St. Katharine Drexel Parish March 2017 e-Newsletter
In This Issue

Upcoming Events

Friday, March 10th
Stations of the Cross and Fish Dinner  5:30 p.m. and 6 p.m.
"Gratitude: Seeing as Gift" DVD series led by Fr. Tschakert 6:45 p.m. (Room 203)
Thursday & Friday, March 16th and 17th
No school: SFCS
Friday, March 17th
Stations of the Cross and Fish Dinner  5:30 p.m. and 6 p.m.
"Gratitude" DVD series 6:45 p.m. (Room 203)
Saturday, March 18th
Parish Men's Group (Gathering Space)
7:30-9 a.m.
Sunday, March 19th
Youth Pancake Breakfast
8:30 a.m.-12 p.m. (MPR)
Monday, March 20th
Parish Council Meeting
6:30-7:30 p.m. (Room 203)
Friday, March 24th
Stations of the Cross and Fish Dinner  5:30 p.m. and 6 p.m.
"Gratitude" DVD series 6:45 p.m. (Room 203)

Sunday, March 26th
Youth Group for all jr. high and high school students 6:30-8 p.m. (Youth Room)
Monday, March 27th
No school: SFPS
Tuesday, March 28th
Anointing Mass (Nave)
6:30 p.m.

Wednesday, March 29th
Youth Large Group meeting 6:45-8 p.m. (MPR)

Thursday, March 30th
Diocesan Chrism Mass
11 a.m. (St. Joseph Cathedral)

Friday, March 31st
Stations of the Cross and Fish Dinner  5:30 p.m. and 6 p.m.
"Gratitude" DVD series 6:45 p.m. (Room 203)
Monday, April 3rd
Serve breakfast at
The Banquet
5:30/6:30-8 a.m.

Thursday, April 6th
Baptismal Planning Class 6:30 p.m. (Gathering Space)

Friday, April 7th
First Friday Eucharistic Adoration  6 a.m.-7 p.m. in our Chapel
Stations of the Cross and Fish Dinner  5:30 p.m. and 6 p.m.
"Gratitude" DVD series 6:45 p.m. (Room 203)
Saturday, April 8th
First Holy Communion Retreat  9:30-11:30 a.m.
Sunday, April 9th
Palm Sunday of the Lord's Passion
Youth Pancake Breakfast
8:30 a.m.-12 p.m.
Lenten Communal Reconciliation Service 
7 p.m. (Nave)
Thursday, April 13th
Holy Thursday Mass of the Lord's Supper 7 p.m.
Early dismissal: SFCS
Early dismissal: SFPS Elementary schools;
Late start: SFPS Middle schools
Friday, April 14th
Good Friday Liturgy of the Passion of Our Lord
7 p.m.
No school: SFCS and SFPS
Saturday, April 15th
Holy Saturday Easter Vigil Mass 8 p.m.
Please note: There will be NO 5 p.m. Mass on Saturday, April 15th
Sunday, April 16th
Solemnity of the Resurrection of the Lord
Easter Sunday Masses
8:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.
Monday, April 17th
Parish Office Closed
Parish Council Meeting
6:30-7:30 p.m. (Room 203)

Friday, April 21st
Serve supper at
St. Francis House
5-7:30 p.m.

Saturday, April 22nd
Parish Men's Group 7:30-9 a.m. (Gathering Space)

Tuesday, April 25th
Anointing Mass (Nave)
6:30 p.m.

Wednesday, April 26th 
Youth Large Group meeting 6:45-8 p.m. (MPR)

Sat./Sun., April 29th/30th First Holy Communion at all Masses

For more events, visit our parish calendar, where you can automatically add events to your personal calendar!

Sowing the Seeds of Faith

On the east wall of my office, there are two large images of Jesus that travel with me from parish to parish. One image shows Jesus standing in a boat, calming the wind and the waves. The other shows Jesus sowing seeds on ground. We are familiar with the stories from the Gospels.

