“Returning to the New Testament roots of the diaconate”

Oakland Bishop Michael Barber tells new transitional deacons: "I’m asking you to join me in serving the poor tomorrow morning, a few blocks away from here in People’s Park”

At St. Joseph the Worker Church in Berkeley, Bishop Michael C. Barber, SJ, ordained four men to the transitional deaconate on Aug. 4. Bishop Barber wasted little time in putting Peter Lawongkerd, John Pietruszka, Javier Ramirez and Mark Ruiz to work. “Before mounting the pulpit tomorrow, to proclaim the Gospel or preach the Word of God or offer your first sermon. Before … [Read more...]

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Tulare priest gets probation for stealing $300,000 from parish

Fresno Bishop Armando Ochoa says diocese using "restorative justice" approach for Fr. Ignacio Villafan, who remains on administrative leave

Catholic priest Ignacio Villafan, 52, was sentenced Wednesday to five years probation for stealing over $300,000 from the Tulare church where he served as the pastor in charge, the Tulare County District Attorney’s Office said. The sentence by Judge Gary Paden is too lenient because Villafan is not going to jail, District Attorney Tim Ward said. “To think that a person could … [Read more...]

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Suspect arrested in vandalism, arson at St. Charles Borromeo Church

investigators pulled security camera footage from buildings surrounding the church

Los Angeles police said this week they arrested a man they believe set three fires inside St. Charles Borromeo Church in North Hollywood and a fourth just outside the church’s doors last week that caused extensive damage to the iconic building. In a written statement, officials said 58-year-old Russel Congleton was arrested on Monday by a task force of LAPD investigators. The … [Read more...]

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Landmark North Hollywood church vandalized

Cardinal Roger Mahony lives on grounds of St. Charles Borromeo Church, which suffered “a large amount of property damage”

Parishioners of a prominent Catholic church in North Hollywood were searching for answers Wednesday, July 25, after their beloved sanctuary was severely vandalized before dawn. Authorities were asking for the public’s help in solving the crime after the Los Angeles Police Department’s North Hollywood Division found evidence of fire outside St. Charles Borromeo Church and “a … [Read more...]

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Christ Cathedral Memorial Gardens will be overhauled, expanded

Cemetery on cathedral grounds will increase capacity by about 450 percent, add a Sanctuary of Eternal Life, mausoleum, sarcophagi, or stone coffins, and thousands of glass and marble niches

Since it opened in 1991, the Memorial Gardens cemetery at the former Crystal Cathedral, now Christ Cathedral, has been a restful enclave where relatives of the dead could pray, reflect or grieve. Set below grade, in the shadow of the iconic glass cathedral and prayer tower, the 3-acre plot of green with a mausoleum and niches, flanked by fountains, has been a popular feature on … [Read more...]

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Christ Cathedral will look the same — except inside

“The historic shell of the original Crystal Cathedral will be maintained and restored”

Outside, in defiance of its serene backdrop, a jackhammer thunders away. Sparks flare from a power saw as it ear-piercingly grinds through steel. Inside, sounds of construction echo through a cavernous space that is at once familiar and disorienting – with flooring uprooted, seats gone and tall scaffolding everywhere. The famous glass structure in Garden Grove, built four … [Read more...]

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Property sales reduce outstanding Christ Cathedral acquisition debt

Sale of former pastoral center, St. Callistus parish properties leave long-term debt on the property of about $20 million

In 2012, the Diocese of Orange purchased the internationally acclaimed Crystal Cathedral, which was in bankruptcy, for $57.5 million. The purchase represented a providential opportunity for the Diocese to establish a center for its diverse and expansive Catholic community of 1.5 million and to build a center of Catholic evangelization that will enliven the faith for generations … [Read more...]

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“We have risen from the ashes”

New Hacienda Heights church replaces one destroyed in 2011 arson fire; site for 90th parish in Fresno diocese blessed June 22 in Clovis

Hacienda Heights, California - More than seven years after St. John Vianney Catholic Church burned down at the hands of an arsonist, it has arisen like Lazarus. The new parish, 1345 Turnbull Canyon Road, Hacienda Heights, was dedicated at 11 a.m. Saturday, Jun 23. Archbishop José H. Gomez presided over the service to dedicate the new parish with Monsignor Timothy Nichols, … [Read more...]

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“An environment that if not hostile to organized religion, is not exactly friendly to it”

Priest reflects on challenge of 'being church' in wealthy Marin County

In the 50 years since it was built, Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church, perched on the redwood slopes of Mount Tamalpais has become an iconic feature of Mill Valley’s small-town landscape. Catholic San Francisco visited the parish on May 31 to talk about the anniversary of the church built in 1968 for a Catholic community that goes back 108 years. Part of the conversation … [Read more...]

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16 ordained to permanent diaconate in Los Angeles

Archbishop Jose Gomez ordains 15 married men and one single man at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels on June 9

Archbishop José H. Gomez ordained 16 new permanent deacons for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels in downtown Los Angeles on Saturday, June 9. Restored in 1968 as a fully functioning ministry within the Church, the deacon is ordained to serve God’s people in communion with the bishop and his priests. The 15 married men and one single … [Read more...]

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