Mass for the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of the Church
Wishing you all the blessings of Pentecost!
Mass for the Day Pentecost, May 31, 2020
Sunday Chat from Fr. Luis May 31, 2020
Sorrowful Mysteries to Stop the Violence in Our Cities
Pentecost at the Pantheon. This is what Fr. Luis described today, the rose petal shower. The petals are tossed from the roof by the firemen of Rome.
Vigil Mass for Pentecost

St. Elizabeth Church will be open to 10 people at a time between 9:00 and 10:15 for devotional prayer only, there is no mass or eucharistic service. .The church has been sanitized. You must wear a mask and practice 6 foot social distancing. Mass is not offered. To cope with the issue of contamination of the touch surfaces such as the railing on the front stairs, you will find disposable gloves at the foot of the stairs. Remove them when you enter the foyer and dispose of them. When you exit the church, take a new pair of disposable gloves from the bag and use them for the banister when you go down the stairs. You will find a trash container for that purpose. There is no obligation to attend, this is just an opportunity to pray in the church your special devotion on Pentecost.

Pentecost Blessings to you all! Thank you to our choir who have sent a bouquet of Pentecost Songs. Enjoy them HERE.

Happy Anniversary Fr. Luis!

MassSaturday, May 30, 2020
Luminous Mysteries Thursday, May 28, 2020
Emergency Chat Wednesday May 27. As of 27, 2020 there are 25 reservations for 9:00 nd 2 reservations for 11:00.
Mass for Wednesday, May 27, 2020 Memorial for St. Augustine of Canterbury.
Glorious Mysteries for Wednesday, May 27, 2020 for the Pandemic

Mass Sign Up Instructions – We are leaving these instructions up as we anticipate the protocols will remain in place when churches in Sonoma County are allowed to open. We will revise as directed by the Health Advisor and the Diocese.



  1. Remember that the Sunday obligation is still lifted.  This means any mass during the week [weekdays as well as weekend mass] is as good as a Sunday Mass.   Look for days and times that work for you and especially take advantage of the weekdays.
  2. Sign up for any Mass you want to go.  The process to sign up is given below.  There is an instructional video at the bottom and the link to sign up.
  3. Please let others who might not have heard yet that we are offering Mass, point them to the website, and explain to them how to sign up.


Who should not come:

+ Anyone  who is elderly and /or compromised in health should not come.

+ Anyone who is sick or showing any cold or flu like symptoms cannot come.

+The dispensation from Mass by Bishop Vassa is still in effect and no one is required to come.  We will also still stream the Sunday Masses and other events on our websites rrchurches.com and Facebook.

+ St. Elizabeth outside chapel, Guerneville Sunday mass @ 9 am.

+ St. Coleman outside church, Cazadero Sunday mass @ 11 a.m.

+  Confession are available by appointment only.  Email Fr. Luis 20frluisp@gmail.com

Or call 707 321 0528


+ Keep a 6 – FEET DISTANCE FROM OTHERS AT ALL TIME [Family members can sit together

+ Sit in the assigned pews that have been sanitized and arranged for social distance.

+ Do not touch your face or anything else that you don’t have to.

+ Wear a MASK !

+ Please bring your own hand sanitizers with you

+ Bring a blanket to put on the bench you are sitting

+ Plan to be at Church at least 5 minutes before Mass time to avoid traffic at the entrance.

+ Communion is offered after Mass and it is row by row and you are asked to exit after receiving the Eucharist.

Pastor Fr. Luis Penaloza Sunday Morning Chat May 24, 2020
Luminous Mysteries, Thursday, My 21, 2020
Norma McFadden, who is Sue and Charlie Eckbert’s neighbor, made this beautiful banner for St. Elizabeth Catholic Church. Norma is starting one for St. Catherine of Siena as well. Making these banners is Norma’s way of fighting the pandemic!
Pentecost Sunday is May 31. 2020

Fr. Luis suggestions for movies and DVDs during the pandemic. With the rain, there’s not much you can do, so enjoy some coffee cake and these great old films and new media!