I often think that sowing the seeds of faith is the most important work that I do. Throughout the past 35 years, I have spent a good deal of time preaching the Gospel and teaching both young people and adults. Over these years, I've come to know the truth of St. Paul who said that while one person sows the seeds, another waters, and yet another harvests the crop.
Recently, I spent quite a few hours visiting one-on-one with our Confirmation candidates regarding their progress in the life of faith. Some of them mentioned particular people who had been good witnesses of the faith for them. Others mentioned teachers or mentors who had had a good influence on them.
For a pastor, it is quite thrilling to see these young people take their faith formation seriously as they step forward for Confirmation. In our confusing world where faith is sometimes shunted to the sidelines, it is reassuring to know that some will carry the faith to the next generation.
In about two months, our parish will celebrate First Holy Communion for 58 second graders. These children receive some preparation in our Catholic School or in our Religious Education program. But we also depend on their parents to do a good part of the preparation at home. We always hope this will be a process that engages the family in a renewed appreciation for the Holy Eucharist.
Over the next months, we will have many, many weddings at our parish, and we pray that these couples will reflect the life of Jesus in their love for each other. The Holy Father recently mentioned that some engaged couples almost need to start over in their understanding of Jesus and the life of faith.
There was a time in history when most faith formation happened in the natural course of family life. Today we really have to be more intentional about sowing the seeds of faith. I often encourage young parents to read Bible stories to their children as an introduction to Jesus and the call of God.
It is also essential that Catholic children participate at Mass each weekend. Over a period of years, the Word of God slips into our hearts and forms us as disciples. The habit of celebrating Mass each weekend gives us roots to remain steady in the face of life decisions and the disorientation of contemporary life.
I hope that many of our families will participate in the many opportunities we have for faith enhancement at St. Katharine Drexel Parish. This is the time when teens are signing up for mission trips, retreats, and spiritual conferences. Our parish youth ministry is very active and welcoming. During the summer, we will have Totus Tuus for the children.  
I also hope that families will gather for Lenten prayers at home, participate in Operation Rice Bowl, and pray the Stations of the Cross at least once during Lent.
In the parable of the sower, Jesus told us that some seeds will be lost and some will die for lack of rain. But He also guarantees that some seeds will produce a great harvest. Our task is to keep sowing the seeds.
Father Gregory Tschakert
St. Katharine Drexel Parish

Get More Out of Lent     

Lenten resources and programs in our parish:
  • Devotionals for children and for families can help you focus your family prayer for these 40 days. You can pick up these devotionals in the Gathering Space.
  • Operation Rice Bowl is an excellent opportunity to share what we have with some of God's children whom we will never even meet. Rice bowls are also available in the Gathering Space.
  • Stations of the Cross in the Nave each Friday at 5:30 p.m. Our Knights of Columbus Council will host a fish dinner in the Multipurpose Room following Stations. This is an excellent opportunity to pray together and then share a time of common life in our parish.
  • Bible study on the Gospel of John each Monday evening of Lent at 6:30 p.m., led by Gae French. This is a video series featuring Edward Sri from Ascension Press.
  • Gratitude series, beginning Friday, March 10th at 6:45 p.m. Fr. Tschakert will lead this weekly program, which includes a 25-minute video and a brief time for discussion.   
And some ideas from across the Web:
Eucharistic Adoration   

