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02 Feb

A Celebration of Life: Catherine Evelyn Gieselman

10-thanksgiving 023DEC. 28, 1915—JAN. 20, 2016

The Lord found her number: a perfect 100.  Catherine Evelyn Gieselman (nee Hoffman) was born in the arid San Luis Valley in Monte Vista, Colorado on December 28, 1915.  She died peacefully in her sleep in the company of her life-long friend, caretaker, and daughter Patricia on January 20, 2016 in San Antonio, Texas.  Catherine was born to Zita Monica Zoeller Hoffman (1886-1958) and Henry Andrew Hoffman (1879-1959) who moved from Zenda, Kansas to farm in Colorado in 1911.  Soon after her birth, they moved to Sterling, Colorado where Catherine grew up on a farm with her parents and three brothers Norbert, Clement, and Robert and her sister Esthyre.  She attended St. Anthony’s Catholic School in Sterling.  Upon graduation she trained and became a registered nurse at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Denver, practicing surgical nursing during her career.  She met and grew to love Raymond Joseph Gieselman (1909-1972) who managed retail stores for Gamble Skogmo in Sterling and was a reserve officer in the U.S. Army.  They married Denver in 1941 shortly after Ray was called into active duty for World War II.  His career in the military and subsequently with the Army and Air Force Exchange Service took them to many places throughout the world, including Texas, Alabama, New York, France, and Missouri.  Together they bore and raised four children: Robert (1943), Margaret (1944), Joseph (1948), and Patricia (1951).

Catherine had a light heart and an easy smile.  She cared deeply for her children, nurturing them in childhood and mentoring them in adulthood.  Foremost, she was accepting and hospitable to all.  She practiced her Catholic faith daily and had a deep spirituality that included a special relationship with the Blessed Virgin Mary, whom she called “her friend”.  She continuously performed works of mercy by serving as a nurse for clinics for the poor, visiting nursing homes, and sewing gifts to financially support the school at St. Paul’s Church. At the age of 60, she began painting and became a very good artist, a latent talent she claimed she never knew she had.  She was a model for both how to live and how to die.

Catherine is preceded in death by her husband Raymond Joseph Gieselman and daughter-in-law Kathleen Gieselman. She is survived by her son Robert Gieselman and wife Mary, her daughter Margaret Mueller and husband Pat, her son Joseph Gieselman, and her daughter Patricia Doucette and husband Rick, and her ten grandchildren Julie, Janet, Karen, Joseph, Mark, Eric, Felice, Daniel, Anna, and Lydia, and twelve great grandchildren Leo, Sophia, Roland, Patrick, Josie, Veronica, Madison, Matthew, Catherine, Coleman, Claire, and Evelyn.


Fr. Jim Barlow will celebrate a memorial Mass for Catherine at St. Francis of Assisi   Catholic Church, 4201 De Zavala Rd., San Antonio, Texas 78249, at 11:00 AM on Saturday, February 20, 2016.  Catherine will be buried next to her husband at Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery, 1520 Harry Wurzbach Road San Antonio, Texas at 10:00 AM on Monday, February 22, 2016. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Eternal Word Television Network (5817 Old Leads Road, Irondale, Alabama 35210) or Food for the Poor (6401 Lyons Road, Coconut Creek, Florida 33073).



17 Dec

To Celebrate a Life of Love: Emily Lumumba

Emily_and her son

With great sadness we announce the passing of parishioner Emily Lumumba. The funeral Mass will be on Monday, December 21, 2015 at 10 am here at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church. A formal obituary will soon follow this announcement.

The family has started a “Go Fund Me” account to help the family with expenses. Click here if you would like to donate.

Photo: Emily with her son Wycliff in June 2015.

30 Nov

To Celebrate a Life of Love: Ana Maria Gonzalez Lecea

Lecea_Ana MariaA Virtuous Woman

Proverbs 31:10-31

It has been said that Proverbs 31: 0-31 is the description of a combination of women, however that is not true.  Proverbs 31 describes my Mother in every area.

She model each of the virtues listed and she did it to the very end.  She taught us to be loving, generous with our time and resources, industrious, motivated, and disciplined. She showed us how to live a long and productive life and how to die with dignity.

V.10       Who can find a virtuous wife?