We must urgently ask parishioners to please mail your weekly contribution to the parish so that we can pay the bills. We anticipate a drop in donations as these restrictions impact people financially, so please be generous if you are able. Use the convenient PayPal button below (it accepts credit cards, you do not have to have a PayPal account to use it.) Thank you!

Donate Button with Credit Cards

If you prefer to donate by check, make the check out to St. Elizabeth Church and mail to St. Elizabeth Church, 14095 Woodland Ave, Guerneville, CA 95446. Thank you!

St. Vincent de Paul will be opening the Food Pantry Saturday, June 13 at St. Hubert’s Hall and do so the second Saturday of the month. Thank you to everyone for your ptience during the pandemic and look forward to serving you again.

The Media Ministry is pleased to announce that we are now able to live stream mass via Facebook, providing you with two options for viewing: http://www.facebook.com/stelizabethguerneville and http://www.rrchurches.com.

Special thanks to Kristen Power for making this happen. It saves hours of video encoding time!
This week end we had 71 visitors viewing mass on the website. We are reaching new friends on Facebook and praying this helps people draw closer to God during this frightening time.

As far back as 2010 the Vatican recognized the need for priests to use modern communications methods. Here is Pope Benedict XVI speaking on the 44th World Communications Day 2010:” The theme of this year’s World Communications Day – The Priest and Pastoral Ministry in a Digital World: New Media at the Service of the Word – is meant to coincide with the Church’s celebration of the Year for Priests. It focuses attention on the important and sensitive pastoral area of digital communications, in which priests can discover new possibilities for carrying out their ministry to and for the Word of God. Church communities have always used the modern media for fostering communication, engagement with society, and, increasingly, for encouraging dialogue at a wider level. Yet the recent, explosive growth and greater social impact of these media make them all the more important for a fruitful priestly ministry.” – http://www.vatican.va/content/benedict-xvi/en/messages/communications/documents/hf_ben-xvi_mes_20100124_44th-world-communications-day.html

We understand that many of you are suffering from information overload and we strive to provide content that serves the spiritual needs of the parish at this time. Your feedback is welcome.

Prayer for the COVID-19 pandemic. Here is the text from America Magazine.

Decree in Time of COVID-19 issued by Robert Cardinal Sarah – Planning for Holy Week and Easter Uncertain.

Resources for assistance concerning COVID-19 pandemic: www.findhelp.org.

No Masses, No Funerals, No Memorial Masses due to COVID-19 Preventive Measures until Further Notice.


Jesus Christ, you traveled through towns and villages “curing every disease and illness.”

 At your command, the sick were made well. Come to our aid now, in the midst of the global spread of the coronavirus that we may experience your healing love.

Heal those who are sick with the virus. May they regain their strength and heal through quality medical care. Heal us from our fear, which prevents nations from working together and neighbors from helping one another. Heal us from our pride which can make us claim invulnerability to a disease that knows no borders.

Jesus Christ, you traveled through towns and villages “curing every disease and illness.” Come to our aid now, that we may experience your healing love.

Jesus Christ, healer of all, stay by our side in this time of uncertainty and sorrow. Be with those who have died from the virus. May they be at rest with you in your eternal peace.

Be with the families of those who are sick or have died. As they worry and grieve, defend them from illness and despair. May they know your peace. Be with the doctors, nurses, researchers and all medical professionals who seek to heal and help those affected and who put themselves at risk in the process. May they know your protection and peace.

Be with the leaders of all nations. Give them the foresight to act with charity and true concern for the well-being

Letter from Our Pastor

Greetings to all! May the peace of Christ, which can never be taken away, be with you all.

Most of you have been informed of Bishop Vasa’s directive to suspend weekday and Sunday masses during this Corona Virus pandemic to minimize contaminating each other and spreading the virus. Our local and national leaders have called for sheltering in place, social distance of six feet and avoiding large gatherings.

The decision to cancel all masses was a difficult one to make because the Eucharist is the summit of our prayer. As a people of God we must support the decision of our church leaders, especially in these trying times.

God is and has been always with us, through flood, fires and now this awful situation. We will survive because we put our trust in Him. As I celebrate mass privately each day, I offer it for the welfare of our parishioners here in the River area.

