On a recent immersion trip to the U.S./Mexico border, a team of Basilica parishioners learned first hand about the realities of life in the shadows for those crossing our border seeking opportunity.  Hear about their experiences in the Arizona desert and Nogales, Mexico.  Parishioners share the stories about what they saw, who they met, and what they learned in a short presentation at 11:00 am on June 12.

Faced with fighting and uncontrolled violence, men, women and children are choosing to flee their homes in Central America only to face new risks as they attempt to cross the desert and the border.  If they make it, they face new dangers of deportation and forced family separations.  What does our faith call us to do? 


As part of our ongoing strategic planning process for ministries and programs,Basilica  parish leadership is conducting research to elicit perspectives of parishioners.  In the next few weeks, you may receive an email from Fr. Bauer asking you to complete an online survey or be asked to participate in a focus group.  Thank you in advance for your participation. Your responses will help shape future plans for our parish.

Our goal is to gather information to qualify and quantify engagement in our parish.  We will look inward with the help of our current parishioners, and also reach out to potential parishioners.  We want to better understand what the needs and barriers to engagement are with these groups. 

Timeline for this research begins in June continues through the summer.  The Basilica last conducted a parish survey in 2010, followed by a strategic planning initiative in 2013.  Questions?  Contact Terri Ashmore

Aztez dancers led a Procession of Nations to open a celebration of Evening Prayer for Archbishop Hebda on May 12 at the Basilica. 

Knocking on the Basilica doors to request entry, Archbishop Hebda was greeted warmly and invited into our community by our Pastor, Rev. John M. Bauer.  The Archbishop's homily rooted us in our faith, and he encouraged us to place human beings over posessions, and have compassion for all. He challenged us to live our faith with outreach to those most in need and his remarks received enthusiastic and sustained applause.  US Senator Amy Klobuchar offered Minnesota cultural tips with humor, and shared our Minnesota traditions of action and service, along with her own story of meeting Pope Francis.  

With inspiring tradional and world music in many languages, words of welcome were also shared by delegations of school children, civic leaders, clergy of all faiths, and Catholic activitists.  Speakers from Native Americans - First Nations including representatives of the Anishinabe and Dakota, shared their welcome and wisdom in word,with drums and song.  They were joined by others from many nations worldwide in colorful ethnic dress.

Celebrations of welcome continued May 13 with the Installation Mass at the Cathedral of St. Paul. 


There are many routes available to visit The Basilica. We encourage you to plan ahead.

Details on road construction projects near The Basilica can be found here. We encourage you to plan ahead and consider alternate routes for your arrival at The Basilica.

Alternate Traffic Routes Hennepin Lyndale Construction

Take exit 230 toward 7th Street North.
Merge onto Lyndale Ave N.
Turn left onto 7th St.
Continue onto N 10th St.
Turn right onto Hennepin Ave.
The Basilica of Saint Mary will be on the right.

Traveling north on I-35W, proceed to the Downtown Exits.
Take the 11th St exit.
Merge onto E Grant St.
Continue onto S 11th St.
Turn left onto Hennepin Ave.
The Basilica of Saint Mary will be on the right.

Turn right onto W. Franklin Ave.
Turn left onto Nicollet Ave S.
Turn right onto W Grant St.
Keep left onto S Marquette Ave.
Turn left onto S 11th St.
Turn left onto Hennepin Ave.
The Basilica of Saint Mary will be on the right.

Remain on Hwy 55/Olson Memorial Pkwy until you reach N 7th St.
Turn right onto 7th St.
Continue onto N 10th St.
Turn right onto Hennepin Ave.
The Basilica of Saint Mary will be on the right.

Keep right onto the 11th St exit.
Merge onto E Grant St.
Continue onto S 11th St.
Turn left onto Hennepin Ave.
The Basilica of Saint Mary will be on the right.


Kirk Washington, Jr., a well-known Minneapolis artist, was killed in a tragic motor vehicle accident on I-94 April 4. Kirk was an integral part of the Basilica's Spirit and Soul concert, which is held annually with students from the Minneapolis Community and Technical College, where he served on the planning committee and as a performer. 

A memorial service in his honor will be held on Thursday, April 14, at 11:00am at the Harrison Neighborhood Community Gymnasium located at 503 Irving Avenue North. The public is welcome to attend the service.

Please keep Kirk and his many family and friends in your thoughts and prayers.

The Basilica held a lively interfaith event on Sunday, April 3rd: Building Bridges--Confronting Islamophobia. Parishioner Nick Hansen shares highlights of the event. 

