Sanctuary Renovation Coming Soon!

04-11-2021This Week in Vidi Dominum

Dear Parishioners:

I am excited to be able to share this wonderful news with all of you! This summer, we’re going to be doing some renovations to our sanctuary space. The design concept is pictured here (large image also in the church narthex) and below is a summary from the artists about the symbolism and meaning behind what you will see. This build is the fruit of the 2019 “Together Let Us Go Forth” diocesan campaign and our own capital campaign launched in 2017. These campaigns have had two goals: 1) to build a parish hall; and 2) the beautification of our church. This sanctuary build will cost us between $500,000 and $750,000, will take 90-120 days to complete, and will not incur any more debt upon St. Mary Magdalene. We are continuing to work towards the parish hall. We have not given up on the hall, but have to continue raising monies, as current construction costs exceed the funds we have on hand. I will continue to share development updates as they become available.

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Moments of the Mass: Agnus Dei

02-14-2021This Week in Vidi DominumClaire Halbur

In the powerful TV series The Chosen*, a breathless Andrew comes running to exclaim to his brother: “Simon, it’s happened! We are saved! I saw him with my own eyes...the Lamb of God.

He who takes away the sin of the world.” He tries to describe being at the Jordan river with John the Baptist and seeing John point out Jesus with this title. Simon, stressed out about his finances, sick mother-in-law, recent argument with his wife, and the lack of good catches lately (he’s a full-time fisherman), dismisses his brother’s testimony as irrelevant to his personal troubles.

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Moments of the Mass: Sanctus

02-05-2021This Week in Vidi DominumClaire Halbur

During the middle of Mass (after the Liturgy of the Word and the preparation of the altar) comes the Eucharistic prayer, which the General Instruction of the Roman Missal calls “the center and high point of the entire celebration...the prayer of thanksgiving and sanctification.” (GIRM 78)

This prayer begins with a dialogue in which the priest exhorts us to lift up our hearts. Then the celebrant chants or speaks the Preface, “in which the Priest, in the name of the whole of the holy people, glorifies God the Father and gives thanks to him for the whole work of salvation or for some particular aspect of it, according to the varying day, festivity, or time of year.”

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Missa Magdalena: A gift for the Lord and for you

01-29-2021This Week in Vidi DominumClaire Halbur

As Catholics, we possess a heritage of prayers that pass our lips thousands—even tens of thousands—of times in our lives. The Our Father, Hail Mary, and Glory Be probably come to mind. So should the basic prayers of our Liturgy…

  • Each Holy Mass starts by calling to mind our shortcomings and failures in order to humbly ask for forgiveness: “Lord, Have Mercy”.
  • On holy days and most Sundays of the Church year, this moment is then followed by the “Glory to God” with a focus on adoring and praising God for his greatness and proclaiming who He is.
  • A little while later is a prayer called the Preface Acclamation, beginning with the words “Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God of Hosts…”
  • After the Consecration, we proclaim the Mystery of Faith in one of three acclamations (for example, “We proclaim your death, O Lord”).
  • Just before Communion is the Fraction Rite, during which priest breaks the newly-consecrated host while the people pray, “Lamb of God…”
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Our Spiritual Staff Members

02-23-2020This Week in Vidi DominumFr. Chris Axline

Ever since I was a child, I have enjoyed learning about the saints. Now, as a priest, I love celebrating the many saints' feasts and memorials on the liturgical calendar. I find their stories both inspiring and challenging: inspiring because God worked through them despite their human weaknesses, and challenging because they remained faithful to the Lord and His Church both in good times and in bad.  

It prompts me to reflect on my own life and whether I could make the same choice if put in similar circumstances. One thing I notice is that these heroic men and women—Catholic superheroes we can rightly call them—were not born saints. Rather, they became saints through the choices they made every day. Like us, they too made mistakes but would admit their failings and entrust them to God's mercy, thus turning their mistakes into opportunities to be drawn closer to the heart of Christ and purified by His Love.

