Message from Fr. Murphy

Dear Parishioners of St. Katharine Drexel Mission,

This week we hope to have all events at St. Stephen the Martyr livestreamed. Thanks to a generous and technically connected parishioner, we hope to have this new service just in time for the latest pandemic resurgence.

The governor’s instructions haven’t changed our routine at Four Hills Farm and our venue for Sunday Mass. In addition, St. Stephen’s is still open, and we have Mass and Sacraments at the normally scheduled times. There is no obligation to attend Sunday Mass or feast days. Those who do attend are those who are healthy and those not sharing living space with those suffering from Coronavirus 19. They are expected to wear a mask unless they have medical reasons not to or are not yet five years old. We can sit up to 50% capacity observing social distancing with six feet between groups or individuals. Although I can’t provide an enclosed tent for those who prefer to sit outside, I do plan to have the parish hall wired for video and sound this Sunday.

Please see St. Katharine Drexel Mission 2020 Financial Report from Fr. Murphy on the financial status of our mission.

Mary, Mother of God

Angel Tree Program 2020

In appreciation of our Lord’s birth and all of His gifts, we hope to again share His Love during this Advent and Christmas Season by supporting local families with our Angel Tree program. This year’s program has been simplified to meet county and state requirements. Instead of collecting gifts, we will be collecting store gift cards.

In previous years, our Angel Tree team has coordinated with counselors from each of the 8 schools, within our church boundaries to identify families in need of assistance. The children in these families were provided wish list forms that they filled out and returned to the counselors who then forwarded the wish lists to us. Our awesome Angel Tree team then put together all of the information, created wonderful gift cards and set up a beautiful distribution / collection table allowing you to select a wish list card(s)and return the gifts in the following two weeks to the same table. This year, we have no table but have been in touch with the area school counselors. We agreed that collecting gift cards from stores like Amazon, Walmart, and Target would be the safest and easiest way to help out some of the families in our area.

Please prayerfully consider sharing the Joy of Christmas by contributing to our 2020 SKD Angel Tree Gift Store Card collection. We are asking that each Gift card be valued at $25.00 or less. There are several ways to get your gifted cards to our Angel Tree team.

  • Sunday Mass- please place the cards in an envelope labeled “2020 Angel Tree” and drop them in the collection basket.
  • Mail or drop off cards to Saint Katharine Drexel Mission, 4100 Mill Creek Road, Haymarket, VA 20169 ATTN: Angel Tree.

We welcome any and all contributions now through Sunday, December 6th

If you have specific questions, please call 703-754-8444 and we will direct your call appropriately. We, at SKD miss you and pray that your hearts are filled with HIS JOY, LOVE and PEACE during this upcoming Advent and Christmas Season.

Thank you kindly and God Bless,

Saint Katharine Drexel Mission
and the SKD Angel Tree Program

Building Committee Update

Due to a recent relocation, David O’Flynn recently announced that he is no longer able to serve as chairperson of the St. Katharine Drexel Mission Building Committee. We wish to thank David for all of his efforts in moving our vision of forming a parish forward, and for the time and dedication that he so generously offered to our mission church throughout the years. His contracting knowledge and commitment to serving in this important capacity have moved St. Katharine Drexel Mission forward as we prepare to build our parish church in glory to God.

At this time, we wish to introduce you to the new chairperson of the St. Katharine Drexel Mission Building Committee, Tim Freeman. Below is a message from Tim to our SKDM community:

First, I would like to thank David O’Flynn for his years of dedication. Without his leadership and passion, we would not find ourselves in the position of being so close to our goals.

The generosity of the people of our parish is inspiring. Let me share the following:

  • 45% of families have pledged.
  • Our goal of raising $3M is within reach; we have received or have pledges for $2.9M.
  • We have been meeting with the Diocese of Arlington; they showed up in force at our recent committee meeting and we were highly encouraged by their support and excitement for us.
  • We will be meeting with the County next month and expect to move forward soon.

