Name of Church St. Mary’s Basilica
Address 231 North Third Street, Phoenix, AZ 85004
Phone number 602-354-2100
Mass times Saturday vigil, 5 p.m.; Sunday, 9 & 11 a.m. Monday – Friday, 12:05 p.m.
Confessions Fridays, 11 a.m. & 1 p.m.; Saturdays, 4 p.m.
Names of priests Franciscan Fathers Michael Weldon, pastor & rector, and Micah Muhlen and Edward Sarrazin, parochial vicars. Fr. Luis Baldonado, in residence. The church has been staffed by Franciscan friars since 1895; Fr. Muhlen delivered a good homily on the Word of God when this writer was present. Years ago, Phoenix suffered from scandals that reached the office of the previous bishop, but today, the capable, orthodox bishop is Thomas Olmsted has been at the helm since 2003
Special groups and activities Holy Hour and adoration, Thursdays, 1 – 2 p.m.; Sacred Heart Devotions, after noon Mass on 1st Fridays; Bible Study; St. Mary’s Youth Group; Ministry to the Sick and Homebound; Legion of Mary; St. Vincent de Paul Society.
Music The parish has a pipe organ; on weekends you’ll enjoy more traditional music.
Fellow parishioners The parish serves families that drive in from all over the Phoenix area, as well as businessmen who come to Mass during the week. It also draws a significant number of visitors. All Masses are in English.
Parking There is a small parking lot beside the church, or underground parking under the chancery office.
Cry room No, but children are welcome. Take them out into the courtyard if they become unruly.
Parish bulletin Available online.
Additional observations St. Mary’s Basilica is a beautiful old church in downtown Phoenix. It is surrounded by hotels, offices and the convention center, and is only about 50 yards away from the chancery office for the diocese. The parish was established in 1881; the current church completed in 1914. It is a beautiful old church, built in the traditional style. One of its most notable features is its many colorful stained glass windows; in the rear, as you exit, is a particularly beautiful one featuring the Blessed Mother. It also has a traditional altar, two side altars, an altar rail, tall white columns and many statues of the saints (watch video below).
Alongside the church is a large courtyard featuring statues of St. Francis, Mother Teresa and Pope John Paul II. The entrance to the chancery is on the opposite side of the courtyard, but it is not the rectory of the church and is not where you should go for information. Take a look inside the chancery, if you can, as it has a nice chapel and exhibits featuring Pope John Paul II’s visit to Phoenix in 1987. (He celebrated Mass for 75,000 in Tempe’s Sun Devil Stadium; you can see the chair the pontiff sat in, and some of the items he wore, such as his mitre.)