners for the parish fundraiser is open May 14-22. We have seven delectable dinners for four people each, prepared by the talented cooks in our own parish and to be delivered right to your home, up for auction. Please open your hearts and your wallets, and be generous. All proceeds benefit the church. If you will be out of town during those weekends but still wish to participate, contact Diane Laudt, 903-769-9056, or email your bid to dlaudt@hotmail.com.


National Day of Prayer – Students and faculty from St. Mary Catholic School in Longview attended the National Day of Prayer observance in Longview May 4. Principal Amy Allen, top photo, center, and students recite the Pledge of Allegiance at the event's opening. St. Mary students closed the observance by singing “God Bless America.”
National Day of Prayer – Students and faculty from St. Mary Catholic School in Longview attended the National Day of Prayer observance in Longview May 4. Principal Amy Allen, top photo, center, and students recite the Pledge of Allegiance at the event’s opening. St. Mary students closed the observance by singing “God Bless America.”

St. Mary Church. The church will recognize graduating seniors at all Masses the weekend of May 14-15. Please bring a photo of your senior along with a short biography, including plans after graduation, to Susan Wells, Lea Kottwitz, or the church office prior to that weekend.

Father Kusmirek will lead a pilgrimage to the Holy Land Sept. 19-30. Reservations are being taken now. Walk where Jesus walked, and pass through the doors of St. Peter’s Basilica during this Year of Mercy. For information, call 903-757-5893, ext. 303.

Totus Tuus is coming to St. Mary’s June 19-24. Totus Tuus is a catechetical summer youth program in which seminarians and college students proclaim the Gospel through catechetical instruction, Mass, confessions, games, and fun. Sessions for entering grades 1-6 will be June 20-24, 9 a.m.-3 p.m., for $20 per child (or a family rate of $50 for three or more children). Sessions for students entering grades 7-12 will be June 19-23, 7:30-9:45 p.m., with no cost for registration. For more information or to register, contact the church office, 903-757-5855, ext. 301, or email lkottwitz@stmaryslgv.org.

Teens can access Formed online at www.formed.org, with the parish login PR2VYP. Access great resources to learn more about the faith, and share with your friends.

The Men’s ACTS retreat in the Hodge Prison Unit in Rusk will be May 20. Offenders love home-baked cookies. If you can help, contact Jerry Stock, 903-238-9636.

St. Matthew Church. Msgr. Xavier Pappu will be leading a pilgrimage to the Holy Land Nov. 7-17. Cost is $3,000 per person. An informational meeting will be held May 3 at 7 p.m. in the parish hall. For information call 1-844-400-9559, or email info@nativitypilgrimage.com. The website is www.nativitypilgrimage.com.

Registration is open for Vacation Bible School, June 13-17. Cost is $10 per child. Call the church office for information or to register.

Volunteers for VBS are needed. Please contact the church office for information.


The Dominican Laity of Lufkin invites parishioners from both parishes to join them in praying the Liturgy of the Hours (Vespers) each Wednesday and Sunday evening at 5:30 p.m. in Saint Andrew’s Chapel. In so doing we honor God’s command to “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:1).

St. Andrew Church. The baccalaureate Mass for seniors graduating from high school and college will be May 15 during the 5:30 p.m. Mass. All graduates and their families are invited to attend the Mass and dinner afterward, provided by the Ladies Guild. Please RSVP to the church office or Katie Glanton, 704-962-0097.

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.

Our World Youth Day pilgrims are coming to an end with their fund raising for their pilgrimage to Krakow, Poland, this summer, but you can still help them reach their goal of $35,000. See the poster in the front of the church for information about their trip. Sponsor “miles” for $5 each. They have about 3,484 miles left to raise, or about $17,000. Please be generous, and help these young people on their journey to celebrate, learn about and express their faith with Pope Francis and young people from across the globe.

St. Patrick Church. The Angelina County Community Shoe Drive is going on through July 29. Please donate new boys’ or girls’ canvas or athletic shoes in sizes youth 1-adult 12+. There is a big demand for larger shoe sizes. Please help provide hope and shoes for the children in our midst.

The Support-A-Student collection will be taken up during Masses May 14-15. Proceeds are used to help students attend St. Patrick Catholic School through scholarships. We have many students on scholarship, so please be generous. $600 a month educates one child.


St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church. During the month of May, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton is designated to replenish food stocks for the Son-Shine Center, the community food pantry. Bring a can or two to add to the grocery cart. Encourage children to donate their favorite foods. If everyone brings a little, we can feed many hungry families in our midst.

We will commission our extraordinary ministers of Communion during Mass May 29. If you wish to share in this special ministry, please attend the meeting May 22 after Mass.

Altar server training sessions have been scheduled for June. Anyone having celebrated confirmation and first Eucharist is eligible to serve. Training sessions will begin June 5 with sessions after both Sunday Masses.


Mary Queen of Heaven Church. Faith formation classes for adults and children are held on Wednesdays. The first Wednesday of each month is Sacramental Preparation class. It is important that all parents with their children attend.

MQH Youth Group has joined with St. Edward’s in Athens. This combined youth group will meet on Tuesdays at St. Edward Church, 6-8 p.m. For further information contact our youth leaders, Chad & Jessica Bentley, mqhstedsyouth@gmail.com. You can also text 81010 and put @youth2121 to receive announcements and updates from our youth group.


St. Joseph Church. High school seniors, please give your name and address to the church office so you can be included in the special Mass and reception to be held in May.

