Name of Church St. Francis of Assisi
Address 1425 Bay Rd., East Palo Alto, CA 94303
Phone number 650-322-2152
Mass times Saturday vigil, 6 p.m. (Spanish) Sunday, 7:30 a.m., 9:30 a.m. (Spanish), 11:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m. (Spanish). Weekdays, 8 a.m., 6 p.m. (with Latin Tridentine Mass on Fridays).
Confession Saturdays, 4:30 – 6 p.m. or call for an appointment
Names of priests Fr. Lawrence Goode (pronounced “GOOD-IE”), pastor. Msgr. John Coleman, a 90-year-old retired priest, is in residence. Some may remember Fr. Goode once served at Our Lady of Peace Parish in Santa Clara alongside its pious and orthodox pastor, Msgr. John Sweeny, who built the well known 32-foot statue of the Blessed Mother in front of the parish. Msgr. Sweeny spent his final years (he died in 2006) in residence with Fr. Goode at St. Francis of Assisi.
School No school, but the parish offers religious education classes for children and adults.
Special groups There is a Youth Club (visit https://catholiccharitiessf.org/our-programs/youth-club/). It was established by Fr. Goode after his arrival in 2003. The area is high crime (Msgr. Coleman was injured in an assault on the street in 2015); the idea originally was to provide boys with safe, positive activities to occupy their time after school. Today, it provides a variety of services and activities for young people and their families. There is a Knights and Ladies of Peter Claver group, as well as many prayer groups for Spanish speakers.
Homilies Fr. Goode is orthodox and devoted to his parish community. His homilies are short and to the point; since his congregations are often a mix of English and Spanish speakers, you might have him deliver his homily in English and repeat it in Spanish. Fr. Goode also serves as chaplain to a local chapter of Courage, a group which helps people with same-sex attraction live in accordance with the teachings of the Church.
Music Depends on the Mass; choirs in English and Spanish
Fellow parishioners Primarily Latino; many are Mexican immigrant families who work in the Silicon Valley service economy
Cry room No
Additional observations This is a poor parish in the southeastern end of the San Francisco Archdiocese. Although previously it had been a violent area with gangs and a high murder rate, the area has improved somewhat. No doubt the good work of the parish has been a factor. The staff and parishioners have made an effort to bring the Faith to the community; for example, in Lent you’ll see the Stations of the Cross being held in the streets.