San Jose Parish Events

Table of Contents

6.1 25th Anniversary

6.2 35th Anniversary

6.3 50th Anniversary

6.4 Christmas Play/Party

6.5 Dances

6.6 Diaz y Seis

6.7 Dinners

6.8 Easter Traditions

6.9 Fall Event/Jamaica

6.10 Feast of Saint Joseph

6.11 Las Mañanitas

6.12 Mardi Gras

6.13 Miracles

6.14 Mother's/Father's Day

6.15 Party Games/Bingo

6.16 La Pastorela

6.17 Pilgrimage

6.18 Posada

6.19 Spring Event/Bazaar


25th Anniversary

1964 marked the 25th Anniversary of San José Catholic Church. In the 25 years since the church's founding, the number of registered families grew from 65 to over 600 (1) (223:07/21/63) and, by 1964, over 100 children were making their First Communion every year (Photo 063) (223:04/12/64) (223:05/03/64). The first church on W. Mary Street had a seating capacity of 120 persons. In 1956, the church moved from the original building to its second building that had a seating capacity of 530 persons (120).

The church was now firmly established and growing. The population of South Austin was growing and he men and women who built the first church were still in their prime in 1964. They could look back with pride on their accomplishment. As was their custom, the parishioners decided to celebrate their Silver Jubilee with a fiesta.

The first steps were taken by the Socios who at their regular monthly meeting on August 4, 1963, set up a committee for the 25th Anniversary of the parish (223:08/04/63).

Planning for the Silver Jubilee began in October 1963. The pastor called a general meeting on October 27 in the Parish Hall and urged every member of San José Church to attend. Church organizations had already appointed committees to begin planning for the celebration (223:10/27/63).

The parishioners choose to mark the anniversary on May 31, 1964. This suggests that the church was founded in the spring of 1939. Normally, the first entries in the baptismal record mark the beginning of a new parish (223:11/12/61). The first entry in the baptismal register of San José was dated August 3, 1939 (211). The land for the church was not purchased until January 1940 (67) and the building itself was not finished until June 1941 (12). May 1939 may have been when Fr. Mendez began his work with the Mexican Mission and this seemed a suitable date for the church's founding. However, an entry in the margins of the parish Marriage Register Vol. 1 states that the parish began August 1939.

The 25th Anniversary Committee was organized and running by November 1963. The President of the committee was Manuel Castillo, who, as a young man, helped build the first church. Luís Calderón and José Rocha, both long-time leaders of the men's society, formed the Program Committee. Andrea Rocha, President of the Guadalupanas, with her assistants Benigna Sosa, Antonia Herrera and Terry Peña, were given charge of the food. Fernando Sanchez and Armando Gutiérrez were charged with reception of guests. José Rocha was charged with organizing a procession of all the church organizations. Mr. and Mrs. José Maciel were in charge of decorations. Jerome Estrada organized the booths and games that formed the core of the fiesta. Charles Cardenas was in charge invited guests, of whom there were many. Frutoso Hipolito and Serafin Peña were in charge of locating enough chairs and tables for the hundreds of people expected to attend (223:11/03/63). The committee met every Monday at 7:30PM in the school building for the next six months (223:11/24/63).

By March 1964, the program had been finalized (223:03/01/64). The celebration was scheduled for Sunday, May 31, 1964 with a procession beginning at 4:30PM, followed by Mass at 5:30PM and a Jamaica or fiesta with supper and party games afterward (223:03/08/64).

Last minute changes were made to the program at the final planning meeting on May 4, 1964 and tasks were assigned. Members of the four main sodalities (for women, men, young women and young men), were expected to make certain the event ran smoothly. They celebrated Mass together at 8:00AM and then began to serve the food at 11:00AM. The Anniversary Mass began at 5:00PM (60).

Final committee assignments were:

Sodas-Refugio Herrera, Jesús Jiménez, Ben Arismendez, Gonzalo Reyna, Alfredo Reyna, Julian Herrera and Alfredo Loera

Sandwiches-Ema Arisméndez, Irene Jiménez, Eloisa Hipolito

Parking- Catholic War Veterans Post 1085

Argollas/ring toss- Roberto Bargas

Casa Blanca- Roman Gutiérrez

Raspa/snow cones-Sr. y Sra. Enrique Acosta

Party Games/Bingo- Jose Rocha, Jerome Estrada, Tony Cruz, Pete Rivera, Luís Calderón, Frutoso Hipolito, Narciso Calderón, Roberto Bargas, Hernando Sanchez, Lorenzo Hernandez. These men all belonged to the Sociedad del Sagrado Corazon de Jesus.

