Dear St. James Family,

This Sunday we welcome Fr. Ernie Davis, a retired priest of the Diocese of Kansas City. Fr. Ernie was originally ordained as an Episcopal priest forty years ago. Then, twenty years ago, after coming into the Catholic Church, he was ordained as a priest for the Diocese of Kansas City through the Pastoral Provision (a special program put into place by Pope St. John Paul II, for Episcopal priests to come into the Catholic Church and to get special permission to be ordained as married men). In addition to diocesan assignments, he founded Our Lady of Hope, an Ordinariate community. He retired in 2021 and moved with his wife to Amelia Island where he currently resides.


I am grateful for his generosity in coming to hear confessions and celebrate Mass at St. James this Sunday so that I can get away with the family for a few days of rest and connection. We are looking forward to visiting Weeki Wachee Springs State Park. I am heading out of town late this afternoon and will be returning on Sunday evening. I look forward to being back with you next week.

Prayers for Kenneth and Brandon as they Prepare to Enter Church


Kenneth Workman and Brandon Smith have been preparing over the past year to be baptized this Easter! As this date comes closer, the weeks leading up to their entrance into the Church grow in spiritual intensity and so the Church offers special prayers for them. This Sunday at the 8:00 AM Mass and the following two Sundays they will be asked to come forward after the homily to kneel for the intercessions that will be prayed over them. Thank you for your support and prayers for them.

Dinner for New Attenders and Curiosity Seekers: Sunday, April 2, 4-7 PM


This dinner is a great opportunity for those who are interested in learning more about the history, vision, and people of St. James. The evening will take place at the home of parishioner, Wendy Cruff, a dog lover who lives in Mandarin and is an amazing cook and excellent host with a gift for making others feel welcome and relaxed. It will begin with dinner during which people make introductions and begin getting to know one another and I will be sharing a bit of my story. After dinner, I will be presenting on the history and vision of St. James and sharing opportunities about how you can become more involved.


Space is limited. At the last dinner we hosted in January, we hit the maximum of twenty-four people which is all we can fit in the space. Because St. James is going through a period of vigorous growth right now, I am thinking that this one will also be full, so reserve your spot as soon as possible to assure attendance. The next welcome dinner is not scheduled until May 21, 2023 so jump on board this one if you are able :-). Here are the full details.

Temporary Location Change for Easter Sunday Only


On April 9, 2023 we will be meeting for Mass at Hardage-Giddens Funeral Home Chapel. The Mandarin Community Club, where we normally meet for Mass, is not available that weekend due to the Art Festival which has been held at the Club on Easter weekend for over fifty years. We will be back at our normal location at the Mandarin Community Club the following Sunday.


However, this little address change is in many ways a great blessing to us. It is becoming more common for us on Sundays to run out of room to put up more chairs, so this larger chapel will assure enough space for all of the people that the Lord has been sending our way, which is especially important on Easter. Also, the chapel is a beautiful space and quite the upgrade for us, which brings grandeur to this important high point of the Church year.


Address: Hardage-Giddens Funeral Home, 11801 San Jose Blvd, Jacksonville. Do not go to the wrong Hardage-Giddens since there are two of them on San Jose. We are at the one down in Mandarin.

Upcoming Dates at a Glance


Check out All Upcoming Events at the Website

The Spiritual Retreat: Tried and True Method for Jumpstarting Growth in Holiness – Most recent homily


Learn about the importance of getting away to be with the Lord in what is commonly called a retreat. Discover where this concept came from and why so many saints point to a retreat as the beginning of their growth in holiness. Learn how to overcome the hurdles that stop some people from entering into this immersive experience: fear of solitude, negative past experiences, or lack of time.


Listen to this and my other homilies at or by searching “Fr. Mayer’s Preaching & Teaching” wherever you get your podcasts

Congratulations to New Ordinariate Members Doug and Michelle Nesmith


Doug and Michelle, who began attending St. James last year, were recently accepted as Ordinariate members. They are now officially listed in the Apposite Register of Members of the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of Saint Peter, with all the rights and obligations as a member of the Diocese.


What does it mean to be an Ordinariate member? Everyone in the Catholic Church is normally under the oversight of a bishop (one of the successors of the apostles). By default, when you become Catholic you are automatically under the spiritual authority of the local bishop. Those who want to transfer their membership to the Ordinate do so by completing this application. Being an Ordinariate member means that the Ordinariate bishop is responsible for you no matter where you live and that you can be confirmed or married or ordained within the Ordinariate. It also means that you have one extra holy day of obligation (Ascension Thursday) and three extra Fridays (Ember Fridays) when you are obligated to give up meat.


However, even without being an Ordinarate Member, any Catholic can attend Mass and receive communion or confession at an Ordinariate community. We have many non-Ordinariate members who attend St. James. Do keep in mind that for us to take the next step in our development and to be recognized as a Quasi-Parish, we need to have 50 Ordinariate Members. Currently we have 39. Read more about Parish Development Benchmarks.

Financial Update: Giving Continues to Move in the Right Direction

  • Giving for February: $7,522.18 | Monthly Average Giving for past twelve months: $7,094.74 (average giving at this same time last year: $4,807.94)

  • February Expenses: $5,589.45 | Covers quarter of priest’s support, half of pension, travel, liturgical supplies, music, building rent and liability insurance, advertising, bishop’s tax, almsgiving, hospitality

  • Capital Fund February Balance: $45,728.60 | Used for long term purchases, when St. James is ready to move into long term leased facility ($75,000 needed for buildout), or to purchase property.

  • Our Own Space: help us increase our monthly average giving to $10,400 in order to move into a leased space allowing for daily Mass, 24/7 tabernacle access, classes, gatherings, meetings, space for children’s ministry, an office for Fr. Mayer. At our current growth rate we will meet this goal during 2024.


Faithfully, your pastor,

Father Mayer

Parochial Administrator