Killings and kidnapping of priests, the religious and other pastoral workers especially in West Africa, seem to be on the increase.

English Africa Service, Vatican News - 21 March 2019

Although it is worth bearing in mind that by far the majority of victims in killings and kidnappings are ordinary innocent persons, crimes targeting religious pastoral workers are on the rise in Africa.

Capuchin Priest Fr. Toussaint Zoumaldé

Agenzia Fides reports that Capuchin priest, Fr. Toussaint Zoumaldé, a native of the Central African Republic was killed in Ngaoundéré, Cameroon on his way to Baibokoum in Chad.

According to a statement released by the General Custody of the Capuchins for Chad and the Central African Republic, Fr. Toussaint Zoumaldé had gone to the Diocese of Bouar, in the western part of Central African Republic to conduct some training. In the night between 19 and 20 March, unknown people attacked and killed him in Ngaoundéré (Cameroon) where he had made an overnight stop.

Fr. Toussaint (born in 1971) had worked as the Director of Radio Siriri, in the Diocese of Bouar. Please pray for the repose of the soul of Fr. Zoumaldé and for the persecuted Church in these areas of the world!


San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone, in whose Archdiocese the death chamber is located, has issued the following statement on behalf of the California Catholic Conference of Bishops regarding the declaration of a moratorium on executions by California Governor Gavin Newsom:

"The Roman Catholic Bishops of California welcome the announcement by Governor Newsom today that he is declaring a moratorium on the use of the death penalty in the state of California. We appreciate this recognition that the state has the adequate means to defend human dignity and public safety without recourse to capital punishment. We ask the Governor to urge the legislature to find a permanent legislative solution that will end the practice of capital punishment in our state for good.

"We also encourage the Governor to use well the time of the moratorium to promote civil dialogue on alternatives to the death penalty, including giving more needed attention and care to the victims of violence and their families. Capital punishment is not a cure for the suffering and turmoil inflicted by violent crime; the restorative healing of victims and their families to the extent possible is an essential part of justice.

"With regard to the practice of capital punishment itself, it has been apparent for many years that such recourse to the ultimate punishment is not necessary in a modern society. Repeated studies have proven that it does not serve as a deterrent, that too many innocent people are condemned, and that sentencing is too often influenced by racial, economic and other discriminatory factors.

"The Catholic Church has long recognized these realities, beginning with Saint Pope John Paul II and continuing with Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI and Pope Francis. They have been joined by numerous national conferences of bishops, including our own U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, and other Catholic leaders throughout the world. Pope Francis in particular has modified the Catechism of the Catholic Church to assert that the death penalty is "inadmissible" in order to underscore that it undermines the respect for life demanded by the intrinsic dignity of every human life.

"We thank Governor Newsom for this decision, and pray that this moratorium will bear fruit for a more just and equitable solution to addressing the violence that plagues our society."

Archdiocese of San Francisco, March 13, 2019

Eligible boys should possess an unchanged, clear and pleasant singing voice. Previous choir experience is not required and there is no need to prepare audition material. There is no cost to audition.


Fr. John wishes to offer an invitation to those interested in being a part of the service and outreach of the growing ministries of the Shrine. Fr. John will be hoping to develop strong teams of volunteers to serve as Extra-ordinary ministers of Communion, Altar Servers, Lectors, Greeters, Assistant Sacristans, Ushers, Hospitality Providers, Cantors, Musicians, etc. Especially at a church that is at a stage of expanding its small but vibrant faith community - there is a great reliance on the participation of many of the few. Be a trailblazer, as together we develop the witness of the Shrine to St. Francis. If interested: please submit contact information to Fr. John at e-mail:


PORZIUNCULA PARDON is always available under the conditions the Catholic Church has stipulated. The conditions for receiving the Porziuncula Pardon are:

To receive the the Porziuncula Indulgence on August 2, one must receive sacramental absolution and receive Holy Communion at Mass during the Period beginning eight days before the Feast of Our Lady of the Angels and ending eight days after August 2. Additionally, on August 2 itself, one must visit a church where one prays at least the Creed and an Our Father for the intentions of the Pope. Additionally, one must be completely free of any attachment to sin; if this condition is not met, the indulgence is partial rather then plenary. However, at the National Shrine of St. Francis of Assisi, the Pardon of Assisi may be received on August 2 (either at the Shrine Church or the Porziuncula Nuova chapel); on October 4th, the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi (in the Shrine Church); on any two days of one's own choosing during the year (one day in the Church and one day in the Porziuncula Nuova); and as often as one makes a formal pilgrimage as part of a group to the Shrine Church or to the Porziuncula Nuova. (One may receive a plenary indulgence only once a day and it may be applied to oneself or to the soul of one of the faithfully departed. All the same conditions as on August 2nd apply.)

Donations Needed for Historic Pipe Organ

You are invited to own a piece of history at the National Shrine of Saint Francis of Assisi by contributing to help us meet the current needs of our Historic Pipe Organ. The total cost before tax and any unforeseen additions is $3,630.

Church-Hall Revonation Photos