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
During the next week, there will be many opportunities to celebrate God's mercy in the
Sacrament of Forgiveness. Mercy is perhaps the topic that Pope Francis has touched on most
often over these past two years. Confession in the Sacrament of Penance is one of the premier
places where Catholics can access this mercy that is so freely given.
In the early Church, the Sacrament of Penance could be celebrated only once in a lifetime, and
then only for the most grievous sins. It was considered that minor sins were forgiven through
the celebration of the Eucharist. Later, Penance became repeatable and was celebrated even
for venial sins.
By the 13th century, it was decreed that all Catholics were required to confess their sins at
least once a year, if they were conscious of having committed any serious sins. By this time
also it was required that confessionals be equipped with screens to protect the identity of the
When I was a child, it was recommended that Catholics confess their sins about once a month,
and this has been a good pattern for me for the most part. In recent years, many Catholics
have limited their celebration of the Sacrament of Penance to Christmas and Easter or even
less often. I've known a few people who desired to confess their sins weekly or even more
often, but for the most part this has never been the intent of the Church for this Sacrament.
There are so many splendid aspects to Holy Week, and the grace of God is offered so
abundantly in the liturgy of the Church. If you haven't yet made your Lenten confession, I do
encourage you to take advantage of this conduit of God's life. Ridding ourselves of the
residue of sin makes us more open to the grace that is given in the celebration of the Sacred
In as many ways as I can imagine, I've been inviting you to the celebration of Holy Week.
Besides being beautifully moving liturgies, these celebrations invite us to enter into the
mystery of salvation in a way that is deeper than mere head knowledge. They invite us to
know Jesus in the depths of His love for us.
In each of our lives, there are certain experiences that cannot be explained by simple logic.
There often is no logic for suffering or loss. But as we walk with Jesus from the Upper Room
of the Last Supper, along the path to the Garden of Gethsemane and then to Golgotha, we
know that Jesus walks with us in our own suffering and redeems our losses.
As we stand at the cross with the Blessed Virgin Mary and John, the beloved Apostle, we are
moved to compassion for the many people who bear heavy crosses in our world. And
compassion moves us toward redemption from our self-centered world view.
Besides being beautiful and moving liturgies, these celebrations are very practical in the way
they lay the mystery of Christ's passion, death and resurrection beside our own life
experience. These liturgies help us make sense of our own lives.
None of us knows what we will face in the next months, but we can be sure that there will be
times when we will walk in confusion. The grace that is offered by Holy Week will help us walk
in faith through the darkness as we wait for the light of resurrection.
Please do make the celebration of Holy Week a high priority for you and for your children.
Also, please return your Rice Bowls this week as we share our Lenten penance with those who
Financial Report: Last weekend we counted more than 1,200 people are our 3 Masses. We also
counted $5,347 in our envelope offerings and another $1,815.05 in our loose collection. Our
weekly online average for the month is $7,729. CFSA has also continued to arrive. We are
grateful for all your generosity!
A Stewardship Testimonial: "I can barely imagine was Jesus has done for me through His
passion and death."
Lenten Communal Reconciliation Service Sunday, March 29th at 7 p.m. For additional
individual confession times, please see our "Mass Schedule" page.
Please see our "Mass Schedule" page for Holy Week liturgy times.