Argelio Lecea, a very good and loving man found and married a Virtuous Wife in Ana Maria Gonzalez.

She was Born in Nuevo Laredo, Mex. on February 25, 1918 and married Argelio Lecea in 1941.

She was a virtuous and supportive wife in every sense of the word.  They had six children all living:

  • Argelio Jose Lecea
  • Ana Maria Lecea
  • Jorge Alejandro Lecea
  • Oscar Alfonso Lecea
  • Gregorio Eduardo Lecea
  • Virgilio Agusto Lecea
  • 15 grandchildren
  • 19 great grand children

Although her education was limited to elementary school, her intelligence, drive to excel and creativity were not limited as evidenced by her life.

She was industrious:

  • Mom would buy fabric and made winter and summer clothes from boy shirts and dresses and suits for her loved children and herself.
  • All summer long she would go to farmer markets and buy bushels of Tomatoes, cucumbers, peaches, apples, grapes, carrots, peas and many others to can so that her family would have food all winter.
  • She would work from dawn to dusk and beyond to ensure that her family lacked for nothing or to finish a projects.

Ms. Lecea had many careers:

  • Beautician and salon owner at the age of 14 years
  • Telephone Operator at 17 years
  • Excellent Wife and Mother 1941 – 2015
  • Gourmet cook – canning and preserving vegetables and fruits some times over 140 jars of all types of vegetables and fruits for her family. Feeding her family with one chicken and having left overs.
  • Great candy, flour tortilla maker
  • Great seamstress– able to make men’s shirts as well as ball gowns
  • Translator for the International Institute of Cultures in Michigan
  • Recording books for the Blind
  • Real Estate Agent (Prov.31 v. 16 She considers a field and buys it; from her profits she plants a vineyard) She bought houses and sold them at a great profits. Her vineyard were her children, their education and her beloved Argelio’s and her old age.
  • Social Worker – who developed a unique methodology to address anger in children under 12 years of age. Nixon recognized her work.
  • Secretary and Treasurer of Professional Performance Development Group for 31 years
  • Publisher and Editor and Chief of Professional Performance’s News Letter for 10 years, with the circulation of 700 every month.

At age 92 she retired to dedicate her time to her creative talents:

  • Became an accomplished water colorist,
  • Maker of tapestries, quilts and Holiday decorations,
  • Crocheting more than 100 bed spreads, Afghans, shawls, scarfs, baby blankets and hats, which she gave away. During the winter of 2014 she crocheted and gave away 45 hats and 18 baby blankets.
  • Poet with a gift of creating a window into the human soul with words.

Now she is receiving her prize the Crown she earned in this life.  She practiced the art of gratitude and love with great diligence.


The viewing is at 4:00 pm on November 30, 2015 at Mission Park Funeral Chapels North with the rosary following at 7:00 pm. Mass is at 12 pm, Tuesday December 1, 2015 at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church and burial services at San Fernando Cemetery No. 2. All are welcome to celebrate Ana Maria’s life. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to Hope for the Future: https://www.archsa.org/


27 Oct

To Celebrate a Life of Love: G.E. ‘Buddy’ Mullan

Photo GEMWith profound sadness, we announce the passing of one of our parish founders and well-known faces at St. Francis of Assisi, Mr. G.E. ‘Buddy’ Mullan. A vigil will be held at St. Francis of Assisi on Friday, October 30 at 7:30 pm. Funeral Mass will be celebrated at St. Francis of Assisi on Saturday, October 31 at 9:30 am.

Many know that Buddy Mullan was an internationally renowned artist who designed the official parish logo, the stained glass windows in the sanctuary, many art pieces around the grounds, and much more. As a founder of the parish, Buddy initiated our RCIA process and started our Liturgical Environment team. When our church was built, Buddy was on the design committee and contributed to the present architectural design of the sanctuary and liturgical furnishings. He was an encyclopedia of Church history and loved teaching about the lives of the saints. He and his wife Celina led pilgrimages of art and faith around the world, including Ireland, Spain, Jerusalem, and Turkey. Click here to read his bio as an artist and check out some of his work.

In leiu of flowers, you may make contributions to the G.E. Mullan Liturgy & Art Fund at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church or to the Congregation of Benedictine Sisters in Boerne, Texas.