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Diocesan Campaign Update

02-09-2020This Week in Vidi DominumFr. Chris Axline

I want to thank you for your generous support to the Together Let Us Go Forth Campaign for the Diocese of Phoenix. This diocesan wide campaign will provide the necessary resources for both current and future generations of Catholics to have an encounter with Christ and to develop a relationship with Him. Our Parish and Diocese can only accomplish this important work through the sacrificial gifts you have made through your pledge.

It is with great gratitude that I thank you for your commitment to fulfilling your pledge, which is so vital to our growth and our success. I would like to take a moment to update you on the progress of the campaign. While we did not make our assessed goal of $1,519,803, we did receive $752,385 in promised pledges. This is fantastic and we should not be discouraged as a parish. We did not fail. In fact, I want to acknowledge that the timing of this campaign was not ideal; especially in light of our own needs and our campaign to build the parish hall. However,

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God is With Us

12-22-2019This Week in Vidi DominumFr. Chris Axline

I've always been a huge fan of Christmas; there's such a great joy buzzing around that makes this time so different than any other. This joy that seems to fill every heart is so great that it is hard to describe exactly where it comes from. Some would say it comes from giving or receiving exactly the "perfect gift." Others say it comes from the acts of kindness we perform for each other. Still others might think it's all just a lie that we use to fool ourselves and hide whatever pains and hurts we've had to endure this past year. Yet, none of these three options is really able to pinpoint the source of this great joy; that is, until Christmas.

What is it, or better yet, WHO is it that motivates our gift-giving, our works of charity, and the great hope with which we look to the future? It can only be Jesus Christ, God made flesh, who breaks forth into our world on this Holy day.

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On Adoration

11-24-2019This Week in Vidi DominumFr. Chris Axline

Having a perpetual adoration chapel where we can visit Our Lord at any time of the day or night is a great joy and privilege. It is also a great responsibility for the parish and the individual adorer. As your pastor, I am responsible for ensuring Perpetual Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. I must tell you with great sadness, that a recent audit of our adoration chapel indicates that we have many open hours where the Lord is alone with no assigned adorer.

In order to ensure proper vigil, and custody of the Blessed Sacrament, and to comply with the directives given by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), I must ensure that our parish has: a minimum of 2 adorers are assigned per hour, and that the Blessed Sacrament is never left unattended during exposition.

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The State of Our Capital Campaign

08-30-2019This Week in Vidi DominumFr. Chris Axline

1. What is the For the Glory of the Risen Lord Campaign?

When this campaign was launched in March of 2017 it was laid out as the first of three phases designed to help us meet the current and future needs of St. Mary Magdalene.

Phase one (the current phase) is focused on the construction of a social hall providing additional gathering space for various programs, PLC's, social events, and other needs as they arise. We are currently in phase one, focusing on the social hall. Once this is done, then we can begin phase two and turn our attention towards the beautification/renovation of the church building.

Phase two (to begin after phase one) turns our attention towards the current church or multi-purpose building and worship space. For this endeavor, after consulting with many groups and individuals within the parish, and based on finances, the decision was made to renovate the current space rather than build a new church. Doing this will save us millions of dollars and will still meet the needs of St. Mary Magdalene. The need for a larger church building is no longer present as the Diocese has already opened one parish near us and have plans for another parish to the east.

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True Adoration

07-21-2019This Week in Vidi DominumFr. Chris Axline

It is with great joy that we once again celebrate the feast day of St. Mary Magdalene. For us, since she is our patron, we celebrate her feast day as a liturgical solemnity which means that we treat July 22 as if it were a Sunday, or another high holy day (such as Christmas, Easter, and Pentecost). This means that we can (and should) celebrate her feast day with great joy!

Recently, a priest invited me to cultivate a deeper devotion to St. Mary Magdalene in my own prayer life, and, heeding his advice, the Lord revealed two very powerful attributes about St. Mary Magdalene. First is the radical conversion and re-orienting of her life entirely to Christ. Second is her ability to surrender all things to Him.

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