During this Lenten season you have your books, WORD AMOUNG US, LENTEN REFLECTION OF Bishop Baron, and on line daily and Sunday mass offered at Wordonfire.org and other sites. At Dynamic Catholic there are daily videos using the saints as inspiration.

I’m aware that these coming months will be difficult for you financially. Please remember that your church family is your household, too. If you wish to set aside financial support, no matter the amount, please send your donation to St. Elizabeth, 14095 Woodland Drive, Guerneville 95446.

Peace and blessings!

Fr. Luis

Sonoma County Placed under Shelter in Place orders as of Midnight, March 17, 2020.

For requests for communion or confession, call the St. Elizabeth Catholic Church office at 707-869-2107.

Please read Bishop Vasa’s latest memo on preventive measures below.

COVID-19 UPDATE March 17, 2020 from Bishop Vasa, Diocese of Santa Rosa

Memo to All Pastors, Parochial Administrators, Parochial Vicars, Deacons and the People of God:

These are very challenging and troubling times which call for prayer, patience and great prudence. While recognizing that the faithful rely greatly upon the spiritual solace which weekly and daily Mass provide, the present threats to the physical health and wellbeing of entire communities require measures in the Church comparable and even greater than those taken by civil authorities. Being deprived, even temporarily, of the spiritual consolations of Mass and Holy Communion is a great cross. Yet, this does not mean being deprived of Christ, His love or His attentiveness to us. Sacrificing even Holy Mass and Communion for the sake of the health and safety of the entire community entails great suffering and distress. Yet, such a sacrifice must be made in the present circumstances.

As a Church we have many concerns. One of our concerns is the health and safety of our priests and our vulnerable brethren. The priests are very willing to put themselves in harm’s way but by doing so may become sources of infection for others. Thus, generosity becomes a risk for them and for others. Pastoral workers are urged to be extremely cautious and prudent about going to places where there is an increased risk of being infected or of inadvertently infecting others.

After hearing from pastors as well as medical professionals, I have determined that it is both prudent and necessary to cancel all Church related Masses and services until the threat of further infection with the Corona Virus is ended. This means that all weekend and weekday Masses are to be cancelled with the exception of the one ‘Private’ Mass offered by the priest each day without a congregation. Many weekday Masses are attended by more than 50 people and many more who could not avail themselves for Mass on Sunday may deem that it is “safe” to attend Mass on another day. Since this would most likely result in larger crowds, the threat of infection would be heightened, not lessened, by continuing daily Masses. Again, the only Mass should be the ‘private’ Mass of the priests in the parish without a congregation.

Sadly, funerals are also prohibited. Memorial Masses scheduled later are an alternative.

The provisions above apply equally to any Confirmation plans or schedules. Confirmations through May 10 are indefinitely postponed. All other Confirmation dates for this season are now Tentative.

Please pray for an end of this Pandemic and for safety for all Medical Professionals, Pastoral Workers and First Responders. There is need for an abundance of caution. All that we do going forward must be out of concern for the well-being, both spiritual and physical, of our people and of the entire community.

Bishop Robert F. Vasa
Bishop of the Diocese of Santa Rosa

Office of the Bishop Diocese of Santa Rosa
P.O. Box 1297
Santa Rosa, California 95402

Bishop Vasa Directives for Confession, Annointing and Indulgences as they are affected by the COVID-19 pandemic:

The MAGNIFICAT publishers have graciously offered free online access to the Magnificat at www.magnificat.com/free

Lectio Divino from USSCB for Fifth Week of Lent:

Fr. Luis Peñaloza is the pastor and welcomes you!

St. Elizabeth Catholic Church

14095 Woodland Ave

Guerneville, CA 95446

(707) 869-2107

Televised and Internet Masses Available

Televised Masses Available: San Francisco live stream masses: https://sfarch.org/livestreams?fbclid=IwAR1unNOJQ9W1lx0IBrZJABG12PbEkyGJExs5SFiYUIM9rwMDbj7HppSbxUc

EWTN (Ch 229)

      English: Daily Mass from Irondale, AL: 5:00 am PT, 9:00 am PT, 4:00 pm PT.