Concesion/concession booth-Celia Guerra, Macrina Tijerina

Chairman of the Fiesta- Manuel Castillo

Programa/Program-Luís Calderón, José Rocha, Charles Cardenas, Ben Arisméndez

Recepcion/Reception- Fernando Sanchez, Ramón Samilpa, Pedro Tamayo

Procesion y Microfono/Procession- José Rocha

Fiesta- Jerome Estrada

Invitaciones/Invitationes- Ann Guerra

Sillas y Mesas/Chairs and Tables- Frutosos Hipolito, Serafin Peña, Santos Saucedo

Beginning at 11:00AM, the two largest service clubs, the Guadalupanas and the Socios, served food. The Socios served a barbecue lunch from 11:00AM to 2:00PM (12) (9). Andrea Rocha (the Presidenta of the Guadalupanas) was in charge of the evening meal/cena. She was assisted by Benigna Sosa, Antonia Herrera and Terry Peña. Kitchen helpers included Paula Sanchez, Esperanza Acosta, Beatríz Calderón, Luisa Calderón, Consuelo Reyna, Elvira Reyna, Trinidad Ramírez, Felicitas Ruiz, Guadalupe Ramos, Rufina Bargas, Susie Hernandez, Celestina Gutiérrez, Terry Peña, Constancia Alba, Natalia Reyna, Luisa Garcia, Rosa Reyna, Carmen Álvarez, Rosa Pérez, Manuel Garcia, Alejandra Salazar, Macrina Tijerina and Antonio Guardiola (223:04/26/64).

At 5:00PM, a Court of Honor, consisting of First Grade students at the San José parochial school, crowned the image of Our Lady of Fatima (223:05/24/64). The Anniversary Mass that followed was a Low Mass with the congregation praying the different parts in the normal way (223:04/19/64). Fr. Samuel Ciatto was the Celebrate at the Anniversary Mass (60). A supper for visiting priests and a barbeque for guests followed the 25th Anniversary Mass at 5:00PM (60).

Although the church was celebrating its 25th anniversary, its financial position was precarious, and like almost every event at San José Church, the Silver Jubilee celebration became an opportunity to raise money. The Sunday Collection had increased greatly from 1940 when the Sunday plate collection usually contained $1.50 to $2.00 per week. In those early days, Fr. Mendez subsidized the work out of his own pocket and with loans and gifts from Catholic churches in the North.

In 1964, the Parish had 600 registered families but Fr. Houser calculated that 250 of the 600 families were contributing to the Sunday collection. Even those families that were contributing typically gave small amounts. Of the $325 received in the Sunday Collection in a particular Mass in August 1964, $225 was in the form of $1 bills (223:08/16/64). The Sunday Collection was so small that the church's income from its weekly party games (bingo) usually amounted to one-half of the sum of all the Sunday Collections (223:07/09/61). Fr. Houser was well aware of this fact and accepted it as a fact of life. He cheerfully urged the parishioners to support the party games if they did not support the Sunday Collection (223:05/19/63). For this reason, the parish could rarely afford to miss any opportunity to raise funds.

For $1 a person could have their name printed in the Silver Jubilee Program. The Socios sold barbecue dinner from 11:00AM to 2:00PM for $1 a plate (half a chicken, rice and potato salad) (223:05/04/64). The Guadalupanas sold tamales beginning at 11:00AM. Supper was served after Mass for 40 cents for a half plate and 75 cents for a full plate and there were party games (Bingo) beginning at 8:00PM (223:05/31/64). As a fundraiser, the Silver Jubilee was a success. Total earnings from the 25th Anniversary were $891.26 plus $116 from barbeque sales for a total of $1,007.26 (223:06/28/64). At a time when the average Sunday Collection from all four Sunday Masses was $400, $1,000 was a helpful sum.

The Silver Jubilee celebration proved once again that, while the parishioners of San José were not wealthy, their fund raising method, described by Fr. Houser as, "fiestas and more fiestas", was still a powerful tool that they welded expertly to keep their church alive and growing.



35th Anniversary

1975 was America's Bi-Centennial. It also marked the 35th Anniversary of San José Parish and the 20th year since the church moved to Oak Crest Street from its first campus on W. Mary Street. As chance would have it, the Most Rev. Alfredo Mendez, C.S.C., the Bishop of Arecibo, Puerto Rico and the founder of the parish, returned to the church for a visit in December 1975 (209).

