(Photos courtesy St. Francis of Assisi Parish)
The St. Francis of Assisi Parish first Communion class marches in a parade during a festival at the East Palo Alto parish Oct. 5.
Archbishop celebrates St. Francis feast with East Palo Alto parish
October 23rd, 2012
By Valerie Schmalz
Close to 700 people crammed into St. Francis of Assisi Church to greet Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone, who visited the East Palo Alto parish to celebrate the feast of St. Francis on Sunday, Oct. 7. The visit was the first to a parish by the archbishop, who was installed on Oct. 4, St. Francis’ feast day.
A mariachi band played and the Tongan community bestowed a lei on Archbishop Cordileone as part of an afternoon of entertainment, food and general celebration on the last day of the three-day festival. A bilingual Mass in Spanish and English was celebrated to start the afternoon with the archbishop.
The parish includes active ethnic communities of African-Americans, Latinos and Tongans as well as many Catholics of European descent, including Lil Kavanaugh, whose family donated the land where the church now stands and who was among those greeting the archbishop, pastor Father Larry Goode said.
Festivities included a parade, a dinner, entertainment and a movie about St. Francis, Father Goode said.
“We’re celebrating St. Francis, and he picked St. Francis’ feast day as the day of his installation,” Father Goode said of Archbishop Cordileone. “When I saw this, I thought this would be a great day for him to come to St. Francis since we do go all out. And of course, his coming was much more.”
The parish is the only one dedicated to the saint in the archdiocese, Father Goode said, and the parish takes its responsibility seriously. “If you hear of anyone doing bigger than ours let me know so we can surpass them,” the pastor said. “If we could get a band to come we could go onto University Avenue.”
From October 26, 2012 issue of Catholic San Francisco.