Saint Theresa Parish

A Roman Catholic Community
5045 E. Thomas Road
Phoenix, AZ 85018
(602) 840-0850 Parish Office
(602) 840-0871 Parish Fax  

Parish Email

Parish Office Hours
Monday through Thursday
9:00AM-Noon & 1:00PM-5:00PM
Friday 9:00AM-Noon          Sunday 8:30AM-12:30PM

Closed Saturdays
& most Federal Holidays.

Liturgy Schedule
Saturday Vigil Mass 4PM
Sunday Masses
9:00AM (Liturgy with Children)
11:00AM and
5:00PM (Teen and Young Adult)

Daily Masses
Monday through Friday
6:30AM and Saturday at 8:00AM
Holy Day Masses as announced in bulletin prior to the Holy Day.

Sacrament of Reconciliation
Saturday, 9:00AM to 10:00AM
Wednesday, 5:00PM to 6:00PM and by appointment


Rev. Charles G. Kieffer

Parochial Vicar 

(Associate Pastor)

Rev. Joachim Adeyemi

Rev. J.C. Ortiz

Assisting Priest

Rev. Paul Peri


Colin F. Campbell

Mark Kriese

Ralph Ulibarri


Saint Theresa Catholic School
5001 East Thomas Road
Phoenix, AZ 85018

(602) 840-0010 School Office
(602) 840-8323 School Fax



« Reflections - April 21, 2019 | Main | Reflections - April 7, 2019 »

Reflections - April 14, 2019

My Brothers and Sisters,

Once again, we find ourselves on the threshold of the most sacred time of our Church Year – aptly called Holy Week. Celebrating Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion today, we recall how Jesus entered in triumph into Jerusalem – with crowds spreading their cloaks and strewing palm and olive branches before him, while calling out “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!” as they praised God for the mighty deeds they had seen accomplished through Jesus.

How quickly that triumphant, joyful exultation turns somber… as we listen to the proclamation of the Passion of the Lord, recounting the experiences of Jesus as the “hosannas” fade into memory and Jesus, fully God and fully human, enters into the days of fulfilling his destiny to share a final meal with his disciples, to be denied by those closest to him, tried as a criminal, led to an agonizing death on a cross and then placed in a tomb. All of this, though, is just a prelude to what we will celebrate in a week and for fifty days thereafter… death being conquered by new life and the path to eternal life being laid open to us. 

Our “high holy days” in the Catholic Christian tradition are the three days of the Paschal Triduum (pronounced “trih-doo-um”) beginning Holy Thursday with the Evening Mass of the Lord’s Supper and culminating with the Easter Vigil in the Holy Night of Holy Saturday. Technically this is one continuous liturgy: on Holy Thursday we begin with the Sign of the Cross (as at all Masses) and the concluding Sign of the Cross is the final blessing at the Easter Vigil. Unique annual rites take place during the Triduum: at the Mass of the Lord’s Supper, we commemorate Christ’s mandatum (or mandate) to serve as he served. This is ritualized by the Washing of the Feet at Mass, followed by the commemoration of the institution of the Holy Eucharist celebrated in the Eucharistic Prayer. Immediately after Communion, all are invited to join in a procession to Fr. Feeney Hall where the Eucharist is reposed until midnight for silent adoration (commemorating Christ’s agony in the Garden of Gethsemane). On Good Friday, the Triduum Liturgy continues with the Celebration of the Lord’s Passion, the Procession and Veneration of the Cross and Holy Communion. This is a very powerful service which is not a Mass at all (the Church’s ancient tradition prohibits the celebration of Mass on Good Friday and Holy Saturday before the beginning of the Easter Vigil). At the conclusion of the Good Friday liturgy, the church is left bare and empty through Holy Saturday (even the Eucharist is absent from the tabernacle) – this commemorates the time that the body of Jesus lay in the tomb and his spirit descended to the realm of the dead. Shortly after sundown on Holy Saturday, we gather in a darkened church for the Easter Vigil – lighting the Easter Fire, blessing the Paschal Candle, listening to the Hebrew scriptures foretelling our salvation… followed by the Gloria, the singing of the Easter Alleluia and proclamation of the Resurrection Gospel. The Elect are baptized, confirmed and receive their First Eucharist at this first Mass of Easter.

This year, due to the time of sunset, the Triduum Liturgy begins at 7:30PM on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The Triduum is an experience all Catholics should have at least once – as it is that time when we enter into the central mysteries of our faith. I encourage you to make time to join us for all three parts of the Triduum Liturgy.  It can truly be a life-giving and faith-enhancing experience!

Additionally, Stations of the Cross are prayed at Noon on Good Friday in the church and on Holy Saturday morning, the ancient Office of Tenebrae (psalms and scripture readings) will be prayed at 5:30AM. All are welcome. No Masses apart from the Triduum Liturgy are celebrated on Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday. Confessions are not scheduled on Holy Saturday (Please note: the last opportunity to attend Reconciliation before Easter will be this Wednesday, April 17th, from 5:00 – 6:00PM). On Easter Sunday, Masses are celebrated at 6:00, 7:30, 9:00, 9:15 and 11:00AM. The 6:00 and 9:15 Masses are outdoors in the school courtyard. There is no 5:00PM Mass celebrated on Easter Sunday.

I look forward to us sharing our community’s journey through these holiest of days, in union with the Church throughout the world.


Grace and peace in Christ,

Rev. Charles G. Kieffer