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

Fr. Luis Peñaloza is pastor and welcomes you!

St. Elizabeth (707) 869-2107; 1405 Woodland Drive, Guerneville, CA 95446; email: churchelizabeth@comcast.net. Please scroll down for mass schedules and parish information.

  • Outdoor Church Cleanup Dates: Sat. June 10 & Sat. June 17
  • SAVE THE DATE: Monte Rio Variety Show, Thursday, July 27th
Monte Rio Variety Show &  Raffle
The 106th Annual Variety Show is planned for July 27th.  Mark your calendars for this summer tradition – an evening of great entertainment that supports St Catherine’s.  The proceeds of the raffle will be specifically designated for the purchase of a new keyboard and amplifier for St Catherine’s (our instrument was destroyed in the 2015 fire).   Please help us support this need which is anticipated to cost approximately $2500.00
Our raffle prizes this year are fabulous – Dinner for 20 at the Union Hotel, Northwood Golf 1 yr Membership, River Rock Casino wine tasting and gambling package, the Taste of Monte Rio gift package, and a weeks stay in a condo in Puerto Rico.  Tickets for raffle are 1 for $5.00, 3 for $10.00 or 8 for $20.00.  Need not be present to win.
Variety Show admission tickets are $30.00, sold after Masses in July or go to brownpapertickets.com
 Monte Rio Variety Show website: monterioshow.org 


Bishop Robert F. Vasa addressing the confirmandi at the confirmation mass May 21, 2017 concelebrated with Fr. Luis Peñaloza, Pastor of St. Elizabeth’s, and Fr. Lauren Allen, pastor of St. Philips. Both parishes had members confirmed.

Click HERE for photos and videos of the Confirmation Mass.


Fr. Michael Gaitley’s Marian Consecration can be done individually or in a group. For further information visit the website. If you are interested in doing the retreat as a group, here are pricing options on the coordinator’s kit which includes a larger sized book, DVDs of Fr. Gaitley and the study guide. Speak to Fr. Luis if you are interested in doing this Marian Consecration.

5:00 PM Saturday Vigil Mass

9:00 AM Sunday (choir and instrumentalists) 

9:00 AM Mass Tues thru Friday 

Outdoor church from July through Labor Day.

The rosary is recited before week day mass at 8:40.

  • Tuesday: Adoration following Mass
  • Wednesday: Devotion to Our Lady of Perpetual Help following mass
  • Thursday: No mass or services third Thursday of the month
  • Friday: Following mass there is Annointing of the Sick, Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament (for one hour); Confessions are heard during the latter part of the Exposition at about 9:50 AM. During Lent Stations of the Cross are held at noon on Friday.

Right of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) classes 9:00 AM to 10:30 AM Fridays, St. Hubert’s Hall.

St. Catherine of Siena, Monte Rio: No Masses until further notice due to fire damage.

St. Colman, Cazadero: 11:00 AM Sunday

St. Elizabeth’s Guild wishes to thank all who donated and volunteered last week end to make the Rummage Sale successful. The Guild is planning a second rummage sale for October, 2017. Date will be announced soon.


Come and join us for our

Hope Works Wonders Tours! Join us for a tour of our programs, meet some of the people we serve, and learn about all the ways Catholic Charities helps our community.  


Tours last only an hour – the experience lasts a lifetime.

Tours are held from 12-1pm at the 

Family Support Center

465 A Street, Santa Rosa

(behind the Macy’s parking garage)

Thursday, May 25th  

Friday, June 9th   

Thursday, June 22nd   

Thursday, July 6th  

Friday, July 21st 

Please call or e-mail Margie Pettibone at 707-528-8712 ext. 161 to reserve your spot.


It is more than a year since the fire at St. Catherine of Siena and Dan Demers has sent us recent photos the pews which have been sanded and refinished, now in place.  Thank you to Dan and all other those involved in the restoration.


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.

Heads Up: Summer is near and we will need volunteers to clean up the outdoor church. Watch the bulletin for date and times! The Guild also invites parishioners to participate in the after mass coffee. Home made baked goods, fruits, savories and breakfast/brunch treats are welcome! Outdoor mass usually starts July  4.



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

Plesase 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

Catholic Charities Alzheimer’s Respite Center

We are looking for volunteer to ork in our Alzheimer’s Senior Respite Center. This is an innovative day actiity program for people with dementia that provide music, art, and other appropriate activitie while allowing family members much-needed time off from full time caregiving. Open M-F 9 am to 3 pm.

The Catholic Charities Family Support Center is seeking front dek reception volunteers! FSC is the largest shelter for familie in Northern CA, serving up to 138 homele people daily. Program include case management,, employment and housing counseling, health and wellness and other supportive services.

If you’re interetested in either of these volunteer opportunititie or to hear more about the other programs that volunteer serve in through Catholic Charities, please contact Maureen Mendoa at 707-528-8712 ext 160 or email nmendoza@srcharities.org.