Fall of 2023 sounds like a long time, that is the date we set as a goal to move in; we hope to move that to the left if possible. In the meantime, I will commit to coming before the parish once a quarter to provide an update on our progress. Thank you for your generosity and pledges, please keep them coming. I also wish to thank Father Murphy for his steady leadership. Please keep Father Murphy and the committee in your prayers that we may bring this vision to reality.

Holiday Sweets for Family, Friends, and Business Associates

St. Katharine Drexel’s Knights of Columbus Council is running a holiday season candy sale through December 15, to benefit the Christian Refugee Relief Fund. 100% of the proceeds (25% of your candy order) will go directly to persecuted Christians and those in their care, especially in the Middle East.

All orders are shipped directly to the address you specify and delivery timeframes can also be specified. Send candy to your family, friends, and business associates!

Cash donations can be made at

Rosary Beads

Sunday Mass at 10:30 AM at Four Hills Farm

St. Katharine Drexel Mission is now celebrating Sunday Mass at 10:30 AM at Four Hills Farm located at 4610 Sudley Road in Catharpin, VA. SKD parishioners are also welcome to attend Mass at St. Stephen the Martyr Church in Middleburg, VA.

Give through Faith Direct

Support SKD through Faith Direct

St. Katharine Drexel needs your support now more than ever! Join the parishioners who are using Faith Direct for automated giving to St. Katharine Drexel Faith Direct offers a safe and secure way to donate to our parish in this time of uncertainty. There is no cost to you, and the program provides a great benefit to our parish.


Use St. Katharine code: VA 786

Thank you for your continued support of our parish family.

Christ’s Peace,
Fr. Murphy

Please remember if you are using a third party provider to make your donation that your name is noted somewhere on the check.

Pastor’s Piece – August 29

Today’s Pastor’s Piece is a letter from Bishop Burbidge regarding a day of prayer and fasting for peace in our communities on Wednesday, September 9, 2020.

Letter from Bishop Burbidge

Pastor’s Piece – August 22

Last Friday and Saturday ten people in our parish completed their Sacraments of Initiation and were confirmed in the faith. I wish to

• Christian “José Sanchez” Arellano
• Anna “Rita of Cascia” Ferraro
• Eric “Joseph of Cupertino” Montalvo
• Zackery “Sebastian” Montalvo
• Giannina “Fatima” Obando
• Madeline “Augustine” Peters
• César Uriel Cortés-Cortés
• Mayra Graciela Vera-Ramos
• Anthoni Yanel Flores-Arellano
• Candace “Bernadette” Cooper

They have all participated in our parish program over the course of the past year and endured with patience and understanding all of the irregularities
that that entailed. While all of them have pledged to support and promote the faith with the newly received gifts of the Holy Spirit, Candace has taken the extra bold step of converting to the Catholic faith and making us her new family in Christ. It is always a pleasant reminder of the great treasure
that so often we take for granted in the Catholic Church.

Next year’s faith formation is already in the works. We have been reminding parents of the need to register their children for the new year, but I am also considering the need to plan RCIA again in English and Spanish. So far, I have six adults interested in English and one in Spanish. When I say RCIA, this can be convert-class, Catholics adults who need sacraments class or adult members of the parish who just want a refresher course. Please, call the parish office to notify us of your interest or the interest of an associate, and I’ll start planning when and where. The most likely start date is after Columbus Day.

This means that I’ve got to get some vacation time in between now and then. So, you won’t see me this week. As I hope that you are aware, our parish never really “shutdown” during the pandemic, Masses were available  even if they were not scheduled. Nevertheless, it has thrown everybodies’ schedules off and it has finally caught up with us. We’re finally shutting the Masses down. This week Monday – Saturday morning we won’t have Mass. The church will be open during business hours when there is staff to manage it. With all the irregularities, I can’t find a substitute priest to cover for my family’s trip to Virginia Beach this week. As Our Lord responded to His blessed mother’s request to attend a wedding feast, so Mrs. Murphy wouldn’t be too understanding if I was a “no-show” for the family’s vacation.  You’ll be in my prayers as I take the Mass on the road.

