St. James Ministries


Altar Society (Arts and Environment): Use your artistic talents to decorate the church. To volunteer, or for information, call the Rectory, 762-4256.

Altar Servers: Girls and boys in 3rd grade through high school who have completed the sacrament of First Holy Eucharist are eligible to serve as Altar Servers.  Please contact Janet and Malcolm Carruthers, or (707) 766-7020 for more information.

Bereavement Support: This ministry helps parishioners deal with the loss of loved ones. To volunteer, or for information, call Sr MaryAnn (763-7411).

Bible Study: Make the Bible a part of your daily life. Check the parish bulletin or our Events page for the times and topics of Fr. Michael’s scripture classes.

[the text of the Holy Bible (Douay version) is available online - ]

[the text of the Holy Bible (New American version) is available online -]

Birthright: Birthright provides caring, non-judgmental support to girls and women who are distressed by an unplanned pregnancy. Using our own resources and those of the community, Birthright provides positive and loving alternatives to abortion. Birthright provides many services, including friendship and emotional support, free pregnancy tests, legal, medical, and financial assistance, assistance with housing, referral to social agencies, and maternity and baby clothes. Birthright treats each woman as an individual who deserves kindness and respect, as well as personal attention to her unique situation. And all Birthright services are free, absolutely confidential, and available to any woman regardless of age, race, creed, economic or marital status. For information or assistance, contact Birthright (763-9888).

Choir (Adult): Our pastor says: "I am very grateful to the talented people who share their gift of music and song to enhance our Masses. Music is a vital part of our liturgy, and it's a very special ministry. If you have been blessed with a good voice, please join one of the choirs. It's a wonderful way to praise the Lord."

Mary Jo Teplitz directs the Sunday 9:00 a.m. choir, Patty Shribbs directs the 11:00 a.m. choir, Roberta Guerra directs the choir at the Saturday evening Mass and alternates with the 11:00 choir. Nancy Brown directs the choir at the Sunday evening Mass. To volunteer, or for information, call Roberta (763-4773), or Nancy (763-8122).

Columbian Squire Roses: We are an organization for Catholic girls aged 10-18 that focuses on building character and developing leadership skills.  the Squire Roses plan and conduct spiritual, service, membership and social activities.  Our Business Meetings are held onthe second Sunday of each month at 6:00 pm.  If you’d like more information, please contact Melanie Hall, or 763-5939

Cursillo: Cursillo (pronounced cur-SEE-yo) is a Spanish word meaning "short course"; it might be best described as a seminar. Cursillo, in this context, means "a short course in Christianity". It begins with a weekend, starting on a Thursday evening and continuing until Sunday evening. The weekend consists of talks, meditations, and good old-fashioned Christian fellowship.  The goal of the weekend is to empower the attendee to become a Christian leader in each of his or her environments. Notice that Cursillo begins with a weekend. At the end of the weekend, the attendee begins his or her Fourth Day. This Fourth Day consists of the rest of one's life. After encountering Jesus Christ in such a special way on the Cursillo weekend, the attendee returns home with the challenge of remaining focused on Him in all facets of life. For information, contact Boyd Hazlett at 762-6290 or e-mail him at: The mens Fourth Day group meets on Saturday mornings in Room 9 of the parish center from 7-8 a.m. For information contact Jim Carr at 762-1797 or email him at:

Eucharistic Ministers: (click here for schedule) St. James has a wonderful group of people who serve as Eucharistic Ministers, Lectors and Greeters. This ministry is a great way to share your faith with other members of the parish. To join this group or to obtain additional information, please call Anne Marie Riedel (769-7807), or e-mail her at

St. James Eucharistic Ministers have a great outreach to the sick at Petaluma Valley Hospital. Communion is brought to Catholic patients. The ministers go to Mass and then directly to the hospital where they spend some time with patients talking, saying prayers, and sharing communion. At present, all the days of the week are covered. Fr. Culligan goes there on Mondays. The rest are done by parishioners. Eucharistic Ministers serving our Sunday Masses go once a month, and Eucharistic Ministers serving our Saturday and weekday Masses go once a week. Volunteers are welcome and will be placed on a waiting list.

