to the St. Katharine Drexel Parish (Sioux Falls, SD) Website
The mission of St. Katharine Drexel Parish is to gather together as a
community of faith, sharing the Word of God with all of our neighbors
through our words and example. We emphasize the sanctity of the
Eucharist in our daily lives and encourage good stewardship and
lifelong Catholic Christian education. Our consistent message is
"Come home to Christ".
Are you new to our parish? We would love to have you become an active part of our
faith community. Please stop after Mass and introduce yourself to Fr. Tschakert. He will give
you a card of introduction to fill out. Or, you can request more information, ask a question,
or have someone contact you by filling out the simple form here. Welcome!
Click on the image above
to read a biography.
Born: November 26, 1858
Died: March 3, 1955
(Parish Feast Day)
Canonized a Saint:
October 1, 2000
“If I can say of an action: ‘I
did it out of love of God,’
there is something about
it that will last through all
St. Katharine Drexel
Image courtesy of the
Archives of the Sisters of
the Blessed Sacrament.
“Peacefully do at each
moment what at that
moment ought to be
St. Katharine Drexel
Image courtesy of the
Archives of the Sisters of
the Blessed Sacrament.
O GOD OUR CREATOR,
From Your provident hand we have received our right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
You have called us as Your people and given us the right and the duty to worship You,
the only true God, and Your Son, Jesus Christ.
Through the power and working of Your Holy Spirit, You call us to live out our faith in the midst of the world,
bringing the light and the saving truth of the Gospel to every corner of society.
We ask You to bless us in our vigilance for the gift of religious liberty.
Give us the strength of mind and heart to readily defend our freedoms when they are threatened;
give us courage in making our voices heard on behalf of the rights of Your Church
and the freedom of conscience of all people of faith.
Grant, we pray, O heavenly Father, a clear and united voice to all Your sons and daughters gathered in Your Church
in this decisive hour in the history of our nation, so that, with every trial withstood and every danger overcome—for the
sake of our children, our grandchildren, and all who come after us—
This great land will always be “one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”
We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
WHY CONSCIENCE IS IMPORTANT
During the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s, Americans shone the light of the Gospel on a dark
history of slavery, segregation, and racial bigotry. The civil rights movement was an essentially religious
movement, a call to awaken consciences.
In his famous “Letter from Birmingham Jail” in 1963, Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. boldly said, “The goal of
America is freedom.” As a Christian pastor, he argued that to call America to the full measure of that
freedom was the specific contribution Christians are obliged to make. He rooted his legal and constitutional
arguments about justice in the long Christian tradition: “I would agree with Saint Augustine that ‘An unjust
law is no law at all.’… A just law is a man-made code that squares with the moral law or the law of God. An
unjust law is a code that is out of harmony with the moral law.”
Some unjust laws impose such injustices on individuals and organizations that disobeying the laws may be
justified. Every effort must be made to repeal them. When fundamental human goods, such as the right of
conscience, are at stake, we may need to witness to the truth by resisting the law and incurring its penalties.
The church does not ask for special treatment, simply the rights of religious freedom for all citizens. Rev.
King also explained that the church is neither the master nor the servant of the state, but its conscience,
guide, and critic.
Catholics and many other Americans have strongly criticized the recent Department of Health and Human
Services (HHS) mandate requiring almost all private health plans to cover contraception, sterilization and
abortion-inducing drugs. For the first time in our history, the federal government will force religious
institutions to fund and facilitate coverage of a drug or procedure contrary to their moral teaching, and
purport to define which religious institutions are “religious enough” to merit an exemption. This is a matter
of whether religious people and institutions may be forced by the government to provide such coverage
even when it violates our consciences.
What we ask is nothing more than the right to follow our consciences as we live out our teaching. This right
is not only about our ability to go to Mass on Sunday or pray the Rosary at home. It is about whether we can
make our contribution to the common good of all Americans. Can we do the good works our faith calls us to
do, without having to compromise that very same faith? Without religious liberty properly understood, all
Americans suffer, deprived of the essential contribution in education, health care, feeding the hungry, civil
rights, and social services that religious Americans make every day.