For Catholics, the Eucharist is the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Our Lord, Jesus Christ. While our Lord is with and around us all day, every day, Eucharistic Adoration allows us a special opportunity to escape our busy, hectic lives and spend quiet time with Jesus.
Well before modern time, Eucharistic Adoration was a widespread practice in the Church. The Mass was in Latin, a language very few understood, and Communion was received on rare occasions, usually not more than once or twice a year. Eucharistic Adoration allowed the faithful to be close to Our Lord, meditate on His Real Presence, and honor and adore Him in a way not possible during Mass.
Meditating on the mystery of the Eucharist--thinking about our blessings, realizing that Our Savior loves us with a love that is perfect, all-consuming, never-ending--helps us hear Jesus as He whispers softly in our ear. Yes, clearing our mind of everyday clutter is difficult. However, on those occasions when we are successful, when we sit in the dimly lit chapel looking at the Eucharist and know that the Son of the Almighty God is here with us, not out there some place, but here with us, the feeling is indescribable.
Eucharistic Adoration is a unique opportunity to be with Our Savior. Life is given to us by God. Why wouldn't we slow down to thank Him for this life, for all that He has given, by spending time with His Son?
Please consider quiet time and prayer at St. Katharine Drexel Parish First Friday Eucharistic Adoration each month. Our parish First Friday Adoration is in our Chapel, from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Meet Jim Frank, Our New Youth Minister 
Hello! My name is Jim Frank. I am the new Youth Minister at St. Katharine Drexel Parish. My wife Mary and I have been married for 32 years. We have 3 grown children and 3 grandchildren. Mary is a native of Sioux Falls, while I was raised in Cedar Rapids, IA. We both attended St. Mary's University in Winona, MN, which is where we met. Mary completed her education at the University of Iowa, and has been employed in the field of Nuclear Medicine for over 30 years.
Prior to my position as Youth Minister, I was employed by the Sioux Falls Catholic and Sioux Falls Public School Districts, both as an educator and as a coach for middle school football, basketball, and track. These past 11 years, I was employed by Memorial Middle School, as an educator and coach.
Why did I take the position of St. Katharine Drexel Parish Youth Minister? I have worked with youth and young adults as an educator and coach for the better part of my life. My background as a child is rich and ingrained with the Catholic faith, including 16 very fortunate years of an incredible and a very blessed Catholic education. My wife and I have been active in Religious Education programs in 3 different states. Now I have been given this incredible gift by God to be able to share, watch, and be a part of our Catholic youth's spiritual maturation process. It doesn't get any better than that, right?
It is and will always be a goal of our parish and our Youth Program to get as many parishioners and youth as possible involved, and to encourage them to remain and to stay active in their faith each and every day. That is a part of my job, and I look forward to being God's messenger in carrying forth this torch.
God's grace and blessing to all,
Jim Frank
Youth Minister
The Welcoming Committee Needs You! 
The Welcoming Committee at St. Katharine Drexel Parish strives to ensure that our parish is welcoming and inclusive, a place where no one will feel like a stranger for very long. As our parish website states, "We always welcome visitors to our church, those who join us for liturgy and those who just want to drop by for a quiet prayer. If you have no church family with whom to pray, please join us."
We are in the process of planning a time in May when we will come together as a parish and reach out to those who may not have a church family and invite them to learn more about St. Katharine Drexel Parish. This welcome will be in the form of a door-to-door campaign. Guidance, materials, and a partner will be provided to those who volunteer to help us reach out to people.
If you are interested in volunteering for this opportunity to make a difference, please contact Diane Nekvinda at 310-7593, or contact Tonia in the Parish Office at 275-6870.
Did You Know?
Our parish has a subscription to Formed, and you can create a personal account, free of charge. From the Augustine Institute, Formed is "The Catholic Faith. On Demand." You'll have 24/7 access to programs, movies, audio, and books, for children, youth, and adults. Go to Scroll down to "Register - Sign Up Free Using Your Parish Code." Our parish code is 12fdd. Please use our parish code to sign up, as our parish access provides you with more content than an individual subscription. Start enjoying the truth, beauty, and meaning of the Catholic Faith anytime, anywhere!
You can find all kinds of information on the internet  about the local efforts for   40 Days for Life .  From Wednesday, March 1st to Sunday, April 9th, our community will take part in 40 Days for Life, a groundbreaking, coordinated international mobilization. We pray that, with God's help, this will mark the beginning of the end of abortion in our city and beyond. At the website, you can create a personal account, find local contact information, sign up for vigil hours, donate, sign up for email updates, and more.
Our parish Spiritual Adoption Program began again in January. This is the 4th year our parish has prayed through this program for unborn babies in danger of abortion. As of the beginning of February, more than 126 babies had been spiritually adopted by St. Katharine Drexel parishioners, and that doesn't include the participation of our school students and the babies adopted in their classrooms. It is not too late to adopt. Please stop by the Parish Office and pick up your baby sock magnet and prayer card.  
Our parish Vocations Committee prays every Thursday morning at 7:30.
Now optimized for your mobile device-- our parish website! You can even submit your prayer requests online. Visit and take a tour today.
We've been featured! The February issue of Saint Katharine's Circle, a quarterly newsletter published by the National Shrine of Saint Katharine Drexel in Bensalem, PA, includes a 2-page piece about our parish. Don't miss this!
St. Katharine Drexel Parish on the Web   
  Mass Schedule, Calendar, Online Giving, Readings, and much more. Our Parish Web page has been updated and redesigned. Check it out!

 Have you "liked" St. Katharine Drexel Parish yet? It's a great way to stay up-to-date on Parish events. Visit

Log on to our Flickr site to see photos of our beautiful Sanctuary and Nave as well as our stained glass windows. Want to help us? Contact Carol Deering (212-5218/ of the Communications Committee.

Our Parish YouTube page includes eight videos. Do you have an idea for a video on our channel? Talk with Fr. Tschakert (275-6870/ or Carol Deering of the 
Communications Committee ( 212-5218/