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. One of our favorites is the Raford Inn which is about 10 minutes from St. Elizabeth’s.  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 and Sue Tierney; 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; Eric Lindenbusch, tenor, is cantor and plays cornet;Doris Belluomini sings alto; Sean and Therese Brown play cello and violin respectively.

Our choir also serves the broader community by performing in the Parade of Lights in December and appearing at an Alzheimer’s care center. Here is a video of the choir singing in the local Christmas parade 

JesusIsComing from Irene Deem on Vimeo.


If you would like to show your appreciation, send a donation to St. Elizabeth’s marked for the music ministry. Mailing address is St. Elizabeth’s Church Music Ministry 14095 Woodland Drive Guerneville, CA 95446.

Your donations will be greatly appreciated.

Outdoor mass is said from July 4th thru Labor Day at 9:00 AM. The outdoor church is located in the wooded area across Armstrong Woods Road and is wheelchair accessible.

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. Here is a link to map of Guerneville area.


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 Siena, Monte Rio; no services at this time due to fire.

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 couple 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!

St. Elizabeths Guerneville St. Catherine Monte Rio St Colman Cazadero
Mass schedules for St. Elizabeth, Guerneville,St. Catherine, Monte Rio and St. Colman’s, Cazadero.

Click image for larger views.

Note: Enjoy the outdoor masses at St. Elizabeth’s and St. Colmans. Join us for coffee after the 9:00 am Mass at St. Elizabeth’s.

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


St. Elizabeth's First Communion Classes
St. Elizabeth’s First Communion Classes

FIRST COMMUNION / CONFIRMATION CLASSES Classes start Oct. 11, 2014 at 4:00 PM and are held in the church. Tuition is $25 plus the cost of materials. Registration forms are in  the back of St. Elizabeth’s church. This is a two year program.

Thank you to our sponsors who advertise in our bulletin:

Jim Laufenberg, Realtor, Coldwell Banker, (888) 565-4114;  jim@sf-realty.com

Sonia, Licensed Acupuncturist (707) 235-7598

Santa Rosa Mortuary and Eggen & Lance Chapel (707)545-3747

Guerneville Glass (707) 869-3793

Pleasant Hills Memorial Park and Mortuary (707) 823-5042; http://www.pleasanthillsmemorialpark.com

Cazadero Supply (707) 632-5257

Gene Gaffney Insurance Services (707) 874-2666

Gaddis Construction (707) 836-9109

Lark Drugs (707) 869-9055

Parent-Sorenson Mortuary (707) 829-5433

River Run Coin Laundry – in Raley’s Shopping Center at Fulton and Guerneville Road

Washing Well Laundry, 106 N. Cloverdale, Cloverdale

McPhail Fuel Company (707) 285-3525

Larry Moyer Insurance (415) 897-9437

River Plumbing (707) 869-0660

Burke’s Canoe Trips (707) 887-1222

Thank you to our Russian River Food Pantry and fellow St. Vincent de Paul member, Mike's Fruit Garden (on River Road right after you leave Hwy 101.) Mikes has generously donated beautiful baskets of fresh fruit and vegetables for years!
Thank you to our Russian River Food Pantry and fellow St. Vincent de Paul member, Mike’s Fruit Garden (on River Road right after you leave Hwy 101.) Mikes has generously donated beautiful baskets of fresh fruit and vegetables for years!
Mike's Fruit Garden, Fultonn
Beautiful fresh fruit for needy families donated by Mikes Fruit Garden


St.ColmansOutdoorChurch SEChristmasOutsideWEB  StCatherinesWEB

Left: St. Colmans’s Outdoor Church, Cazadero

Center: St. Elizabeth’s, Guerneville

Right: St. Catherine of Siena, Monte Rio

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.

12 thoughts on “Home

  1. Irene, what a great job I was impressed by all these wonderful things that you did. keep it up!
    hopefully, people will take advantage of this. I will announce this this weekend for all to see and share.
    Fr. Luis


  2. Irene:

    One very slight puncutation correction — The Church in Cazadero is St. Colman, not pluralized. Other than that very minor correction, you should be commended for the website development and hosting.



    • Thanks Michael. It’s a funny thing how we speak of the three churches in the possesive. I even did it on the logo! Thanks for drawing it to my attention, and I will make corrections.


  3. Hello Fr and Choir,
    We were wonderfully treated to one of the most beautiful Christmas music during mass this Sunday, 12/27/2015. My family are really thankful!

    Keep up your joyful ministry to reach more for Christ!

    Chris, Gina and Hu Family


  4. Is there a handicap entrance to St. Elizabeth’s? I had hip surgery and there are too many slippery steps for me to feel safe.


    • I apologize for answering so late. Unfortunately there is not a handicap entrance, but starting July 3 the 9:00 AM Sunday mass is held at the outdoor church, which is handicap accessible. St. Philips in Occidental and St. Sebastians in Sebastopol have easier access.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s