Franciscan Sister Leonette Kochan shares on Bishop Gerald Kicanas’ recent 50th Priesthood anniversary celebration in Tucson, AZ.
Some of our Sisters from Tucson, Sierra Vista, and Casa Grande joined the Diocese of Tucson and the local Tucson community in the recent celebration of Bishop Gerald Kicanas’ 50 years of priesthood. The jubilee observance began with Mass at St. Augustine Cathedral, attended by large numbers of priests, deacons, vowed religious, and laity from the Diocese. Special guests also included clergy from many faith congregations as well as civic leaders. Attendance by seven brother bishops was led by Metropolitan Archbishop John Wester of Santa Fe. Archbishop Wester joined Bishop Kicanas’ sister, Barbara, and Rabbi Thomas Louchheim of Tucson in speaking with great love, appreciation and respect for Bishop Kicanas.
The many gifts that Bishop Kicanas brings to the Tucson Diocese and community and to the global Church were well expressed in the following words of those who know and have worked with him:
Kevin Courtney, Pima County and Southern Arizona Interfaith: Bishop Kicanas is a consistent voice on behalf of the poor, immigrants, refugees and all those on the margins.
Dr. Carolyn Woo, Past President of Catholic Relief Services, in traveling with him on behalf of CRS: Always in his eyes was a gaze that shone with empathy, love, pain at their suffering, and the promise that God is present.
Rabbi Thomas A. Louchheim: I think of him as our modern-day Betzalel, who built the Tabernacle in the Sinai Desert. God said of him, “I have filled him with the Spirit of God in wisdom and in understanding and in knowledge in every kind of work.” This is descriptive of our blessed Bishop of Tucson. For his skill, understanding, and wisdom, we are most thankful.
The Diocese of Tucson and all whom Bishop Kicanas’ has touched in his 50 years as priest are richly blessed by this Servant Leader.