13 Oct

To Celebrate a Life of Love: Michele J. Palacios

michelleOctober 1, 1970–October 11, 2015

Michele J. Palacios passed away in her home, surrounded by her immediate family who loved her deeply on the 11th of October 2015 after a courageous 8 year battle with metastatic breast cancer. Michele was born on October 1, 1970, grew up in Kansas and moved to San Antonio in 2004.

Michele previously worked at Wells Fargo Bank and left the bank to focus on her treatments and to spend time with her husband, Richard L. Palacios. Over the last couple of years, Michele and Rich became very active in the non-profit organization; Little Pink Houses of Hope where she and her husband volunteered to help other woman and their spouses dealing with cancer.

Michele was also an excellent chef and enjoyed cooking for her family. She also enjoyed painting and created many beautiful paintings that she gave to her family. She also had a special love towards animals.

Michele was also an excellent chef and enjoyed cooking for her family. She also enjoyed painting and created many beautiful paintings that she gave to her family. She also had a special love towards animals.

She always had a smile on her face and continuously remained optimistic, courageous and continued to show compassion to others no matter what she herself was going through. Michele was passionate about her faith in God and recently converted to Catholicism.

Michele is survived by her husband of three years, Richard Palacios and her faithful canine companion; Max, her parents Michael & Vicki Reed and Peggy and Greg Bartholomew; her daughter Francine Brown; her two brothers Logan and Landon Bartholomew; sisters Staci Pectol and Shelli Patterson; Grandmother Margaret Jean Bergner. Friends and family will be received at 6:30 p.m.


OCTOBER 15, 2015
7:00 P.M.

OCTOBER 16, 2015
10:00 A.M.

Interment will follow in Hill Country Memorial Gardens. Family suggest memorials to Little Pink Houses of Hope, 2375 Corporation Parkway, Burlington, NC 27215.

27 Oct

To Celebrate a Life of Love: Jorge Escobedo

Escobedo_JorgeJorge Humberto Escobedo died on Saturday, October 17, 2015. Though he could be a man of few words, anyone that knew him knew instinctively they were in the presence of someone who was truly good. He was a dignified, honest and gentle man, always objective and positive, with never an unkind word about anyone.

Jorge also had a zest for life. He was a world adventurer, cosmology connoisseur, dapper dresser and sometimes illicit studier of Trivia Pursuit cards. He spent his life feeding his mind, and he could pull off dress socks and dress shoes with shorts unlike any other. His sense of humor was sharp, and his smile was infectious. Jorge loved photography and filming, and as a result, documented so much of his family experiences through the years, leaving a legacy of family bonds. Most amazing though, was that he had the rare ability to be fully himself. He had neither pretense nor shame in anything he did or took on. That’s something we can all aspire to.

Jorge came from a large and loving family. The eldest of 10, he was like a second father to many of his younger siblings. He held all of them close for the length of his full life. Jorge was cherished by his parents, grandparents, uncles and cousins. As a little child, he would fascinate relatives with his conversation and knowledge. Jorge was a loyal son, brother, husband, father and friend. He began his own family when he was just 22. He first met his wife Frances, who survives him, when he was in 5th grade (she was in 4th) at H. K. Williams Elementary School in San Antonio. They started dating when they were seniors in high school and were finally engaged three years later, when Frances, tired of waiting, proposed. He stayed by her side for 50 years of love and traveling adventures, including 53 cruises and countless road-trips. A mostly stay-at-home dad, he had more of a hand in raising his children than most fathers. As such, and always a tinkerer, Jorge raised Ginger and Steven with a his own brand of attentive yet ‘figure it out for yourself’ style. He taught them to think practically and logically, consult a dictionary often, and most importantly, that ‘only boring people get bored.’

Jorge took great pride in being a “Knight of Columbus” and fulfilling their mission of helping others. He was grateful for the abundance he had in his own life, and always sought ways he could help better the circumstances of others.

Jorge was preceded in death by his parents, Juvencio and Oralia Escobedo and his younger sister, Irasema. He is survived by his wife, Frances, his two children, Ginger and Steven, and five grandchildren, Jordan, Lauren, Chris, Alyssa, and Samantha, as well as 5 sisters and 3 brothers plus many nephews and nieces.


