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
Last week someone in our parish e-mailed me with a question of whether we should be taking
up a collection for the storm victims in Delmont, SD. It seemed like a Christian response to the
sufferings of our neighbors. Probably many people have already responded to appeals that
have been made, but if there are others who would like to contribute, our parish would be
glad to forward your donations to responsible agents in Delmont.
Often times when natural disasters strike, we are inclined to help our neighbors, and we sort
of take this response for granted. I remember being with an international group several years
ago and was really quite surprised that they held the USA in high regard for our continual
generosity around the world. I hadn't known our generosity was anything special. I just
thought that responding to human need was what we do.
For many months now, we have been hearing about the 125th anniversary of the Diocese of
Sioux Falls. Today as we remember the birthday of the Church at Pentecost, our local Bishop
has asked us to emphasize our own local Church.
Going back almost to the time of the Apostles, local Churches were established under the
headship of local leadership. These local Churches fulfilled the command of Jesus to preach
the Gospel to all the nations and to celebrate the sacraments of salvation.
By the 1870's there began to be Catholics in Dakota Territory, served by a variety of diocesan
priests and Benedictine monks. In the year 1889, South Dakota and North Dakota entered the
union as states, and Sioux Falls and Jamestown were named See cities by Pope Leo XIII.
Martin Marty, OSB, was named the first Bishop of Sioux Falls.
For the past 125 years, the Church of Sioux Falls has continued the mandate of Jesus to preach
the gospel in good times and in difficult. Countless people have been formed in the life of the
Gospel and have been guided on their way in this world with the hope of eternal life. The
Church of Sioux Falls has always responded to the needs of the time, whether economic
hardship or the winds of secularization, whether the renewal of the Church following Vatican
Council II or following the demographics of a mobile population.
In every era, the Church has preached the Gospel in the hope that it would penetrate
everyday life and advance the life of God's Kingdom. The Church has never been a mere
curator of artifacts but an active guardian of a living Tradition.
This past year the Church has been celebrating its legacy on the prairie with a number of
regional events. The celebration will climax in a 3-day event Friday-Sunday, August 14th-16th
right here in Sioux Falls at the Convention Center. There are a variety of events planned that
will celebrate our heritage and nourish our faith: presentations, conferences, entertainment,
and the sacred liturgy.
As a parish that has been formed by members from nearly every parish of the diocese, we
might see this event as a great family reunion that will strengthen our ties across eastern
South Dakota. I encourage you to check it out at www.sfcatholic.org/legacy.
Financial Report: Last weekend our crowds were on the light side as many members were
traveling for graduation events. Fortunately our collection did not follow. We were please to
find $12,472 in the envelopes and $1,283.54 in the loose offering with another $7,721.25 given
online. Thanks so much for your generosity!
A Stewardship Testimonial: "I so grateful to be a part of the church. This is like my home."
The Parish Office closes at 3 p.m. on Fridays from May 15th-August 14th.
HEALING MASS: Tuesday, May 26th at 6:30 p.m. in the Nave; The Sacrament of the
Anointing of the Sick will be offered and the healing power of Jesus in the Eucharist will be
emphasized during this Mass. Teams will be available following Mass to pray with you for
physical, emotional, mental or spiritual healing. Fr. Shaun Haggerty will be joining Fr.
Tschakert for confessions and Mass.