Dear St. James Family,

Greetings on the Feast of St. Mark the Evangelist. St. Mark is the man who wrote one of the gospels, brought the faith to Africa, and was martyred by being dragged to death. I am grateful to St. Mark and others like him who gave so much to pass on the faith to us.


I pray that these fifty days of Easter that we are currently moving through, are filled with joy and hope amidst the many challenges that you face from day to day. During this springtime season, be sure to check out the growth opportunities below as well as the latest updates.


News and Announcements


Help the Growth of Our Diocese by Giving in Support of our Seminarians

Last Sunday, we held a collection for the Seminary Formation Fund. If you missed this and would like to make a contribution, you can do so this Sunday using the pre-addressed envelopes that will be available or by giving online. Thank you for your help insuring the stability and growth of the Ordinariate by sending a gift in support of our seminarians (see picture of some of them above).


Lease Update: Bathrooms, Asbestos Progress, Awaiting Contractor Bids

Submitted Drawings to Contractors: Last week our architect provided me with the completed drawings for our renovation project. I immediately forwarded these to the general contractors who will be submitting bids for the job. I followed up with them this week and they informed me that they are working hard to bring together bids. I have appointments with two of them who want to see the space for further information. I am hoping to have their bids soon so that we can choose one and finalize the construction contract.  

Asbestos Remediation Bids Obtained: I have obtained three of four bids to remove the asbestos found in the building. I am in conversation with the remediators to finalize the bid and get this started soon.

Bathroom Renovation Begins: Because we do not need permits for the bathroom work, two generous parishioners from St. James have begun replacing the toilets, one sink, and repairing some of the tile work among other tasks that need to take place.

Projected Timeline: Contractor chosen by middle of May. Permits received by September (takes 3-4 months). Work complete so that we can move into the space in December.

Learn more about the building project.

Why are Some of the Songs in Latin the Last Few Sundays?

At St James it is our practice to sing the Propers (Gloria, Holy, Holy, Holy, Lamb of God) in Latin during Christmas and Eastertide, since these are the Church’s high seasons. During these times we are reminded that the official language of the Catholic Church is Latin and that we are part of a global Church that goes beyond local customs and languages. It is the desire of Mother Church that the faithful are able to sing at least some of the parts of the Mass in Latin so that when the faithful come together from different countries, they can sing together at least some of the parts of the Ordinary of the Mass in the international language of the Church. You can read more about this in the General Instruction of the Roman Missal, which is found in the beginning of every Roman Catholic Altar Missal. This is why we are singing in Latin right now.

Upcoming Events

Building Community with Name Tag Sunday: April 28, 2024

At the last Sunday of every month, everyone is encouraged to don a name tag upon arrival so that we can better get to know one another. You will find the tags and markers waiting for you. Thanks for helping us build community at St. James.   


Hands on Prayer Workshop, May 6, 2024 at 7:00 PM

The basis of effective evangelization is ongoing union with God, without which there is no true evangelization. At this workshop, you will get a chance to not only learn about, but actually pray through the most powerful forms of prayer within the Catholic Church: The Liturgy of the Hours, The Rosary, Mental Prayer, Lectio Divina and others, depending on time. RSVP is requested due to limited space. You can either respond to this email or drop me a text 904-999-1423. Thanks.

Join us for a Joyful Rogation Sunday Procession, Sunday, May 14, 2024

On the Sunday immediately prior to the Ascension, after the 10:15 AM Mass we will process out of the building singing the beautiful hymn O Jesus, crowned with all renown and then chanting the Litany of the Saints in thanksgiving for the beauty of God’s creation and to ask him for protection and guidance. Why are we doing this? The word Rogare, Latin for asking, is a practice that reaches back to fifth century Church practice in Vienna in which days were set aside for processions and prayers. The practice spread, especially amongst the Celtic tribes in Gaul (central Europe), and was officially adopted by Pope Leo III for the entire Church in the late eight century. English speaking Catholics hosted especially devout Rogation festivals involving processions, costumes and banners, food and drink, leading up to the feast of the Ascension. Rogation gatherings were greatly muted during the time of the Catholic persecutions in England, but are now being revived within the Ordinariate


Two Weeks Away: Ascension Mass on the Actual fortieth Day after Easter – Holy Day of Obligation

On Thursday, May 9, 2024, in celebration of our Lord’s ascension into heaven, we will be celebrating Mass for this most holy solemnity. Unlike some dioceses this day is not moved to Sunday in the Ordinariate, but remains on its traditional Thursday, forty days after Easter Day as is recorded in Scripture (Acts 1:3, 9).

If you are an Ordinariate member, this is a Holy Day of Obligation. You can fulfill your obligation by attending any Mass on May 9, even if it is simply a daily Mass and that parish is not celebrating the Ascension on that day. If you are not an Ordinariate member, then no worries. Ascension Thursday is not a Holy Day of Obligation for you, but still a great day to come to Mass and for this most holy solemnity.

TRAFFIC: Remember, traffic is bad this time of the day in the Mandarin area, so leave yourself plenty of time to arrive by 5:30 PM


Why are Catholics Required to Attend Mass on Certain Days?

One of the differences between Catholic and Protestant Christians is that Catholics have what are called Holy Days of Obligation (HDO), that is all Sundays and also a few other days of the year (Ascension Thursday, some Marian holidays, and Christmas). On these days Catholics are required to attend Mass unless for a serious reason they are not able to attend.

Why is this? I can think of a few reasons

  1. Encouragement: Sometimes, we need this extra help to get to Mass. Most Mass days I want to be at Church for the celebration of the Mass, but there are some days when I do not. But after I go I am always glad that I did and I’m happy that I had the help of the HDO to get me there.