Christ’s Peace,

Fr. Murphy

Pastor’s Piece – August 1

St. Alphonsus Liguori – August 1, 2020

Although the Easter Vigil was canceled that doesn’t mean that the Lord’s work of sharing the faith was suspended. We still had souls preparing to join the Catholic Church and adult Catholics seeking full initiation into Christ’s Church. As unique as shutting down the Easter Vigil is to Church history, so we find a unique opportunity in our faith this August.

We celebrate each year the Assumption of the Virgin Mary on August 15 with a Holy Day of Obligation. This year with Holy Day and Sunday obligations lacking, we have the opportunity to have Mass Saturday night in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Sunday as the XX Sunday of Ordinary Time. I desire to use our weekend feast day to mark the significance of welcoming at least six members of our community into full communion with Christ and his Church. So, on Friday, August 14, we will have the Sacraments of Confirmation and First Holy Communion ministered in Spanish at the 6:00 PM Mass, and on Saturday, August 15, we will repeat in English.

This is a very hope filled time to celebrate God’s blessings shining through some dark clouds. Nevertheless, if you have adopted Saturday evening Mass to experience a Sunday Liturgy, please note that this year it will be the Mass for the Assumption of the Virgin Mary. Additionally, if you attend a Saturday evening Mass assuming that the vast majority of the congregation will be wearing masks, this may not be your hoped for circumstance.

Sunday Mass at Four Hills Farm

We are pleased to share that a parish family has graciously offered their family barn as a temporary home for us to celebrate Mass!  We have been working out the details and are overwhelmingly thankful for this opportunity.  As you know, PWC intends to keep schools closed for awhile making it obvious we are without a Spiritual Home.  It is so sad that we have had no place to worship.

Thankfully, we now have a new temporary home! The joy of again seeing the families of SKD while praising our Lord, will be wonderful.  We have truly missed you!

 So, here are the important details:

Time:  9:00AM
Four Hills Farm
4610 Sudley Road
Catharpin, VA 20143

  • Please stay home , if you feel sick, have a fever, sniffles, or cough.
  • Parking – for most will be down the hill and to the left after passing through the entry gates.  For those who require assistance, drive up the hill and park near the barn entrance.  A ramp is located on the left side of the barn.
  • Wearing a mask.  Bishop Burbidge expects it.  Governor Northam wants it worn but makes allowances for health (mental or physical).  And,  Fr. Murphy will don one for the distribution of Holy Communion.
  • Hand Sanitizer is located at both entrances for your use upon arrival and departure from Mass.
  • Seating – We will do our best to keep everyone seated  6’-0” apart.  Families can be seated in close proximity.  Our Ushers will help shift chairs as needed.
  • Seating – inside will be limited.  Please consider the reduced occupancy when planning your arrival. We encourage you to pack up your lightweight spectator chairs so you can take advantage of sitting outside when necessary.
  • Restrooms are available-wash hands for at least 20 seconds.
  • Collection baskets – will be at each entry to prevent contact as baskets passed around.
  • No Air Conditioning – The barn has ceiling fans that keep the space comfortable during the morning hours.
  • Exiting the Farm – Please exit to the right, toward Manassas.  Visibility is reduced as the road curves just before the driveway.  This will also allow for a smoother departure.  You can turn around at the Alvey Store/ gas station on your left or take a right on Pageland and follow it to Rt. 29 / Gainesville.Father Jon O’Brien Knights Knights of Columbus Council are vigilant about set up and sanitizing all chairs. Indoor seating is set up as follows: single chairs, pairs of 2 and family group of 4, all properly distanced. For outdoor seating, the Knights are setting up a tent. Parishioners may bring lawn chairs and attend Mass outside near the barn. The sound system is excellent.  You may also contact Jeff Carnicelli, Grand Knight, Father Jon O’Brien Knights of Columbus with questions at (703)407-0979.