From March until December 1975, Rev. Mike Mikan, C.S.C., was the pastor of San José. From March until August, he was the only priest at San José. He was later joined by Rev. Miguel Simone, MM in August (223:10/08/75) (223:24/08/75) and then, in December, by Rev. Larry Bauer, C.S.C. (223:14/12/75). In December, Father Bauer was appointed the administrator (223:14/12/75). It was during this transition that Bishop Mendez came to visit.

Fr. Mikan organized a parish celebration to welcome Bishop Mendez back to the parish. Mikan invited two priests, Rev. Thomas Culhane, C.S.C. and Rev. Elmer Rupp, C.S.C. to a Mass on December 20 at San José (209). Both of these men had worked with Bishop Mendez in 1939 and 1940 when the Mexican Mission, of which San José was the mother church, was being organized. At the time of the celebration, Fr. Rupp served as the pastor of both San Francisco and Santa Cruz Churches. He lived at San Francisco church (10). Father Culhane was well known to all the old-timers at San José. He had served as Bishop Mendez' right-hand man when the parish was founded in 1940 and later served for one year under Fr. Houser. Fr. Culhane was assigned to St. Mary's in Austin (223:22/06/75). He passed away in 1977.

The program of the Mass listed the six largest organizations in the parish with a brief history of each. The oldest organizations featured in the program were the Sociedad Del Sagrado Corazón de Jesús and the Sociedad Guadalupana. These two organizations dated from 1939 and 1941 and many of their members were known to Bishop Mendez. The Catholic Youth Organization formed in 1950, the Continuing Christian Development (CCD) formed in 1972 and the Breakfast Couples, formed in 1975, were the other groups featured in the program. The altar boys, who had adopted the name of Knights of the Sanctuary in 1972, were the final group featured in the program (209).

The program listed the five Holy Cross priests who had served as pastors of San José Parish until that time. The men were Most Rev. Alfredo Mendez, Rev. Joe Houser, Rev. John Haley, Rev. Michael Mikan and Rev. Lawrence Bauer (209). 


50th Anniversary

On November 13, 1988 a committee met to begin planning for the 50th Anniversary celebration of the parish. Ana Maria Saldana was the chairperson (242). The committee planned 50 Days of Celebration that would begin with a 50th Anniversary Mass on August 27 and last until October 15 (242). The celebration would include the annual Jamaica on Saturday, October 7.

The congregation moved into its third church in April, 1988 (223: 20/03/1988). At the time, the parish had 2,850 registered parishioners with over 850 parishioners involved in ministry (242). Rev. Underwood and the Assistant Pastor, Rev. Francis Grogan C.S.C. (223:28/08/1988) was overwhelmed with administering the church and preoccupied with paying for the new building (223:23/10/1988) (223:15/05/1988). They had neither the time nor the money to devote to the project and so left the committee to plan and manage the anniversary celebration on their own.

The committee proposed to create a booklet that would be distributed free of charge as part of the 50th Anniversary Mass on August 27, 1989. The committee envisioned a 200-page book with a printing run of 1,000 copies that they estimated would cost $3,000. The booklet would include Fr. Houser's recollections as well as photos and oral histories. $150 was budgeted for photos of former pastors and picture frames, perhaps to put on display during the Jamaica (242).

On February 19, 1989, the planning committee met and on February 24, 1989, a 50th Anniversary Committee was formed with Ruby Roa and Joe Maldonado as co-chairmen and Rev. Leonard Paul, C.S.C., as the adviser (242). Between February and August, the committee met at least five times (242). Joe Maldonado passed on to Ana Maria Saldana several photo albums that he found in the school. She and Manuel Castillo were preparing a list of early parishioners with the help of Pete Castillo (242). The committee asked parishioners for photos but found that only a few had photographs that were useful (193). The task of preparing the book proved to be more difficult than first thought and at the August 7 meeting of the committee, the publication date was pushed back to October 7, the day of the annual Jamaica (242).

The 50th Anniversary Committee included Joe Maldonado, Ana Maria Saldana, Moses Saldana, Ruby Roa, Mary Molina, Aggie Castro, Josie Villalobos, Mike Mikan, Frances Treviño, Manuel Navarro, Mr. and Mrs. Max Cavazos and Christie Zarria (Secretary). Sub-committees were: Invitations, Josie Samilpa; Youth, Katherine Reina (of CCD); Quilt; Booklet, Ana Maria Saldana; Pot Luck Supper, Guadalupanas (Becky Reyna and Maria Galvan); Publicity (Mary Molina); Rosary, Dolores Martinez; Adult Dances, Ray Cortez and a Saints Booth, Maria de la Cruz (242).

