Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)

The following are some frequently asked questions. Please click on the topic below to jump to that topic.

How do I submit a prayer request?
What is a Mass Intention?
What is up with the Think Tank? (Update January 24th, 2009)
What programs do we have for Seniors in Our Parish?
What is up with the Think Tank? (Update December 14, 2008)
Diversity: What programs are in place for the Hispanic Community?
How do St Ann parishioners give of their Time Talent and Treasure?
Is St Ann a Giving Community? Who do we serve
What Does a Deacon Do?
What is Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration (PEA)?
Is St Ann an Active Church?
Why is the tabernacle in the chapel rather than the church?

 

Why don't people genuflect in the new church? What is appropriate to do as you enter the church?
At daily Mass, why do we skip the ending prayer at certain Masses?

 

What does a deacon do?

 

What is the difference between stewardship and capital contribution?
Will we build an elementary school?
Will we build a high school?
What is Life Teen?
Tell me about "Fast" and "Abstinence" during Lent.

Tell me about appropriate etiquette for the church.

How do I submit a prayer request?
Should you need to request a Mass prayer intention for someone who is ill or has died, you only need to call the office (972-393-5544) or sumbit the request online. These are then added to the Mass prayer list and sent to the Prayer Chain Ministry. Prayer Requests are printed in the bulletin for the following two weeks. Should you request need to be extended you only need to notify the office.

The Prayer Chain Ministry is made up of parishioners who pray for the intentions of other parishioners, their family/friends. The Prayer Chain works via e-mail. Members receive a prayer request and pray for that intention. Members appreciate being able to serve and be a blessing to others through one of the greatest gifts we have been given - prayer! It is a great ministry for parishioners who want to be of service to others but do not have the time for scheduled activities. For more information or to join the Prayer CHain ministry, click here.
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What is a Mass Intention?
Offering Mass for a special Intention is a long standing tradition in the Catholic Church. It is usually considered that special graces are obtained for whom the Mass is said. Masses are offered for many reasons, for the souls in purgatory, in remembrance for someone who is deceased, or in honor of a birthday. If you would like to have a Mass said for someone, go to the Parish Office. They will help you with the dates and times which are available. Cards are then given to you so that you can mail them to whomever you choose to so they may also participate in the Mass. The stipend or offering given, signifies the sacrificial nature of giving of something of yourself to associate more intimately with Christ who offers himself in the Eucharist.
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Think Tank Update January 24th, 2009
The results are in and we have been working to organize the data. There were over 10,000 surveys completed for all of the five weeks. Of these, about 8,000 were paper copies which had been completed during each of the 7 Mass times each week for 5 weeks. These had to then be keyed into the online survey to compile the results.

Once these were entered we then had to extract all the comments to combine with the other comments received either directly or during the Think Tank Weekend. Once completed there were over 7,000 comments from the Parish which we categorized then sub-categorized so that we could begin to understand what the concerns were. These comments along with the results of the surveys will be reviewed this weekend by selected individuals during a workshop.

The workshop, being sponsored jointly by the Parish Pastoral Council and the Parish Finance Council, invited over 150 parishioners leaders of our parish. Fr. Bill Jarema came back to facilitate the group and review the data to begin identifying what the goals and objectives for the parish should be in a positive, proactive and futuristic manner.

This is the first of many sessions which will be conducted by the Pastoral Council to develop the Pastoral Plan. The Council will continue working on these goals and objectives and will present the final plan to Msgr. Duesman for his approval. Once approved, they will be published to the Parish.

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Seniors in Our Parish
Our senior citizens are a growing segment of our parish population. Those over the age of 55 account for over 26% of the total parish.

There is a ministry just for this age group known as, Faithful Friends. Anyone who is 55 and older is invited to come together at their monthly meeting where they build fellowship. Each month they have a meal while enjoying games, Bingo, socializing and have even had a hayride at Monsignors family farm. As the membership grows, they can see the group expanding to include additional Bible or Book Studies, service opportunities, planned outings and other things. If you don’t have transportation to the meetings, give them a call and they will arrange for someone to pick you up and take you home.