A memorial for Jorge will be held on Thursday, October 29, at Porter Loring Funeral Home in downtown San Antonio on McCullough, 1101 McCullough, (corner of McCullough and I35). Family and guests can arrive between 6-7 to mingle and get settled.

The rosary will begin at 7pm, led by Dr. James Garza, who also conducted the renewal of Jorge and Frances’ vows at their 50th anniversary celebration this past May. Eva Weber, niece, will provide a violin performance and Eric Gustafson, brother-in-law and vocalist, will sing a song of remembrance.

A mass will be held the following day, Friday Oct. 30th at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church at 4201 De Zavala at 10:00am, with a reception to follow.

In lieu of flowers, please send donations to MD Anderson – Adult Sarcoma Research, in honor of Jorge Escobedo.

13 Oct

To Celebrate a Life of Love: Denise Sander Tertrais

photo denise

April 8, 1918–October 10, 2015

Denise Sander Tertrais, 97, passed away on Saturday, October 10, 2015 in Fair Oaks Ranch. A very strong and courageous woman, she was a resident of Paris, France where she and her family were part of the Resistance during World War II, having both father and brother committed to Buchenwald concentration camp. She lived in France until 1960, when she moved to the United States and became an American citizen. She enjoyed volunteer work, making good use of her many talents, and was very family-oriented. Denise was preceded in death by her husband, Hubert Tertrais. Survivors include her sister, Helen Beder, who is still in France; daughter, Catherine Bila and husband V.J.; 3 grandchildren, Vera, Christopher and his wife Angie, and Gregory Bila; 5 great-grandchildren, Denise, Monica, and Charles Chaloupka and Madeleine and Carter Bila; as well as a great-great-grandchild, Anthony Kelley.


The Rosary will be held on Thursday, October 15, 2015 at 9:30 a.m. with a Mass to follow at 10:00 a.m. at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, 4201 De Zavala. Interment will follow in Mission Burial Park North. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Cancer research at University of Texas Health and Science Center or MD Anderson.

11 Sep

Celebrating a Life of Love: Mary Kramer

2735927_web1_20150912We extend our deepest sympathy and prayers to the family of Mary Kramer who passed away yesterday morning. Mary was one of the parish’s founding members and our community will miss her greatly.

The Funeral Mass will be on Tuesday, September 15 @ 10:00 am at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church will interment following. A reception in Henke Hall will follow the burial. There will be no vigil service or rosary.

Please click here to view the Express News Obituary

Eternal rest grant unto her, Oh Lord,

and may perpetual light shine upon her.

May she rest in peace. Amen.

14 Jul

Celebrating a Life of Love: Robert Friesanhahn

Robert FriesenhahnWe offer our deepest sympathy and prayers to the family of Robert Friesanhan who has gone home to Lord.

The vigil service will be on Friday, July 17th at 7:00 pm at Sunset Northwest Funeral Home, located at 6321 Bandera Rd. San Antonio, Texas 78238.

The Mass of the Resurrection will be celebrated on Saturday, July 18th at 12:00 pm Noon at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, followed by interment at Evers Family Cemetery located at 7029 Forest Pine, San Antonio, Texas.