On July 2, the 50th Anniversary Commemorative tee-shirts went on sale. The price was $6 for small, $7.25 for adult and $8.50 for an extra-large tee-shirt. The shirts were sold at a table near the entrance to the church (223:25/06/1989). The sale of shirts continued until July 23 (223:23/07/1989).

The booklet subcommittee met in July 26 to work on the booklet with Anna, Isabel, Alice, Stella, Maria and Manuel Castillo in attendance (242). Ana Maria Saldana had gathered pictures and oral histories (242). The invitations subcommittee met on July 31 with Joe Maldonado, Alice, Manuel Navarro, Maria Galvan, Maria L. and Stella present. Invitations were prepared for 194 priests, 41 Brothers and 136 Sisters. Each of those invited were expected to reply. Because of the large number of visitors expected, there was limited seating for the parishioners. There had been plans for a dinner but the dinner was cancelled when the committee realized that there were not enough chairs to sit all those invited. Cake and punch were substituted for the dinner and the Guadalupanas agreed to donate enough cakes to serve 1600 persons (242).

The invitations subcommittee met again on August 7 with Joe Maldonado, Alice, Manuel Castillo, Anna, Maria G., Isabel, Stella and two representatives from CCD. Invitations to the Mass were sent to 400-425 persons. Mr. Gomez was hired to print the invitations. The booklet committee expressed their hope that they booklet would be ready for the Jamaica on October 7 (242).

On August 23, parishioners were urged to join to help clean the hall and the church in preparation for the 50th Anniversary celebration (223: 20/08/1989). The 50th Anniversary Mass was on August 27, Sunday at 4:00PM with Bishop John McCarthy in attendance (223:20/08/1989). Bishop McCarthy, Fr. Joseph Houser, Fr. John Korscmar, Fr. Len Collins and other priests celebrated the Mass. Deacon Jacobs was the master of ceremonies. The Guadalupanas, Socios and 4th Degree Knights of Columbus helped with the ceremony (223:03/09/1989). The 50th Anniversary Mass in the church was followed by a reception in the parish hall. The Guadalupanas served cake and punch at the reception.

The Mass began the 50 Days of Celebration that was scheduled to last until October 15 (242). Included in the celebration was a fiesta on September 16 from 2:00PM to midnight with food, games and music. Ray Cortez was in charge of the fiesta (223:02/07/1989). Also included in the celebration was the 50th Anniversary Jamaica on Saturday October 7 in the San José parking lot (223:01/10/1989). Beginning on November 26, 50th Anniversary coffee mugs were sold at the entrance to the church (223:26/11/1989).

Ultimately, the book planned by the 50th Anniversary Committee was never completed. However, work on the history project continued for a number of years after the 50th Anniversary. On November 14, 2004, Pete Castillo and Vincent Flores organized a gathering of early parishioners to continue the work. Pete Botello, Pete Castillo, Robert Flores, Vincent Flores, Andrew Loera, "Kito" Hernandez and Frank Sanchez hosted a gathering in the San José Community Center called, "a reunion of remembrance". Parishioners were urged to bring photographs and memorabilia (Photo067). In 2013, when the Pastor announced plans for the 75th Anniversary, much of this material was donated to the parish and placed in its archives. 


Christmas Party and Program

The first time San José Sunday Bulletin mentioned a Christmas Party was in 1970 (223:12/20/70). The Parish Council sponsored a Parish Christmas Party on Thursday, December 17 for the entire parish. There were two parties. The adults gathered in the Community Center for free food, drinks, music and dancing. A live band, Manny and the CO's, provided the music for the adult party. The party for children and teens was at the Youth Center and was sponsored by the Catholic Youth Organization (CYO). The two parties took place at the same time (223:12/13/70).

In December 1971, the San José School presented a Christmas program at the Community Center in the evening (223: 12/12/71) but there was no Christmas party. The next time the parish sponsored a Christmas party was in 1978. A meeting of all organizations in early December helped plan a Christmas Party for the entire parish (223:03/12/78). Again there were two parties. The adult Christmas party was on Sunday December 17 in the Community Center after the 5:00PM Mass. The party began with a potluck supper followed by a program of entertainment (223:10/12/78).The CCD Christmas Party was held on Wednesday, December 20 at 7:00PM in the Community Center and featured singing, an appearance by Santa and the smashing of pinatas (223:10/12/78).