Garden Ministry. The purpose of this ministry is to grow a year-round vegetable and cutting garden which will include a Mary Garden dedicated to the Blessed Mother. We will then harvest and supplement the Cots Kitchen and other Petaluma organizations as well as any other people in our parish community that may be in need of fresh produce. The remaining crops can be used by any of the other ministries for their functions in the parish hall if desired. Flowers will be grown to decorate the altar and will also be available to the ministries for decorating. For further information or to sign up contact: Lois Pearson 763-8467, or Stacy Arancio 769-8657,

Greeters: (click here for schedule) Join the group that welcomes you to Mass. For information or to help, call Anne Marie Riedel (769-7807).

Italian Catholic Federation: The Italian Catholic Federation is a family oriented, non-profit fraternal organization dedicated to promoting activities that build family spirit, and bring men and women of all ages together. By joining a local branch, ICF members share their culture, heritage and religious beliefs. Together we accomplish more than one can alone. We are proud of our assistance to parishes, pastors and local communities. The ICF is an example of the laity's participation in the apostolic mission of the Catholic Church. The ICF offers prayers and monetary donations for the continuation of vocations and contributes to the education of young men training for the priesthood. Our motto: "The ICF Working for the Lord." We award scholarships to Catholic elementary and high school students and grants to assist the developmentally disabled. Our Mario Cugia Scholarship promotes Italian studies. We are a major supporter of the Cooley's Anemia research and treatment program at Oakland Children's Hospital, and we sponsor an Organ Donor Awareness program. We welcome and extend our hearts to you. Enjoy with us Italian cuisine, pedro and bocce tournaments, potlucks, travel excursions, and other events which allow us to worship and socialize together as well as raise funds to support a range of worthwhile programs. We look forward to seeing you at our next ICF activity or meeting. Branch meetings are held every 2nd Monday of the month at St. James Church. For more information call Spence at 763-9082, or visit the national ICF Web site or the local web site

Knights of Columbus: Knights of Columbus are Catholic gentlemen committed to the exemplification of charity, unity, fraternity, patriotism, and defense of the priesthood. The Order is consecrated to the Blessed Virgin Mary. The Order is unequivocal in its loyalty to the Pope, the Vicar of Christ on earth. It is firmly committed to the protection of human life, from conception to natural death, and to the preservation and defense of the family. It was on these bedrock principles that the Order was founded over a century ago and remains true to them today. For information call Ed Kilgore, Grand Knight, (763-8576), or go to the local Knights of Columbus chapter web  page,, or the main Knights of Columbus Web site,

Lectors: (click here for schedule). If you would like to share your faith with the parish by being a lector at Mass, please call Anne Marie Riedel (769-7807).

Marriage Preparation Classes: Help your marriage get off to a good start. Join a Marriage Preparation class, which are held throughout the year. Couples must discuss marriage plans with a priest at least 6 months prior to the intended wedding date, the earlier, the better. Please call the rectory, 762-4256.

Ministry to the Sick and Elderly: This ministry helps the sick and the elderly, who often have difficulty in attending Mass and have other challenges in their daily lives. For information or to help, call the rectory, 762-4256

Outreach Committee. The St. James Outreach Ministry was formed to help the people of our town deal with the difficult economic problems that have befallen them in recent years. It is also dedicated to help St. James parishioners live their Christian faith through acts of charity.

Prayer Group (Chain): The chain began in 1995. It was started so that people in the church community would have a way to pray for one another in times of need. It is a real comfort to know that people are praying for you when things are difficult. We believe that prayer really helps, and that some members of the church are called to the ministry of intercessory prayer. Being in the prayer chain reminds us to pray and keeps us in touch with the needs of our fellow parishioners. There are different ways of incorporating intercessions into your daily prayer. For example, some of us bring the petitions to daily Mass or include them with the Divine Office. Others remember prayer requests during morning and evening prayers, or when commuting to and from work or school. We can always use more members. People who need prayer (or who just want information about the Prayer Chain) can call or contact:  Peggy (763-3332)

[For information on one of Catholicism's special prayers, the Rosary, visit]

St. James Prayer Quilt Ministry (Prayers and Quilts). St. James has joined Prayers and Squares, which is an interfaith outreach ministry that combines the gift of prayer with the gift of a hand-tied quilt. The purpose of this ministry is not to make and distribute quilts, but to promote prayer through the use of quilts. Our motto is "It's not about the quilts it's all about the Prayers." We are Chapter 868. If you wish any information or would like to join please call Marilyn Kristovich 763-7904 or Nancy Dade 763-8485.