Faithful Friends is a member of the Dallas Diocesan Seniors Council . This group meets at different parishes through the year, publishes a monthly newsletter and plans the annual 50th Anniversary Mass for all in the Dioceses of Dallas. The purpose is to build community in the Dioceses and was started by former Bishop Thomas Tschoepe many years ago.

This month, Faithful Friends are privileged to have the Dallas Diocesan Seniors Council meeting here at St. Ann on February 12. All Seniors are invited to attend the Mass at 10:00 am followed by a potluck lunch in the SAC Room 331. Contact Bunny Morrow at (972) 393-6277 or Tom & Judi Samson at (972)304-1809, for more information or to arrange transportation.

The workshop is being sponsored jointly by the Parish Pastoral Council and the Parish Finance Council, invited over 150 parishioner leaders of our parish. Father Bill Jarema cam back to facilitate the group and review the data to begin identifying what goals and objectives for the parish should be in a positive, proactive and futuristic manner.

This is the first of many sessions which will be conducted by the Pastoral Council to develop the Pastoral Plan. The Council will continue working on these goals and objectives wan will present the final plan to Msgr. Duesman for his approval. Once approved, they will be published to the Parish.

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Parish Administration Office
The Parish Administration Office is open to help you in various ways. The following is a list of some of the ways they can assist you and bi-lingual assistance is available.
  • Registering in the Parish
  • Infant Baptisms, Weddings & Funerals
  • Bulletin announcements
  • Bulletin advertising
  • Mass/Pulpit announcements
  • Donations (cash or household items)
  • Purchasing or ordering Cash Cards (formerly Building Bucks)
  • Mass intentions & Novena Cards
  • Adding a name to Prayers of the Sick or Deceased
  • Requesting a Parish Letter of Good Standing
  • Walkway of Life or Children’s Prayer Garden Bricks
  • Hispanic Ministry Requests
  • Access to the building during Pre-school hours
  • Questions regarding your donations
  • Change of address or phone number
  • Scheduling the parish facility
  • Emergency Assistance
  • Making an appointment for a confession
  • Bring items to be blessed
  • Safe Environment Information
  • Turning in a pledge for Stewardship or Capital Campaign
  • Requesting a Sacramental Certificate
  • Register a compliment or a complaint 

The Parish Administration Office can be found at the South East Corner of the Courtyard and is open as follows:

    Monday to Thursday:  8:00 am - 8:00 pm

    Friday:                       8:00 am - 5:00 pm

Please stop by and they will assist you in getting the answers to your questions.

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Think Tank Update December 14th 2008

The Surveys are finally all entered into the on-line application and we are about to embark on reviewing the data. The response was much greater than we had anticipated and it took us some time to get the data entered.  Thanks for the outstanding response.

 

The average number of surveys each week were:

                        English       Spanish         Total

Average/wk      1,657            456             2,113

 

We found that in addition to the Think Tank Weekend comments, each week we had anywhere from 1,200 – 1,500 comments on the surveys. These are also very important with many good ideas expressed.

 

There were over 25 volunteers who entered the results of the paper copies. We want to THANK each of them for spending so much of their time making sure everyone's comments were entered so your voice will be heard.
 

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Diversity

 

Our parish’s diversity is growing more and more every day. To accommodate the needs of our parishioners many ministries have adapted themselves to better serve the Hispanic community which makes up 25% of our population.

 

For example, ministries such as RCIA, CRHP, Pro- Life, Children’s Liturgy of the Word, Religious Education, SAY, and most currently Life Teen, have programs for the Hispanic community. These programs, along with many others, have translated their literature. The Spanish community has responded greatly to these ministries.

 

There have been new catechetical classes for Spanish speaking children developed. We have seen these classes doubled in size the following year.  It is very common to see bilingual children with non-bilingual parents. Due to this fact, a lot of parent’s have difficulties staying involved in their child’s catechetical life.  Parents are very appreciative that time has been taken to consider diverse families and providing support for them.