In 1981, the parish Christmas party took place after the 7:00PM Mass on Saturday, December 19. It was a covered dish supper (223: 13/12/1981). The CCD Christmas party for children from Kinder through sixth grade was on the following Tuesday. At 7:30PM high school-age CCD students gathered at the Community Center to go caroling (223: 20/12/1981).

In the late 1980s, CCD began to sponsor a Christmas pageant. In December 1987, grade school students presented a Christmas pageant prior to Mass on Christmas Eve at the church. All parents and families were invited (223: 20/12/1987). The next year, CCD sponsored a similar pageant. The dress rehearsal for the Christmas pageant was Friday, December 23 at 8:00PM in the old church. Actors were reminded to bring their costumes to the rehearsal (223:18/12/1988).

The CCD Christmas pageant became an annual event. In 1993, auditions for the Children's Christmas Pageant were held at noon on a Sunday in November. Children grades K to 6th were invited to audition for the play (223:21/11/1993). Practice was on two Monday evenings and dress rehearsal was on December 23 (223:12/12/1993). The Christmas Pageant was presented at the 7:00PM Vigil Mass (223:19/12/1993). Earlier on the same day, Santa was in the parish hall to listen to children's requests for Christmas.



Until about the year 2000, dances were an integral part of social life at San Jose Parish. Before a parish hall became available in 1948, the parishioners danced outside. After 1948, dances were held in the parish hall (223:07/21/68). The parish hall was often too small to handle a large crowd and dances were held in public facilities owned by the City of Austin. From the late 1940s until 1969, dances were held at the City Coliseum (223:09/10/61), the Municipal Auditorium (223:04/21/68) or at the Knights of Columbus Hall (now called McBeth Annex) at 2401 Columbus Drive in what is now Zilker Park (223:04/07/68).


During 1968, two candidates for Queen and the Catholic Youth Organization (CYO) sponsored dances at the Municipal Auditorium. All three were held in connection with the church bazaar in May. A dance in June at the Montopolis Community Center was sponsored the youth group at Dolores parish and the San Jose Activities Club sponsored a dance in July in the old San Jose parish hall.

The dances featured well-known local bands. Tickets were usually priced at$2.50 to $3.50 for a couple or $2 at the door (223:04/21/68) (223:05/12/68) (223:06/16/68) (223:07/21/68).


The Catholic Youth Organization regularly scheduled dances for young people with local bands. After the San José Community Center became available in October 1969, the dances were held there, usually on Friday night for young people and Saturday nights for adults. The Socios sponsored a couple of dances in November and December and the Knights sponsored a dance on New Year's Eve (223:12/28/69).

Most dances were fundraisers. The earliest dances on record were for the benefit of the annual church bazaar that took place in May. Families vied to have their daughters named the Sweetheart of the event by raising the most money. Often, the candidates held a dance at one of the City facilities featuring a well-known local band and sold tickets to the general public to raise money for their candidacy. Entry tickets often cost $3.50 per couple or $2 at the door for these large events (223:04/21/68) (223:12/28/69).


In August 1970, Eddie Wilson opened the Armadillo World Headquarters near the corner of S. 1st Street and Barton Springs Road about two miles north of San José Church. The clientele of the Armadillo were mostly Austin hippies and its presence seemed to go unnoticed by the parishioners of San Jose. In fact, thirty-eight dances were held at the San Jose Community Center in 1971, the largest number on record.

Occasionally, St. Ignatius Parish sponsored a dance in the San José Community Center for their parishioners (223:10/11/70). The dances on Friday or Saturday night started at 8:00PM and ended at 12:00 midnight (223:10/25/70) or began at 9:00PM and ended at 1:00AM (223:11/29/70). Youth dances on Sunday nights began at 7:00PM and ended at 11:00PM (223:02/07/71). The frequent dances sponsored by the Socios were fundraisers that cost $5 per couple in advance or $6 at the door (223:01/04/70). The CYO dances for the youth usually cost $1.50 per person at the door (223:08/16/70) (223:01/25/70).