·         Spanish: Daily Mass with the Pope at 8:00 am PT, and at 5:00 am PT from Irondale

Mass from Bishop Barron’s Chapel https://www.wordonfire.org/daily-mass/

Vaticano reports on Holy Week in Rome
Be sure to get to confession soon!

Variety Show Goes Virtual for 2020

As you are aware Shelter in Place or Stay at Home mandates are affecting all public events. As a committee, we have cancelled the live event at the Amphitheatre.  We are also making a transition to an on-line raffle / auction and hope to make a short video with tributes, memories and some entertainer to post on our website.  

So, our plan is to have the 109th Annual Show, even if slightly different – our motto is the “Show Must Go On” and we know that you are all key to doing making this happen.

The event supports three beneficiaries – St Catherine of Siena Catholic Church, Monte Rio School Foundation, and the Monte Rio Fire Services Foundation.

Please contact us:  info@monterioshow.org
Visit our website at: www.monterioshow.org

We are praying for our generous partners, E. Guittard Chocolate Company and Stumptown Brewery who donate product for our Bodacious Barks each year!
We are waiting for news regarding opening the outdoor church and when to stage the rummage sale. We will update as soon as we know.

Welcome to St. Elizabeth, Guerneville and the Mission Churches of St. Catherine of Siena, Monte Rio and St. Colman, Cazadero

Caskets, Urns and Keepsakes Made by Trappists Monks

A Lenten supplement from Archbishop Cordeleone in San Francisco, providing meditations on the patron saints of the homeless:

Additionally Fr. Luis has ordered the books which will be on the table with hymnals.

Bishop Barron speaks to the problem of “imperialistic reductionism” which is a problem within the church today, where only one of the three essential missions of the church is over emphasized, disrupting the correct interaction of liturgy, evangelization and service to the poor.

Another Lenten series is offered by Dynamic Catholic:

HOME BOUND? EWTN (channel 229 locally) offers daily mass at 9:00 AM as well as a rich program schedule of news from a catholic perspective, apologetics, scripture studies, special events, church history and other content. https://www.ewtn.com/tv/schedule Also on EWTN Friday, Jan. 31 at 5:00 PM PST

Spiritual Communion:

By making an Act of Spiritual Communion, we express our faith in Christ’s Real Presence in the Eucharist and ask him to unite himself with us. Here is the Act of Spiritual Communion written by St. Alphonsus de Liguori:

My Jesus, 
I believe that You
are present in the Most Holy Sacrament. 
I love You above all things, 
and I desire to receive You into my soul. 
Since I cannot at this moment
receive You sacramentally, 
come at least spiritually into my heart.

I embrace You as if You were already there and unite myself wholly to You.

Never permit me to be separated from You.


Taken from https://www.ncregister.com/blog/armstrong/if-you-cant-receive-communion-make-a-spiritual-communion

Opens April 24, 2020
Congratulations to Bishop Robert F. Vasa, Publisher Christopher Lyford Editor and Arthur Waligora, Creative Director/Graphic Designer on the beautiful new format for the North Coast Catholic! Subscriptions are free for donors of $50 or more to the Annual Ministries Appeal. To donate go to the North Coast Catholic page
First Communion, Divine Mercy Sunday
First communion in our tiny parish is a great joy!

Monte Rio Variety Show Report

Our Monte Rio Variety Show event this year was very
successful! The net proceeds were almost $65,000, which
are split equally between the three beneficiaries ($21,600).
A check was delivered to Father Luis earlier this month for
$20,100. The balance of the proceeds ($4500 or $1500 per
beneficiary) are held back until the following July to allow
for start up funds for 2020. Thank you to all who supported
our event with your time, talent and resources. Together we
can make a difference. Our show next year will be on July
23rd 2020 – mark your calendars!


In 2018 we raised $17,000 through the Memorial Plaque Program for the Renovation of St. Elizabeth’s Outdoor church and in 2019 we raised $9,000 for restoration costs of the parish buildings through the First Annual Golf Tournament – The MacKenzie Classic. Just this February of 2020, TEAM CRAB brought in $7,000 to help in the restoration of our buildings – primarily roof and foundation replacement. Thank you to everyone who helps our parish through prayer, service, financial support or other support! We are blessed! 

