Brick by brick at St. Vincent’s, Marin County – CA

I am getting, finally, to a back log of interesting e-mail form readers:

Thought you’d be interested in some snaps taking during today’s celebration of the Feast of the Holy Name at the Archdiocese of San Francisco’s only weekly scheduled Mass in the Extraordinary Form. Fr. William Young is the celebrant.

We normally get 200-300 people in the pews. The schola is growing.

The Mass is held in the chapel (Most Holy Rosary) of St. Vincent’s boys home in Marin County, California just north of San Francisco.

Our church architecture in every age reveals what our Catholic identity was at the time, how we prayed, what we believed in.

Imagine… this is a chapel for a home for boys back in the day.


How were children valued?

What did Mass mean to those who built this building?

What was sacred then, is sacred now.

We are recovering ourselves and our senses.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Flambeaux says:

    Che bella! Grazie mille.

  2. cuaguy says:

    What wonderful pictures on such a sad day

  3. I love when I see cheribum on either side of the altar like that. It helps you remember that the Word is truly present there, and our “mercy seat” is now given through the Presence of Christ in the Eucharist

  4. Jonathan Bennet says:

    A very beautiful church. I agree that such a church for a mere boys home speaks volumes about Catholic identity.

    Look at the 16th-18th century mission churches in South America, Asia and Africa. Look at those for orphanages, guilds, hospitals, ect.

  5. JM says:

    I would add that Father Young’s sermons are some of the best I’ve heard in the few years I’ve been a Catholic. They are orthodox (of course) and enlightening. He has explained some things that I’ve never understood before, such as Catholic teaching about end times, with absolute clarity.
    While this Mass is in the Archdiocese of San Francisco, it is at the northern edge. Unfortunately there is no EF Mass within the city limits themselves. The closest EF Masses are in Oakland at an ICK church, and this one in Marin, and both are about 30 minutes from the city itself. Despite the reputation SF has, there are a lot of faithful Catholics in the city itself who would be well served by an EF Mass. I continue to pray for one.

  6. RBrown says:

    It seems the chapel is in San Raphael, one of the most beautiful places in California.

  7. ED says:

    This complex is huge and mostly abandoned ,it used to be a Boys orphanage. With this church it would make a great seminary for a TRADITIONAL community,anybody out their listening!!!

  8. RandJ says:

    What time is Holy Mass? We found 1100 on the internet and came early to enjoy the ambiance. To our surprise Mass was not at 1100. How can that be? We read it on the internet, it must be true.

  9. JM says:

    The Mass is at 12:15 PM.

  10. Chris says:

    Father- I was scrolling through your post here with my 2-year old daughter next to me and she saw the photo of the Father Young at the altar and exclaimed “Church! Mama church! Pray!” [Sweet!] Apparently the few times I have brought her to St. Agnes with me have made an impression on her and she instantly recognized this altar as “church”.
    If only every Catholic church and altar were so readily identified.
    They have something very wonderful going- I pray it continues to grow!

  11. Phillip says:

    Yes, this is the Sunday only EF in our archdiocese. Father Young gives awesome sermons that are very intellectual but clear enough for everyone to understand. Even time I step into the chapel, I love the atmosphere. The silence, the beauty, its amazing!

    PS I do not know if the sender knows but there is another weekly EF Mass, but on Fridays. Every Friday at 6PM, Fr. Lawrence Goode has an EF Mass at St. Francis Asissi Church in East Palo Alto. This is also the only Catholic Church in East Palo Alto. Every first Friday it is a Missa Cantata. The others are simple low Masses.

  12. Phillip says:

    Also, the Friday EF Masses at St. Francis Assisi are stated in the parish bulletin. So, I think they are technically “scheduled.” At St. VIncents, Abp. Niederauer “officially approved” the Mass. Fr. Goode just decided to start saying EF Masses, disregarding any so called “approval.”

  13. Brendon says:

    St. Vincent’s complex is really gorgeous. I think it should be made into a parish, and make it like many protestant and orthodox parishes, and unfortunately only some Catholic parishes, where people actually spend like and relax together on Sundays. They have tennis courts, fields, a gymnasium, classrooms, a kitchen, all sorts of stuff. Once the TLM community there grows, I hope they will use it.

    Meanwhile, the TLM has essentially be banned from San Francisco proper. Even people in leadership have essentially said “over my dead body” to having the TLM at the Cathedral. Fortunately, their bodies and the rest of their generation will be dead soon enough!

  14. DarkKnight says:

    That’s where I go. Nice to see so many of you there, too.

  15. David Young says:

    It’s great to see so many who worship at this EF Mass also read I was the one who sent in the notice to Fr. Z. My company (Joyent) hosts I was aware of the East Palo Alto mass, but didn’t realize it was weekly. Anyways, I’ve been talking with Fr. Z about coming out to the bay area to hold a retreat or deliver a series of conferences. If any of you in the bay area would like to help me organize this, please feel free to contact me at: david AT joyent DOT com. Thanks.

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