Robert (Bob) Hugh Friesenhahn passed away in his home on July 13, 2015 at the age of 74 after more than thirteen years of illness due to congestive heart failure. Bob was born on March 22, 1941 to Florence Braendle Friesenhahn and Clarence Friesenhahn in San Antonio, Texas. His dear sister, Sharon Friesenhahn Kempf, joined the family two years later. She and her husband, Fred Kempf, were a huge presence in his life. He was part of a strong and passionate German Catholic family whom pioneered Leon Valley, Texas. His ancestors founded the Evers family cemetery in which Bob will be laid to rest, now a Texas Historical Landmark and home to over 150 years of tradition and heritage. He grew up with ever-present Catholic values and a strong faith in God, alongside the traditions of his wonderful German family. He was raised with aunts, uncles, and cousins that became his best friends for life. He and his family dwelled in the Leon Valley area, where he attended Northside High School (later John Marshall). While in high school, Bob met the love of his life, Bobbie Wilson, whom he married in a Catholic ceremony on May 6, 1961.
The couple had three children: Robin Friesenhahn Hughes, John Friesenhahn and Susan Friesenhahn Glenny, respectively. Although he and his family moved to various cities in Texas for his automotive industry career, Bob and his family always called San Antonio their home, and returned to Leon Valley in 1968. Bob was a devoted husband and father, and adored his children and their spouses, James Hughes, Wendi Hale Friesenhahn, and Clint Glenny, whom he viewed as children of his own. He shared an incredibly special bond with and love for each of his grandchildren, Brooks Friesenhahn, Morgan Glenny, Brody Friesenhahn (Marley Gastrock Friesenhahn), Holt Glenny, Abigayle Hughes, and Jameson Hughes, as well as Christopher (Kelly Joyce Hughes) and Lauren Hughes, and his great-grandson, Cody Hughes.
Bob was known for his unique and witty sense of humor, and had the ability to make anyone laugh or smile. He loved to hunt, fish, and show hogs, and was there alongside a multitude of family members as they cast their first line and shot their first deer. He made many friends through these hobbies, and always cherished the days he was able to spend by the river or at the ranch. Bob never strayed from his devout Catholicism and emphasis on tradition and family, teaching all his children and grandchildren the significance of heritage and an unwavering familial bond. It was impossible for those he met not to love him, for he touched the hearts of all that he knew with his immeasurable kindness, devotion, wittiness, and faith. He was a husband, father, and the greatest grandfather a person could imagine, and showed an insurmountable adoration for his family that cannot be described. He fought his sickness with congestive heart failure since March of 2002, never wavering in strength, endurance, and trust in the Lord.
His family would like to thank his team of physicians: Dr. Richard Clemons, Dr. Gerald Sioco, Dr. Kiran Jayaram, Dr. Mike Kwan, Dr. Scott Ulmer, and Dr. Dan Saltzstein. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the autism charity of your choice to honor the grandson he loved so much. Visitation for the family will be held at the Sunset Northwest Funeral Home on Friday, July 17 at 6 p.m., proceeded by a rosary service at 7 p.m. A funeral mass will be held at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church on 4201 De Zavala Rd at 12 p.m. on Saturday, July 18. The pallbearers for the funeral will be Brooks Friesenhahn, Brody Friesenhahn, Holt Glenny, Cooper Urbany, Todd Middleton, Kenny Spears, Dean Davenport, Bruce Davenport, and Brian Davenport. Bob was a wonderful man and child of God, and his impactful memory and incredible heart will never be forgotten.

13 Feb

Celebrating a Life of Love: Victoria C. Casillas

Victoria Casillas January 2015 (3)_FRONT PAGEVictoria C. Casillas, 16, of Shavano Park, TX went to be with the Lord on Tuesday, February 3, 2015.

Victoria was a junior at Dixon High School in Holly Ridge, NC. She participated and performed with the Hermann Sons Dance Group, liked to volunteer at the Humane Society, a member of Forever Fit Dance Group and was the 2014 Spot Festival Jr. Queen. She was very kind, gentle, and sincere of heart; a truly creative and imaginative young lady. Having traveled all over the world shaped her respect for people and their cultures. She had a natural affinity for all God’s creatures. Victoria will be remembered as always lighting up any room with her smile.

Survivors include her father, Victor S. Casillas, III of Shavano Park, TX; her mother, Clarissa W. Miller of Sneads Ferry, NC; two siblings, Luke and Maddie; Paternal grandparents, Victor Jr. and Beatrice Casillas of Shavano Park, TX; maternal grandparents, Kenneth and Barbara Wake of Kirby, TX; and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins.

The family will receive friends from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m., Sunday, February 15, 2015 at Porter Loring Mortuary North.

The family invites you to fellowship and refreshments beginning at 11:30 a.m., Monday, February 16, 2015 at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church.

1:00 P.M.

1:30 P.M.

Interment will follow in San Fernando Cemetery II.

To my Princess, with much love from all of our hearts, may you be at peace with the angels of Heaven. Never forget DLM/AA. Love you always, Dad.

Family suggests memorial donations be made to:
San Antonio Humane Society, 4804 Fredericksburg Road, San Antonio, TX 78229;
or the SA Zoo, 3903 North St. Mary’s Street, San Antonio, TX 78212.

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