 

We hope to be able to continue to better serve all of our Parish Families.
 

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Time, Talent and Treasure
 

St. Ann Parish is full of people who give of their time, talent and treasure.
 

 

Annually: St. Ann’s Men’s Club, along with parishioner support, have given over 500 Thanksgiving baskets his year to those in our area. The Magi Ministry, with lots of parishioner support, have around 2,800 Magi gifts for distribution through Catholic Charities to various locations throughout Dallas. In addition, there are two Mission trips to help those in the Diocese of Linares, Mexico. St. Ann also gives generously to the various appeals throughout the year in the form of second collections and Kids Eat Free feeds children every summer who otherwise would not have a lunch. 
 

 

Monthly: St. Ann’s collects canned goods for the food bank during the first weekend of each month.  There are a couple of ministries that cook dinners for the homeless and AIDS victims.   
 

 

Weekly: Catholic Charities brings a truck and picks up the generous donations parishioners have made to help others.  The Waste Not Want Not has a dedicated group of volunteers who on a weekly basis visit grocery stores to pick up food that would otherwise be thrown out.  This food is given to Catholic Charities for distribution.

These are only a few of the ways people at St. Ann give so generously during the year. In all, each of you help in so many others in so many ways.

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A Giving Community
St. Ann Parish is a giving Community. St. Ann Parish gives its fair share to the Diocese every month.  In addition we send monthly financial support to three other less fortunate parishes in the Diocese; Blessed Sacrament, St. James, and St. Edwards.

Just like you, St. Ann Parish also supports other activities which include programs such as the Bishops Pro-Life Dinner, Holy Trinity Seminary, John Paul II High School, Angels of Charity, Bishop Dunn School, White Rose, Catholic Charities, Mt. Carmel as well as many others.
 

 

St. Ann Parish also helps those closer to home. We provide support for the local Catholic Charities Office, Christian Community Action, as well as our own parishioners who are in need.  There is a special committee that reviews these cases and helps determine how best individuals can be assisted.

As detailed in the Annual Report of 2007, the Parish gave roughly 15% of its budget to support these efforts. Tithing at the Parish level is just as important as it is for each of you. Together, we follow Christ’s teachings to help those less fortunate.
 

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What Does a Deacon Do?
The deacons that serve our Parish do more than just serve at Mass. While a Deacons primary role is “to proclaim the Gospel, preach, and teach in the name of the Church” they also, “as ministers of Sacrament, baptize, lead the faithful in prayer, witness marriages, and conduct wake and funeral services.” 

 

Deacons go through a formation period with one year of discernment and five years of studies. Becoming a deacon is one of the steps taken by those working to become a priest which is the same as the permanent deacon.  Once a deacon’s instruction and discernment is completed and are approved, they are ordained by the Bishop. They are then assigned to a parish, just like our priests, and work for the Diocese. It is not only” WHAT a deacon does, but WHO a deacon is, that is important.”

 

Most of the deacons at St. Ann, also have full time jobs outside the parish since the deacon position is voluntary. A deacon, “in virtue of his sacramental ordination and through his various ministries, is to be a servant in a servant-Church.”

We are blessed that one deacon, Tomas Baca, is on staff full-time to work with the needs of our Hispanic parishioners. Deacon Pete Markwald retired from corporate life and spends significant time at the parish serving as well as leading our Grief Ministries, CRHP, as well as many other areas. Deacon Ed Scarborough and Deacon Kory Kilgore have full-time jobs, but help out in various ways at St. Ann.

 

Please make sure to give your thanks to these men for all they do for us by doing Gods work. Should you need to reach one of the deacons, check the bulletin for their email or phone information.
 

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Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration?

Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration is done 24 hours each day for 365 days each year, except the Easter Triduum, with over 400 people who are dedicated to spending an hour with Christ each week. For each of the 168 hours in a week, there are two adorers scheduled with Our Lord in prayer, spiritual reading or reflection.  During this time we must never leave the Blessed Sacrament alone. Ours is the only Adoration Chapel in the Diocese of Dallas available 24 hours each day.

