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St. Mary’s Basilica
Phoenix, Arizona

The Church of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary

In 2002 St. Mary’s Basilica expressed a desire to promote the historic significance and beauty of the church. A call went out for volunteers to conduct tours of the Basilica. It was felt tours were the best process in the promotion of St. Mary’s Basilica. I expressed interest in the project and started to develop the scope of such tours. The following is my study document developed in support of this effort. It was developed as a reference guide to the person conducting the tour and contains more information than would be presented during a tour of the facility. I have discovered that it does not answer all the questions that visitors may present. I must admit that while preparing this reference, I greatly improved my understanding of the traditions and beauty of “the” Church. My efforts have only raised more questions than developing answers.

Under no circumstance is this to be considered original work. It is a cut and paste of many publications available in the church library, internet, and the provinces of Sacred Heart and Saint Barbara. The principle source was the publication celebrating the first 100 years of the Basilica, “100 Years the Franciscans and St. Mary’s Basilica.” The early days of the Basilica were extracted from the many publications by the Province of The Sacred Heart web sites and publications. These are recognized under the “SOURCES” section .

I have included photographs of each art subject. These are included to assist others when conducting tours. The picture quality is amateurish as I found photographing of glass windows to be very difficult.

Special recognition is to:

The Altar Society of St. Mary’s. Text from many publications and pamphlets developed by the Society has been incorporated.
Fr. Evan Howard, O.F.M., St. Mary’s Church. When I was on switchboard volunteer duty, he always had a few minutes to answer my many questions on tradition and doctrine.
Fr. Alfonso de Blas, O.F.M., St. Mary’s Church. He always had time to answer my inquiries and he has never heard a stupid question. Many times though, he responded with, “Look It Up.”
Fr. Warren J. Rouse, O.F.M., Serra Retreat, Malibu, California who provided editing and corrected erroneous data. His tenure as Pasture is recognized as a principle in the beauty and history of the church.

I have no pride of authorship and welcome comments, critique and modifications to improve the purpose of the document. The study document is under constant revision as corrections and additional information becomes available. As a study document, it acts as a starting point for study and conducting tours. Detailed study should include those publications noted under SOURCES and the many documents in the Church, Diocese and Franciscan Retreat libraries.

Otis E. Burnett
06 June 2005

Click here to download and read the whole book (2 megabytes)


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