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On June 9, Father John Kavcak, MSC, celebrated his 50th anniversary of priesthood at St. Theresa Parish in Palm Springs, where he currently serves as pastor. The celebration included a Mass followed by a reception in the parish hall. The theme for the evening was, “serving God and his people for 50 years.”
“I am pleased to say I am not the same priest I was 50 years ago,” Fr. Kavcak said. “I have been formed by many different people and experiences.”
At the Mass, parishioners and priest of his relgious community, the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart, thanked God for Fr. Kavcak and for his 50 years of priestly service. At the reception, Fr. Kavcak and guests took photos in front of a grand balloon garland with a prominent “50” light-up sign in his honor. It was a night of enjoying various food, cake, grand “50” decorations and community. The parish even created a large-framed photo of Fr. Kavcak so guests could sign their names and write him messages.
In a reflection, Fr. Kavcak said that he has been formed by being a parish priest, working with parochial schools, working in a foreign country, hospital ministry, prison ministry and various cultures.
“Working with wonderful ethnic and faith filled communities like the Filipino, Native American, Hispanic, Tongan and LGBTQ+ communities has presented me with ministries I never thought I would experience,” Fr. Kavcak said.
Fr. Kavcak continued in his reflection saying that he has made many mistakes over the years and asks for forgiveness. However, he hopes that he has learned from his mistakes and from everyone’s patience they have shown him.
“I also thank my religious community, the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart who have been with me and picked me up many times,” Fr. Kavcak said. “I appreciate the wisdom and love of my religious community. I conclude by asking for your prayers.”

Elena Macias is the Managing Editor of the Inland Catholic BYTE.