St. James Family Faith Formation. The parish has a dynamic religious education program for adults, children and young adults (click for further information).

Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults: This ministry prepares non-Catholics and non-confirmed Catholics for full communion with the church. It is also a program in which non-Catholics can learn about the Catholic faith, whether they wish to become Catholics or merely learn about Catholicism. For information call the Rectory (762-4256).

Rite of Christian Initiation of Children: This ministry prepares grade school-age children for First Holy Communion and Confirmation. For information, call the Religious Education office (762-9063) or go to our Religious Education page.

St. James Women's Group: An organization for women of the parish, their friends and neighbors. Our aim is to be a catalyst for women to forge new friendships and come together in common purpose. That purpose can be as simple as attending the general meetings where we enjoy guest speakers on a wide variety of topics, followed by refreshments and conversation time. There are also special activities to take part in, such as Walking Groups, Book Clubs, Bridge and other games, and a Luncheon Group. Tours to local places of interest are scheduled also during the year. Special charitable projects and service to the parish are also part of our organization's purpose. Many of our members are participants in other parish ministries. The Women's Group meets on the first Monday of each month (exceptions are noted in Sunday Bulletin), September thru June. Meetings and special events are held in either Room 9 of the Parish Center or in the Church Hall. The Sunday Bulletin posts dates, times and place, or check the Events page. For more information call Louise Fernwood, 769-1861.

Saint Vincent de Paul Society: The Saint Vincent DePaul Society helps 20 to 25 families each month calling the rectory in need of help with food. They do this through your quarterly collections at Mass. Although the economy is improving for some, others are left behind. Some families continue to struggle to put food on their table and have a roof over their heads. We have helped with food vouchers, furniture, occasionally a motel stay, gas, and even a microwave and bicycle. We share with them information of other resources available here in Petaluma, as well.

We make home visits in pairs to those that call the rectory for help. We are there to listen, lend advice, pray with them, and offer a voucher for them to use as cash at Petaluma Grocery Outlet or Safeway. They are always most appreciative. If you or you know of someone in our parish that is suddenly in need, please have them phone the rectory for assistance.

If you are retired, we would love to have you join our group. It only takes one 1.5 hour meeting a month and a few home visits per month. These visits are made in pairs only during the day on week days.

You can also volunteer to help at the Saint Vincent DePaul Thrift Store in Rohnert Park, just down the road from Costco. They are especially in need of volunteers to bring clothing and other items from the drop off area to racks in the store. Please consider giving a few hours a week to this task. You could combine this with your trip to Costco!

We now offer envelopes, located next to the church entrance door for your convenience to make a donation for those in our area calling St. James for assistance. Perhaps you have missed some of the four collections a year but would still wish to help the needy. Maybe you would like to help more frequently than the four rimes a year or make a donation to SVDP in memory of a loved one. Please consider using these envelopes for your donations. You may put your envelope in the collection basket or drop it of at the rectory.

For further information, contact Pat Louks, President of the SVDP Society here at 707-762-4245. Please keep us and those we help in your prayers.

Sunday Co-op Nursery: [see the Children's Liturgy, above]

Ushers: For information or to volunteer, call Ed Kilgore (763-8576).

Young Ladies Institute: Join a Catholic women's organization dedicated to the principles of sisterly love, unity and protection. Our charity projects support those in need in our church and our community, and help seminarians. We invite you to learn more about YLI and join us as we Pray and Play together. For information call Alba (762-6932).

Youth Ministry: Please see the information on our Religious Education page. For additional information, contact Nancy (763-8122).