What is at stake is whether America will continue to have a free, creative, and robust civil society—or
whether the state alone will determine who gets to contribute to the common good, and how they get to
What can you do to ensure the protection of conscience rights?
The U.S. Bishops have called us to get informed, pray and advocate. To send your message to HHS and
Congress telling them to uphold religious liberty and conscience rights, go to www.usccb.org/conscience
today! Thank you for joining the effort to end this unprecedented government coercion.
FROM FR. TSCHAKERT
Thanks so very much to all those who assisted with our recent “Sharing Our Gifts” process. I
am grateful to those who have shared their faith story in regard to giving and all those who
have prayerfully considered their level of giving to St. Katharine Drexel Parish. If you haven’t
yet submitted, your pledge card to our Parish Office, I would certainly appreciate your doing
Over the years, I believe Catholics have been coming to a much healthier sense of stewardship
in a way that is more faithful to the Gospel. When I was a child, everyone was expected to pay
“pew rent” based on whether they were single or a family. Everyone was more or less
assessed the same amount. In reality, I’m sure some paid more while others paid less, but
there was rarely much emphasis on returning some portion of one’s wealth to the Lord and
Today we have a better spirituality of giving. When we are grateful, we simply recognize the
source of our blessings, and we want to make a return. Making a gift to God’s Church helps us
make a deeper commitment, and that in turn strengthens our faith.
Over the years I have been awed by the generosity of people with few resources and those
with great resources. I also know that I have been personally blessed when I’ve made a
deeper commitment to be generous with my resources.
This week on Saturday, the Church will celebrate the Solemnity of All Saints. Since November
1st falls on a Saturday, there is no obligation to attend Mass this year. We will have our regular
1st Saturday Mass at 9 a.m., and you are surely encouraged to celebrate the Communion of
the Saints. Since All Souls’ Day falls on a Sunday this year, the prayers and readings for that
day will supersede the readings for the 31st Sunday in Ordinary Time. All Souls’ Day is a
particularly Catholic event since it focuses on praying for the dead in purgatory.
The Catholic teaching on purgatory is quite sparse. The Church simply affirms as a matter of
faith that purgatory exists as a state of purification for people on their way to heaven. Souls in
purgatory are assisted by our prayers as they continue to grow toward the fullness of love.
Beyond those few details, anything we read about purgatory is probably someone’s opinion. I
have noticed over the years that as people grow closer to the time of their departure from this
world, purgatory becomes a more and more precious possibility.
I remember last time when All Souls’ Day fell on a Sunday, I preached about the possibility of
forgiveness and healing even after the time of death. That day there was a visitor at Mass who
told me afterward that he was very grateful for my words; shortly before that, he had lost a
friend in a death of tragic circumstances. The very thought of purgatory gave that young man
hope for his friend’s salvation. Hope is always a part of the essence of purgatory.
As Catholics, it is part of our tradition to pray for the dead, a practice that is well documented
even in the Old Testament and a part of our heritage from the very beginning. It is a consoling
thought that we are so bound together in the Body of Christ, that not even death can
separate us. Our prayers assist those in purgatory and hold us close together even when we
Financial Report: It was just great seeing so many people at Mass last weekend. And it was
gratifying to see our weekend collection rebound also. We found $5,320 in the envelope
offering, $2305.82 in the loose offering and received another $6710.50 through online giving.
Thanks so very much for all your generosity toward our parish. And thanks also to those who
remembered the missions of the Church.
A Stewardship Testimonial: “Thinking about yourself too much leads to a shallow life. There is
too much focus on the self these days. Love and caring are sources for energy. We have
energy when we care for others.”
TURKEY BINGO is coming up Sunday, Nov. 9th beginning at 4 p.m. in the MPR. There are
many ways you can help:
1) Donate a turkey or ham for a Bingo prize.
2) Donate an item for our Silent Auction (forms are available in the Parish Office).
3) Buy/sell raffle tickets. Prizes include a pool/pizza party at the Ramkota, $500 cash, and a
3 night/4-day stay at a beautiful home in the Black Hills. Tickets are $5/each or $10/3.
4) Volunteer to help with the Silent Auction, Bingo card sales, the kids' area, etc. Please
call the Parish Office if you'd like to help with the event.