In addition to being a Basilica, and the Mother Church of Phoenix, Saint Mary’s is also the parish church for downtown Phoenix, with pastoral responsibility for all who live, work and visit within our parish boundaries. The dramatic growth and development of central Phoenix has meant that our parish has changed almost beyond recognition in recent years. Many of our registered parishioners (our membership) do not live within our geographical parish, but choose to make St. Mary’s their ‘parish of choice’ for many reasons, whether due to family history, a love for traditional architecture and liturgy, a commitment to Franciscan spirituality or links to St. Mary’s High School.
St. Mary’s Basilica is responsible for providing spiritual care to a diverse and thriving downtown community. This includes the many visitors whom come to downtown Phoenix to enjoy theater, symphonies, sports venues, restaurants, or stay in the downtown hotels for work or pleasure. In addition, we welcome hundreds of thousands convention goers at the Phoenix Convention Center across the street from St. Mary’s Basilica. Our visitors often find their way to the Basilica to pray or sit still to escape the hustle and bustle of downtown Phoenix. Many come for our daily liturgies.
Medical and University Outreach
Arizona State University and the University of Arizona have thriving campus in downtown Phoenix. St. Mary’s Basilica interacts with these institutions and provides spiritual care for the young adult Catholic community. The Franciscan Friars also provide pastoral care for Banner University Medical Center, caring for the sick, hospitalized and those in need of sacramental ministry.
Poor and Homeless Outreach
Most importantly, as a Franciscan community, is our commitment to the homeless and poor who call St. Mary’s Basilica their home. We strive to welcome and help meet their spiritual and social needs. For it is in them that we most clearly see the face of God reflected. Last year the Society of St. Vincent de Paul at St. Mary’s Basilica provided emergency food, rental and utilities assistant to 4,500 households who reside in downtown Phoenix, Arizona.
Catholic Institutional Outreach
The Diocesan Pastoral Center, St. Mary’s High School and Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church (a national Hispanic non-geographical parish) all lie within our parish boundaries. We strive to provide support to each of these Catholic Institutions. Whether hosting diocesan celebrations, St. Mary’s High School’s Baccalaureate Mass, or providing priest celebrants for Immaculate Heart we are committed to our fellow Catholic institutions.
Our parish is bordered by St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church and St. Agnes Catholic Church to the North, St. Anthony Catholic Church and Sacred Heart Catholic Church to the South, St. Mark Catholic Church to the East and St. Matthew Catholic Church to the West.
Map of our Parish Boundaries: Parish Boundaries