Although the Commitment Weekend for Our Catholic Appeal Year 2022 campaign has ended, we would like to encourage all parishioners to participate in this year's parish pledge. We want to thank all those who have already made their commitment and those who plan to in the future.
If you need guidance with completing your pledge form, you can call or come to the Parish Office, and we will be happy to assist you. If you need or don't already have an envelope, you may get one at the Parish Office.
We especially want to thank Dr. Dan Renuart and Jhon C. Daza, who participated and showed their commitment with their presentations last weekend.
Let us remember that as one family, we trust in the Lord!
We are so proud to be the first Parish in the Diocese of Orlando to have the statue of the Blessed Fr. Michael J. McGivney! Please take time to visit our newly-renovated Prayer Tower!
Please do not place real lit candles in the Prayer Tower. Please use electric candles only.
Thanks to the Knights of Columbus Councils 7091, 2608, and 10484, the Diocese of Orlando has its first statue of Blessed Michael McGivney, the priest who founded the Knights of Columbus. The statue is housed in a refurbished Prayer Tower at St. Ann Church in Haines City.
As Dominican Friars, Fr. Duber and I are celebrating the 800th anniversary of when our Founder, St. Dominic, was called to the presence of the Lord. St. Dominic, a strong man of faith and a faithful servant of the Lord, was born in Caleruega, Spain, on August 8, 1170, and died on August 6, 1221.
To live our entire life imbued in the love of Christ, to become one with Him in prayer, and to speak about God seems like a difficult challenge for us Catholics, but not for our founder, St. Dominic. He died at the age of 51 and had perpetual and perfect communion with God and his neighbors.
For Dominic, praying for sinners was his greatest concern; he always exclaimed, “What will become of sinners?”
At the age of 24, Dominic was ordained and was very close to Bishop Diego de Acebo and, at one point, accompanied him on a diplomatic mission to Denmark. Returning from their mission by way of Rome, he saw the necessity to preach the Good News of Salvation among many people who had been evangelized and involved in dangerous heresies; Catharism or Albigensianism, whose followers believed in two gods, one good that is in the New Testament and the other evil that is in the Old Testament. This vast misbelief led St. Dominic to start his mission in the midst of all that was wrong. He desired to help them understand the proper teachings of the Catholic Church. Filled with zeal and fervor to lead everyone to the truth, St. Dominic was able to win a hearing from the heretics through the strength of his character and the wisdom that came from God.
But his hard and dedicated work soon needed help. On December 22, 1216, he founded the Order of Friars Preachers. The newly founded Dominican Order spread rapidly as mendicant (supported by begging) preachers proclaiming the Gospel throughout Europe and beyond with ardor and enthusiasm.
He loved Mary, the Mother of God and our Mother, from whom he received the Holy Rosary, that for centuries has become the most beautiful meditation of the Mysteries of the love of God in Jesus through Mary. Pope Pius XI (1857-1939) stated, “The Rosary of Mary is the principle and foundation on which the very Order of St. Dominic rests for making perfect the life of its members and obtaining the salvation of others.”
On August 6, 1221, only a few years after the papal approval of his Order, Dominic Guzman breathed his last in the Dominican convent in Bologna. He was proclaimed a saint by Pope Gregory IX thirteen years later, who had known the great founder and preacher personally. Years later, St. Dominic was described by one of his spiritual children as being “as tender as a mother, but as strong as a diamond.”
As Dominicans, we continue with his legacy of 800 years of history. Thousands of great men and women have embraced the ideal of St. Dominic and have become the Church pillars that have made our Church holy. To only mention a few includes: St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Albert the Great, Blessed Fra Angelico, St. Catherine of Siena, St. Rose of Lima,
St. Martin of Porres, or St. Louis Bertrand.
For us, it is an honor, a significant responsibility, and a challenge to carry on 800 years of the glory of our religious community. It is also an honor to wear the habit that has been a sign of the TRUTH for centuries!
In St. Dominic,
Fr. Alfonso Cely
Fr. Alfonso Cely was born in Colombia in 1968. After studying Hotel & Tourism, he worked for American Airlines. He was then called to follow the Lord as a priest. Fr. Alfonso entered the Dominican Order in January 1993 and pronounced his first vows in 1994.
Fr. Alfonso studied Philosophy at St. Thomas University and Theology at the Studium Generale of the Dominicans in Bogota, Colombia. His specialization is in Dogmatics from Pontifical Bolivariana University in Medellin, Colombia.
In 1998, Fr. Alfonso performed his perpetual vows of chastity, poverty, and obedience.
He was ordained to the priesthood in 2001 by Bishop Augusto Castro on the feast of St. Charles Borromeo on November 4.
Fr. Alfonso came to America to work for the Diocese of Orlando as a missionary. Bishop Norbert Dorsey assigned him to Blessed Trinity in Ocala as Parish Vicar for nine years.
Bishop John Noonan appointed him as Parish Vicar at St. Mary Magdalene in Altamonte Springs for three years. In 2015, he was assigned as Pastor at St. Ann Church to this day.
He has found a wonderful family since he arrived in this country. According to Fr. Alfonso, "He will die in this blessed Land of Liberty."
We unveiled a beautiful surprise just in time for the celebration of Christ the King of the Universe! This beautiful hand-carved solid wood Crucifix was donated by an anonymous donor. God Bless You & your generous heart!
This shrine was donated entirely by the John XXIII Diocesan Movement, Haines City. Their love and dedication will be forever remembered at
St. Ann Catholic Church.
Thank you to the Diocese of Orlando for featuring our parish on the front page of their website and the Florida Catholic newspaper. We invite you to visit our new "Guadalupe Shrine" located on our church campus, a place for prayer and meditation to Jesus through Mary.