New: As of April 23, 2019 St. Elizabeth and its mission churches were verified by Paypal and our processing fee is reduced from 2.9% + 30 cents per transaction to the non-profit rate of 2.2%  + 30 cents per transaction. Our parish now participates in the Paypal Giving Fund, Go Fund Me and eBay for Charity. Click on the links below to donate.

What’s the difference?

Paypal Giving Fund charges no fee; generates more than $100 million per year for charities; lists us as a charity making us visible to millions; issues you a donation receipt; you can chose to remain anonymous. Even if you cannot donate, please visit the link and share it via email, Twitter and Facebook (see lower right hand corner of page.) There is a link on this page to the Paypal Giving Fund FAQ page as well.

GoFundMe is free and is the No. 1 free fund raising platform (no platform fee, but there are the usual Paypal charity rate fees charged per transaction.) Paypal verification is the gateway to GoFundMe,

eBay for Charity: eBay raised more than $10 million for families of the 9/11 victims. It provides an opportunity for eBay sellers to donate a portion of their earnings to their favorite charity, and eBay buyers can donate while shopping. Click HERE for more information on this program.

The Russian River Food Pantry is a joint effort by St. Elizabeth Parish Volunteers of the St. Vincent de Paul Society, The Salvation Army. Service partners include the Redwood Empire Food Bank, Safeway “Feed the Need” program, and Mike’s Fruit Garden in Fulton. Food is now distributed at St. Hubert’s Hall (on Fourth Street behind the Guerneville Fire Station, following this years flood which affected the Russian River Community Church. See map at bottom of page.)


He determines the number of the stars; he gives to all of them their names. Ps 147:4
Enjoy news from the Vatican Observatory https://www.vofoundation.org/blog/in-the-sky-this-week-february-4-2020/.

Wedding in the St. Elizabeth Outdoor Church June 23, 2018:

Music by Mariachi Torres (707) 228-0646

The beautiful team of white Percherons, Jayder and Lucky, are provided by www.WineCountryWeddingCarriages.com, Julie Vasquez (707) 971-9660.


Fr. Luis has very kindly provided these books FOR FREE to assist us in becoming more holy. Please take them home and read them, they are located  on the tables with the hymnals.



Recommended Spiritual Reading
These books are offered FREE of charge at the back of the church, courtesy of Fr. Luis.

Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) online at https://www.catechismclass.com/about.php. Catechismclass.com also offers classes for adults and children, as well as a series of talks by Bishop

We do not have a religious education program at this time. St. Philip’s in nearby Occidental offers religious education. Click here for information.

restoration of St. Catherine of Siena Church, Monte Rio, CA
St. Catherine’s Church was dedicated in August of 1912. San Francisco Archbishop Edward J. Hanna presided at the ceremonies. The cozy little structure was built at a cost of $3,000 [$75,000 in 2017 values]. The church, constructed entirely of redwood, was not wired for electricity until 1948. -From Daniel J. Demers “The Church the Bohemians Built.” The church was damaged by a fire in 2015, here is the story.

Enjoy Dan Demer’s history of St. Catherine of Siena: The Church the Bohemians Built

There is a contact form below if you would like to join or are moving, or want to subscribe to the email version of the newsletter. This website is a volunteer effort for the convenience of our parishioners and visitors;  is not an official publication of the Catholic church.


Catholic nuns as nurses in US Civil War
Sisters of Charity, Gettysburg 1863
Sisters of Charity, Gettysburg 1863

Please enjoy reading parishioner/writer Daniel J. Demer’s latest publication, a fascinating story about Catholic nuns working with Florence Nightengale during the Civil War. We also congratulate Dan on the nice review of his new book, OLD WINE & FOOD STORIES, available on Amazon.

Enjoy North Coast Ecumenicist #3 , Dan Demer’s profile of the early California Russian Orthodox priest who shared warm friendships with Roman Catholic priests in Northern CA.  Ioann (John) Veniaminov would later become St. Innocent of Alaska.