            “It takes some courage to do this in this day and age,” said Dr. Todd Green to over a hundred people of different faiths in the lower level of the Basilica on Sunday afternoon. Dr. Green presented as part of the program, “Building Bridges: Confronting Islamophobia.”

            Green, an associate professor of religion at Luther College in Iowa, has researched and spoken on the topic of Islamophobia for many years.

            He began his talk by speaking on the main factors driving Islamophobia: political factors related to the history of imperialism, ignorance towards the Islamic faith, and the narrow scope of reporting on Muslims in the mass media.

            This phenomenon has real consequences: hate crimes towards Muslims happen at a rate five times higher today than prior to 9/11.

            Dr. Green implored those in attendance, especially those of the Christian faith, to build relationships with people of the Muslim faith and to speak out against islamophobia.

            For the second part of the program, Mohamed Ali Hassan of the Somali American Peace Council addressed the audience. He spoke about his organization’s work in Minneapolis (which is home to the largest Somali community in the U.S.). Hassan also talked about SAPC’s program, Sports 4 Peace, which aims to connect Somali youth with sports in order to help build community and promote peace.

            The audience was then invited to discuss the presentations with their tables, which were filled Catholics, other Christians, members of the Jewish faith, and Somali Muslims.

            The session ended with a question and answer session with both Dr. Green and Mr. Hassan.


To find out more about the SAPC, please visit

Dr. Green’s latest book is, “The Fear of Islam: An Introduction to Islamophobia in the West”



Archdiocesan Update

This page hosts information regarding the Archdiocesan update surrounding potential lawsuits at parishes within the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. 


PDF iconLetter from Archbishop Hebda_April 2016

Join the Pack!

More than 200 volunteers needed to help feed hungry children in North Minneapolis

Volunteers of all ages are invited to join our assembly line to pack snack packs for hungry children attending the Summer SLAM (Science, Language, Arts, and Math) program at our sister parish, the Church of the Ascension in North Minneapolis. These food packs will help bridge hunger gaps over the summer break, especially for those who rely on lunches at school throughout the year.

These one-hour volunteer shifts will also include placemat decorating, a fun activity for even the youngest volunteer. Logistics and coordination volunteers are also needed. Please register for a time slot after your preferred Mass time. This event is sponsored by The Basilica’s St. Vincent de Paul ministry and Hands on Twin Cities.


On Holy Thursday, March 24, Pope Francis formally named Archbishop Bernard A. Hebda as the new leader of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis. 

Archbishop-Designate Hebda has been serving as Apostolic Administrator of the Archdiocese since June 15, 2015. During that time, he has also been serving the Archdiocese of Newark, New Jersey, as Coadjutor Archbishop, and was scheduled to replace Archbishop John J. Myers when he is expected to retire in July.

The son of Bernard and the late Helen Clark Hebda, the Archbishop-Designate Hebda was born on September 3, 1959 in Pittsburgh, PA. He was ordained to the priesthood on July 1, 1989 in St. Paul Cathedral in Pittsburgh. His Episcopal ordination took place on December 1, 2009. 

In addition to serving the Archdioceses of Newark and Saint Paul and Minneapolis, he was Bishop of the Diocese of Gaylord, Michigan and has served at the Vatican and in parishes in his hometown of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 

Archbishop-Designate Hebda’s Installation Mass is scheduled for 2 p.m., Friday, May 13, the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima, at the Cathedral of Saint Paul. An evening prayer service will be held at The Basilica on Thursday, May 12 at 7:00pm in The Basilica.

To learn more about this exciting announcement, please visit and

For many years now at the conclusion of Lent on Good Friday, we have held a Tenebrae Service. We have also invited one of the Rabbis from Temple Israel to join us for this service. The reason for this is that in the history of our Church, Christians have been especially cruel to Jews, often blaming them for the death of Jesus. If not actively encouraging this erroneous belief, the Catholic Church often kept silent in the face of it. This attitude continued until the church Fathers of the Second Vatican Council produced a document called Nostra Aetate (in our age), which dealt with the relationship between Catholics and other religions. One of the most important statements in the document is the declaration that “the Jews” are not to be blamed for the death of Jesus. On the contrary, Christians are to respect Jews as their elders in the faith. They are one ones with whom God entered into the Abrahamic Covenant in which we share. 

Given the above, we invite a rabbi from Temple Israel to speak to us on this most sacred day in our Christian liturgical calendar so that we might emphasize that Jews and Christians both claim Abraham as our father in the faith and both of us enjoy a covenant with God. We differ greatly in our faith, but we are profoundly united in that we all worship the Creator of the Universe. 

At the Tenebrae service each year we also take up a collection. The proceeds from this collection help fund the interfaith efforts and activities of the Downtown Clergy and Congregations.