 

Our Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration (PEA) chapel was dedicated in honor of Pope John Paul II for an increase to Vocations from our parish. Since it’s inception on May 28, 2005, we have had over 20 men and women from our Parish consider vocations with the church.  It is now located in the St. Ann Center (SAC) and has a special access code for the night hours for security reasons.
 

 

The practice of Perpetual Adoration began in the 1200’s praying with the presence of Christ in the Eucharist. . The Eucharist is placed in a monstrance and placed on the altar. This Eucharist is changed each week with a consecrated host. In building our present chapel, changes had to be made to add the skylight since natural light is a requirement for a PEA chapel.

During Vatican II, Pope Paul VI interrupted an ecumenical council in order to promulgate a papal encyclical. The title of this papal encyclical was Mysterium Fidei, the purpose of which was to lay to rest various false opinions concerning the Holy Eucharist devotion outside of  Mass. Pope John Paul II, like his predecessor, encouraged Eucharistic Adoration.
 

 

If you are interested in learning more or to become an Adorer, visit our website or contact the PEA Coordinator, Bruce Dunphy, at 214-693-1989 or bdunphy@tx.rr.comAnswer the call of Christ, "Come to me in the Blessed Sacrament".

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An Active Church and Church Facilities
Our facility is a flurry of activity through out the week and on the weekends. We have 7 different Mass times each weekend, 2 daily Masses and Reconciliation times. Additional sacraments and occasions celebrated in the Church and Chapel are Weddings, Co-validations, Quinceaños & Anniversary Masses along with Baptisms twice a month. While there is a relatively young membership in the Parish, we still have seen an increase in the number of funerals to 2 or more each month.

On Sunday evenings, as well as on Wed. during the week, we have SAY (600 teens) and Life Teen (500 teens) as well as Life Teen Parents for Life and Why Catholic? We also have 110 other ministries which use the facility on a regular basis at any time during the week and weekends.

Religious Education and Child Faith Formation classes (1,300 students) meet on Mon – Thursday nights and use the classrooms as well as other space. While RE meets, we have choir practices, 5 various Bible Studies, 4 CRHP groups, 5 various levels of ESL classes, Men’s Club, Knights of Columbus, Boy Scouts, Prayer Shawl, Various Rosaries, 2 RCIA classes, Adult RE, Consolation Ministries and 5 different levels of Familia classes. On top of that we have both the Pastoral & Finance Councils with their various committees as well as others, holding meetings also.

With everyone living their faith through the various ministries, we are maxing out our capacity for meeting space from Sunday thru Thursday evenings. During the day there is ECDC, MYC, Bible Studies, Familia, and additional RE classes, to name a few.

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Why is the tabernacle in the chapel rather than the church?

The current liturgical norms allow for the placement of the Blessed Sacrament in the main church. It cannot, however, be in a direct axis from the altar, i.e., it cannot be centered on the wall or space behind the altar (presuming it is located in the center of the sanctuary, from side to side). The guidelines also allow and encourage the tabernacle containing the Blessed Sacrament to be located in a separate chapel, very near the main church and visible to the people.

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Why don't people genuflect in the new church? What is appropriate to do as you enter the church?
Genuflection is done our of reverence to the real presence of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. Therefore, if the tabernacle is not located in the main church there is no genuflection. Instead the norms call for a head bow before entering the pew.
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At daily Mass, why do we skip the ending prayer at certain Masses?
 

The norms are:

  1. If the Blessed Sacrament is placed on the altar or other place for adoration of the faithful immediately after communion, then that ends the Mass with no further prayer or blessing.
  2. If the Blessed Sacrament is place for worship after the Mass, then the Mass concludes as usual.
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What does a deacon do?