St. Innocent of Alaska, Fr. Ioann (John) Vianiminov

SEBrochurev4 (use this version of parish brochure for printing)

SEBrochureWEB (low resolution of parish brochure for email/web viewing)

Pope Francis Encyclical LUMEN FIDEI  papa-francesco_20130629_enciclica-lumen-fidei_en

Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/stelizabethguerneville

Retreats: Our region is world famous for tourism, offering spectacular scenery and world class wineries.  Majestic redwoods, invigorating coastal hiking, delicious artisan cheeses, fresh salmon and crab (in season), kayaking on the Russian River, are just some of the attractions in our vacation environment that lend themselves to a restorative spiritual retreat. Here is a list of hotels and resorts.   We also encourage you to visit the other charming churches in our region. Here are two: St. Teresa of Avila and St. Philips in Occidental. We hope you plan a visit soon!

St. Colman’s Outdoor Church – a beautiful redwood grove, perfect for weddings!


Fr. Luis reminds us that singing is praying twice – a statement made by St. Augustine which is cited in the Catholic Catechism. We so appreciate the Music Ministry at St. Elizabeth’s which includes our choir and our guest instrumentalists and singers: Sopranos Misty North, Carol Kimbal; Tony Madrid, piano, John O’Connell and Noel Fahlen. Rebecca Brown, who taught Fr. Luis guitar years ago, travels from Rhonert Park; Winnie Myers (keyboard) comes all the way from Cotati; Stella Dunne, singer, comes in from Penngrove; Doris Belluomini sings alto; Sean and Terese Brown play cello and violin respectively. Eric Lindenbusch, tenor, our former cantor and cornet player has moved to St. Ann’s Parish in Bonners Ferry, Idaho – we miss him but are happy for him in his beautiful new home.


Fr. Luis often explains the importance of singing at mass by saying “Imagine if you just said the words of the song “Happy Birthday to You.” That is the difference that singing makes. St. Augustine writes:

So, then, my brothers, let us sing now, not in order to enjoy a life of leisure, but in order to lighten our labors. You should sing as wayfarers do – sing, but continue your journey. Do not be lazy, but sing to make your journey more enjoyable. Sing, but keep going. What do I mean by keep going? Keep on making progress. This progress, however, must be in virtue; for there are some, the Apostle warns, whose only progress is in vice. If you make progress, you will be continuing your journey, but be sure that your progress is in virtue, true faith and right living. Sing then, but keep going.


Here is a map showing the location of the St. Elizabeth’s Outdoor Church (Sunday 9:00 AM July 4th thru Labor Day.) You can drive cars down the dirt path for wheelchair access. Restrooms are in St. Hubert’s Hall. 


St. Elizabeth’s, Guerneville: Sat. 5:00 PM & Sun 9:00 AM. Enjoy the choir and instrumentalists at the 9:00 AM mass.

St. Catherine of Siena, Monte Rio, CA
St. Catherine of Siean, Monte Rio; mass is at 4:00 PM on Saturday

St. Catherine of Siena, Monte Rio: Sat 4:00 PM

St. Colman’s Church, Cazadero.

St. Colman’s Church, Cazadero. The outdoor church is about a half mile before you get to the church. Watch for the sign on the right, after crossing the second bridge.

St. Colman’s, Cazadero: Sun 11:00 AM

Information on St. Colman’s Outdoor Church Weddings

For other masses in the area visit the Santa Rosa Diocese website.

Office: (707) 869-2107

Email: CHURCHELIZABETH@comcast.net

Baptisms: By appointment. Preparation classes are required.

Marriages: Engaged couples are required to meet with the priest 6 months prior to the wedding date.

Confessions: By appointment. Call the office.

Enjoy this little boy named Augustine who played his imaginary violin during mass last Sunday!

If you would like to join one of the parishes or subscribe to the email version of the bulletin, please fill out this form.

Disclaimer: This blog is maintained by volunteer Irene Deem for St. Elizabeth’s Church and is not an official publication of the Catholic Church or the Diocese of  Santa Rosa