A History of St. Francis Xavier Parish
Our Mission: We, the Catholic faith community of St. Francis Xavier, inspired by the Holy Spirit, commit ourselves to an ever-deepening personal relationship with Jesus Christ that expresses itself in prayer, worship and mission. We are guided by Ignatian principles in living a faith that does justice through our baptismal call to be Christ for others.
On the feast of St. Francis Xavier, December 3, 2003
Under Pastor Russell Roide S.J., the parish officially celebrated its 75th Anniversary of service to the heart of the Phoenix community. An anniversary cookbook, and a first-ever parish photo directory were put together to commemorate the event. Many new ministries are in place and continued growth in the parish’s service to the community remains the focus in our parish. We are well on our way to accomplishing Frank C. Brophy's vision from 1957.
Current Church completed in 1959.
Frank C. Brophy's vision as he wrote to the parish during the 1957 church building campaign: “It is now pretty obvious that our parish seems destined to become one of the most important Catholic Centers in Arizona. One day, when we have a beautiful new church, the finest schools for boys and girls in the Southwest, and a Catholic Information Center in the very heart of the capital of a great state, then those Catholics whose generosity and sacrifice have made all this possible, will have reason to thank God that He gave them the opportunity to do so much at such an opportune and critical moment in our history.”
In early 1928, Ellen A. Brophy, the widow of William Henry Brophy, called upon the Jesuits of the California Province to build a college. Jesuits had not been in the state since the missionary era. In order to complete the task Mrs. Brophy donated 25 acres of land and provided funds to build a college. The land Mrs. Brophy originally identified for the project was near 12th Street and Thomas. However, her son Frank convinced her that family property on Central Avenue was a better location.