The St. Joseph School website will be coming down May 31. If you would like any pictures from the website, please contact the church office.

We are seeking adorers to spend an hour with Christ as we have adoration every First Friday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., and every Saturday, 1-5 p.m. The signup book is on the baptismal font. Please prayerfully consider giving an hour to the Lord.

All high school youth are invited to Rediscover Jesus, Wednesdays at 7 p.m. in the parish hall.

Hot meals are served each Tuesday, 4:30-5:30 p.m., in the parish hall. The food bank needs caned fruit and pork and beans. In this Year of Mercy, help us feed the hungry in our midst.

Mount Pleasant

St. Michael Church. St. Michael’s annual Spring Carnival will be May 26-29 at the Fair Grounds in Mount Pleasant. Join the fun Memorial Day Weekend, Thursday, 5-9 p.m., Friday, 5-11 p.m., Saturday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m., and Sunday, noon-10 p.m., for food booths, rides, games, music, and more.


Our Lady of Victory Church. Classes for children preparing for the Sacrament of Confirmation are May 18, May 25 and June 1, all at 7 p.m. in the Activity Center. Classes are mandatory, and parents must accompany their children.

The Knights of Columbus will host a parish breakfast Sunday, May 15 in the Activity Center.

New confession times are Wednesdays, 11 a.m.-noon, and Saturdays, 3-5 p.m. Confessions also will be available Sundays during Mass when both priests are present.


Sacred Heart Church. A breakfast for graduates will be May 15 after the 8:30 a.m. Mass. Please RSVP to the Catholic Daughters of the Americas.

The parish picnic is June 5. Please watch the bulletin for details and information.

The St. Vincent de Paul Society is asking for “bags of blessings” to help the hungry in our midst. Please take a brown paper bag after Mass. Attached to each bag is a list of needed non-perishable food items. Please fill the bag with a few items and bring it back to Mass. This project will continue through Nov. 20 as part of the Year of Mercy declared by Pope Francis. Let us help our hungry brothers and sisters throughout the year, not just during holidays. Also, please contact the St. Vincent de Paul Society if there is someone who is hungry and could benefit from this program.


Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. Parents who wish to have their children baptized and raise them in the Catholic faith are invited to the baptism classes on July 11 and 18, September 12 and 19, and November 14 and 21, 6:30-8:30 p.m. in the Cathedral Center. Expectant parents also are invited. For information, call 903-592-1617, ext. 30, or email edietel@thecathedral.info.

Registration for Vacation Bible School is open until May 13. Forms are available online, thecathedral.info, and in the cathedral foyer. VBS will be June 6-10 in the Cathedral Center, and will have the theme Cave Quest: Following Jesus, the Light of the World.

There are 4 spots still open for the high school group’s trip to Dallas for Steubenville Lonestar. This conference, to be held June 17-19, features Catholic speakers and musicians from around the country, adoration, Mass, and thousands of like-minded Catholic teenagers. The total cost is $240, with the first $50 due with the registration form as a non-refundable deposit. For more information or for a registration form, please email Chris Johnson at cjohnson@thecathedral.info or call him at 903-592-1617, ext. 120.

Join the Catholic Daughters of the Americas for an evening of fun, food, fellowship, and games May 17 at 6 p.m. in the Cathedral Center.

The Legion of Mary will celebrate the apparition of our Lady of Fatima on May 13 at the Chapel of Saints Peter and Paul. After the 12:05 Mass, there will be an outside procession followed by the recitation of the Holy Rosary. Come and honor our Virgin Mother of God publicly according to her request to Bernadette Soubirous.

All seniors are invited to join us for noon Mass on May 18th at the Chapel of Saints Peter and Paul. Afterwards we will have lunch at F. D.’s Grillhouse on South Broadway. For further information call 903-581-1169.

The Hispanic community invites all to join us in a Pentecost Vigil that will be celebrated in Spanish on Saturday, May 14, 7 p.m.-midnight in the Cathedral Center. We will have prayer, hymns, reflections on the gifts of the Holy Spirit, and will end with exposition of the Blessed Sacrament. For any questions, please contact Mariela Gonzalez at 903 592 1617, ext. 133.

Presently the Saint Vincent de Paul Center is in need of all men’s clothing such as pants and shorts in sizes 28-36, shirts and t-shirts in sizes Large-4X, plus underwear, socks, and shoes. Also, Saint Vincent de Paul is now doing Home Visits. Volunteers are needed to help answer calls and inform callers of the types of assistance that SVdeP provides. This ministry will also consist of an occasional home visit to give food and prayer. Volunteers must have Ethics and Integrity training. To get more information or volunteer, please call Toni at 903-316-8642.

The Holy Eucharist is exposed for adoration at the Chapel of Sts. Peter & Paul Sundays, 7 p.m.-midnight, Monday-Friday, 4 a.m.-midnight, and Saturdays, 6 a.m.-noon. Make an Easter Promise to commit to one weekly Holy Hour, and you will find that Our Risen Christ bestows an abundance of love and mercy upon you and your loved ones. For more information, please contact coordinator, Kaylene Mongeau 903-894-7411, or email kaylenekarin@gmail.com.

A Rosary Holy Hour is held weekly on Tuesdays at 11 a.m. in the Adoration Chapel in the Chapel of Sts. Peter and Paul. The hour is open to all. For more information, contact Susan Mills 903-780-2935, or email mills_susan@sbcglobal.net.


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