 

This question usually seeks to discover what a deacon can do that a priest can do, or conversely, what a deacon cannot do that a priest can do. The deacon may preach, proclaim the Gospel, baptize solemnly, witness marriages, conduct funerals and preside at Benediction and Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament. He may also perform certain blessings and is an ordinary minister of the Eucharist. He may not celebrate Mass, hear confessions or administer the Sacrament of the Sick.

When defined in terms of functions, the deacon is permitted to perform certain liturgical functions by virtue of his ordination, but all such functions may be delegated to lay persons by the bishop in extraordinary situations.

The diaconate is a ministry of service. The authenticity of a deacon’s ministry is not judged by the extent of his liturgical functions or if he preaches at Mass. Rather, the authenticity of a deacon’s ministry is determined by his service to the parish community and the witness of his life and ministry.
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What is the difference between stewardship and capital contribution?
Stewardship supports the ordinary operation of parish activities and facilities. Capital funds support the construction or pay for the debt incurred through capital improvements. In the current situation, capital funds are used to pay the $3.3 million debt on the recent completed project (church, parking lots, plaza, class/meeting rooms. If there is a shortfall in capital, we then use money (if available) from stewardship for debt service.

Will we build an elementary school?
The decision as to a parish elementary school is ultimately one to be made by the members of the parish.
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Will we build a high school?
Currently there are neither discussions nor plans for a high school. The cost (both construction and operations) is far greater than that for a primary school.
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What is Life Teen?
The Life Teen program is a comprehensive youth ministry program for teens in grades 9 - 12 with a strong focus on the Eucharist. Starting with a weekly Life Teen Mass, high school teens are placed in an environment where they have the opportunity to experience fully the greatest gift we have as the Church. This liturgy provides the cultural connection for the teens - allowing them to take ownership of their faith. They begin to develop a relationship with Jesus that is both real and personal. Immediately following the Mass, teens gather for the Life Night to learn about the Church and their faith in challenging ways. To learn more click here.
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Tell me about "Fast" and "Abstinence" during Lent.
The law of fast and abstinence in the Diocese of Dallas and the National Conference of Catholic Bishops has determined that the following practice shall prevail in the United States. Fasting is to be observed on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday by all who have celebrated their 18th birthday and have not yet celebrated their 60th birthday. Abstinence from meat is to be observed on Fridays of Lent by all who have celebrated their 14th birthday.
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Tell me about appropriate etiquette for the church.

We come together in the liturgy to praise, thank and petition God.

My House shall be a house of prayer! All of us need to schedule time for personal prayer in our lives on a daily & weekly basis. Prayer is the most important aspect of our lives as disciples of Jesus. Prayer is additionally the most helpful preparation for the liturgy. To that end I ask that when you enter the church proper, you spend the time before Mass in quiet & personal prayer. This not only indicates a reverence for the Lord, but a respect for others who desire a quiet time of prayer before Mass begins. I suggest the following guidelines that will be helpful to all of us.

A. Please do not bring cell phones or pagers to Mass, or make sure they remain turned off during the liturgy. If you are expecting an important call or page, please attend the Mass from the narthex. If you wish to visit before Mass, please do this in the narthex or courtyard. The courtyard is wonderfully inviting. The usual hospitality will be available after Mass, and I encourage you to stay after Mass to meet with friends or make new friends.

B. Please bring no food (including) gum) or drink into the church. This is a gathering in which Jesus will give Himself as food & drink.

C. Respect for others gathered together. If your child becomes noisy, please bring the child into the narthex & continue to follow the Mass from there until your child is ready to return.

D. How we dress does indicate where we are. The liturgy is not a pool party, a picnic, a cocktail party nor a casual get together. Do you dress as a HOLY PEOPLE, the BODY OF CHRIST? I think that business casual should be the standard. Shorts, T-shirts are too casual for the gathering of the People of God in prayer & worship. Flip flops are inappropriate, as are gym/running shoes (no matter what the cost). Avoid dressing in an offensive or suggestive manner. The principle question to ask yourself is: Is my clothing or my conduct something that will distract other people in prayer? These proposed guidelines are not meant to include babies or very young children.
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