  2. Authority: The Catholic Church sees itself as having God given binding and loosing authority and exercises this authority for the good of the Church. One of the ways that this is done is through HDOs

  3. Humility: Obedience to these HDOs helps us to practice self denial and grow in holiness


Other Upcoming Dates

  • Children & Family Formation and Fellowship: May 5 | 12:00pm | The program is currently designed for children kindergarten through eighth grade (ages 4-13). Parents are welcome and encouraged to be at and assist with the sessions.

  • Ascension Mass: [Thursday] May 9 | 5:30 PM Holy Day of Obligation

  • Pentecost Potluck: Sunday, May 19 following 10:15 AM Mass

  • Bishop Pohlmeier Visit: Sunday, July 14, 2024 at 10:15 AM Mass


    For further information on all upcoming events visit:


Latest Homily

How to Shepherd Others – Delivered on April 21, 2024

Many people think that only pastors are called to shepherd, but if you have been baptized into Christ, the Good Shepherd, then you too are called to shepherd toward good pasture. Learn how to do this in easy, concrete, practical, and highly effective ways. 

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




Events from Around the Larger Church

Holiness through the Sacrament of Marriage: Learn about Teams of Our Lady

Connect with other married couples, grow spiritually, have fun. A team is comprised of five to seven couples whose marriage is recognized in the eyes of the Catholic Church. The team meets one time per month, rotating from one home to another. The team shares a simple meal, prayer, sharing on endeavors, and a study topic. Teams of Our Lady is a movement of “married spirituality” officially recognized by the Holy See under the Pontifical Council for the Laity. Attend an information meeting to learn more:  Friday, April 26, 6:30 PM at St. Matthew’s Catholic Church, Schiavone Parish Hall. Friday, May 10, 6:30 PM at Holy Family Catholic Church, PLC Room 211.



Speaker Series

Join Bishop Emeritus Felipe J. Estévez and Dr. Jack Daniels for a lecture series exploring key encounters with Jesus in the Gospel of John. Don’t miss this journey of discovery as we encounter Jesus in fresh and transformative ways, moving from darkness into the radiant light of his love and truth. The lectures are from 7 to 8 p.m. each Tuesday in April at Marywood Retreat & Spirituality Center – Villa C Conference Room. To register for FREE, call Brianna McCoy at (904) 436-6592.

April 30:  From Darkness to Light: Jesus and the Man Born Blind (Jn 9) 
May 14:  The Bread of Life (Jn 6) 

Click here for the flyer


San Juan del Rio Parish Mission April 28-29

The parish mission is two days and features Steve Angrisano an internationally recognized Catholic composer, presenter and passionate music missionary traveling worldwide for over two decades, sharing his unique blend of humor, story and song. The event is free and open to all. The mission will start on Sunday at 6:30 p.m. and conclude at 7:00 p.m. on Monday. Click here for flyer.

Divine Mercy with Steve Angrisano April 29

The National Shrine of Our Lady of La Leche will provide an Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament immediately following the noon Mass at the shrine church, 101 San Marco Ave., St. Augustine. The Divine Mercy Chaplet will be led by Steve Angrisano at 2:45 p.m. and Benediction to follow. Click here for a promotional flyer. For more details, email or call (904) 824-2809.


Indigenous Women and the Indigenous Origins of the Spanish Camino Reales in Florida May 9

Join us at the National Shrine of Our Lady of La Leche at Mission Nombre de Dios, 101 San Marco Ave., St. Augustine for an enlightening lecture by Denise Bossy, Ph.D., associate professor of history at UNF who specializes in Native South history and women. In this two-part lecture series for the St. Augustine Historic Festival, she will discuss indigenous women, the indigenous travel networks that laid the foundations for the Spanish Royal Roads in La Florida, and routes along the Camino de las Americas. This lecture series celebrates the newly opened Camino del las Americas. Light refreshments and wine will be served at 5 p.m., followed by the lecture at 5:30 p.m. The event will occur at the Father Lopez Room of the Pilgrim Center. To register, visit For a detailed flyer, click here.

The Camino de Santiago: Pilgrimage Past and Present May 10

Join us in celebrating the newly opened Camino de las Americas on May 10 at the National Shrine of Our Lady of La Leche at Mission Nombre de Dios in St. Augustine for a fascinating lecture on the Camino de Santiago. This famous Spanish pilgrimage route has inspired travelers for centuries. The event begins at 5 p.m. with light refreshments and wine, followed by a lecture at 5:30 p.m. David Sheffler, Ph.D., history department chair at UNF, will be discussing the development of pilgrimage literature on the Camino de Santiago de Compostela. Limited spots are available, reserve your seat now by visiting For a detailed flyer, click here.

Mary’s Divine Motherhood Presentation May 11

This month’s speaker is Father Mac Hill who will delve into Marian Dogma related to Mary’s divine motherhood. The public is invited to this free event as part of the Shrine Speaker Series on Mary. The Shrine Church opens at 9 a.m. with the presentation beginning at 9:30 a.m., followed by a question-and-answer session. There will also be a rosary at 11:15 a.m. and Mass at noon. For more details, visit

Treat Your Mother to a Scrumptious Brunch for Mother’s Day

Join us in celebrating all moms for the annual Marywood Mother’s Day Brunch on Sunday, May 12.  A delicious brunch buffet will be served including new favorites like giant stuffed pancakes and omelets made to order. The first seating will be available at 10 a.m. and the last seating is at 12:30 p.m. Adults are$33 each and children between the ages of two and 12 are $12 each. The Marywood Retreat & Conference Center rests on the St. Johns River with 100 acres of beautiful live oak trees and gardens. It is located at 235 Marywood Drive in St. Johns (32259). Call Ansley Irwin at (904) 436-6591 to make your reservations today!