In 1970, the bands that were hired to play at the San José Community Center included the Ebonys, Los Fantasticos, Sonics Band, Frank Nunez, Soul Unlimited and the Imperials, Dave Gutierrez Band and New Breed Band. Some bands, such as The Impressions, were from out-of-town. The Impressions were from Taylor. Probably, the most famous of the bands that played at San Jose was Nash Hernandez and his Orchestra (223: 02/01/70) (223:03/29/70) (223:05/03/70) (223:06/21/70) (223:08/16/70) (223:09/13/70) (223:09/20/70) (223:09/20/70) (223:10/04/70) (223:10/11/70) (223:10/18/70) (223:10/25/70) (223:11/29/70).

Three dances were announced in December, a teen dance on Saturday, Dec. 26 from 8PM to midnight, a dance on Christmas Day with Nash Hernandez (limited to couples) and the New Year's Eve Dance at the Community Center with Frank Nunez and the Imperials that lasted from 9PM to 1AM and cost $10 per couple. There were free set-ups and party favors at the New Year's Eve Dance (223:12/20/70).


A committee of Socios planned and promoted dances at the Community Center during 1971 (223:12/27/70). The money raised from the dances was donated to the church. In 1970, total income from dances sponsored by the Socios was $2,705.42 (223:01/03/71). During this period, Youth Dances were not intended to be fundraisers and the ticket prices were subsequently about half of the price of the dances sponsored by the Socios (223:02/07/71) (223:24/10/71). During the summer of 1971, Vincent Ortiz, President of the CCD program, organized dances on Saturday nights. The income from these dances was used to finance the parish CCD program (223:06/06/71).

Sweetheart candidates sponsored a total of seven dances at the San Jose Community Center during April (for the Spring Bazaar) and in July (for the annual Jamacia) (223:04/04/71) (223:04/18/71) (223:04/25/71) (223:07/11/71). There was also a dance on Easter Sunday (223:04/11/71) and another on Father's Day in 1971 (223:06/13/71). In the fall, the Guadalupanas sponsored a teen dance at the Community Center with Soul Unlimited from 7PM to 11PM with tickets priced at $1.50 per person (223: 24/10/71). Soul Unlimited was rated as one of the top ten bands in Austin (223: 22/08/71).

In 1971, some of the teen dances were held on Sunday afternoon (223:05/30/71). Others were on Saturday night (223:06/06/71). A dance was announced at the San Jose Community Center almost every week of the year for a total of thirty-eight dances during the year.


Five dances were announced in the Sunday Bulletin during 1972. Miss Cindy Ortiz, a Sweetheart Candidate, sponsored one dance with Manny and the CO's in the spring (223: 12/03/72). The Day Care Center sponsored a dance in June at the Community Center with Nash Hernandez with tickets priced at $6 at the door (223: 04/06/72). The other dances were adult dances with Rudy Ray and the Chicanos (223:11/06/72) and the Tim Torres Band (223:12/11/72). Manny and the COs returned to play at the New Year's Eve Dance. The New Year's Eve dance was by reservation only (223:31/12/72).


The Catholic War Veterans and the Socos both sponsored a dance in the spring. The dance sponsored by the Veterans was at their hall at 4913 S. Congress with Manuel Castillo and Alegres Del Sur. Tickets were $1 per person (223:25/03/73). The Socios dance was a fundraiser for the church and cost $3 per person (223:22/04/73).

Between early November and the end of 1973, five dances were held at the San José Community Center. The Catholic War Veterans sponsored a Thanksgiving Dance on November 10 (249:04/11/73), CCD sponsored a dance on November 22 (249:18/11/73) and another group sponsored a benefit dance for a sick parishioner. There were dances on December 15 and December 22. The final dance of the year a New Year's Eve dance on December 31 (costing $10 per couple) (249:09/12/73). The sponsors of the dance on December 22 hired two bands (Dave Linzey and the Music Makers as well as Los Aguilillas) and sold 10 cent beer between 7:00PM and 9:00PM (249: 02/12/73).


CCD sponsored three dances for adults in 1974. The dances were fundraisers for the CCD program (249: 02/06/74) (249: 14/07/74). Mothers of children who attended Becker Elementary Schools also held a dance at San José to benefit programs at Becker school (249: 26/05/74). Candidates for the Bazaar Queen sponsored two dances for teenagers, one of which was labeled a Senior Citizen Benefit Dance (249:28/04/74). In addition, dances were held on November 28, December 21, December 28 and on New Year's Eve. Altogether there were ten dances announced in the Sunday Bulletin.

The bands hired by play included Summerhill (249:28/04/74), "El Conjuncto Los Alegres del Sur" (249:28/04/74), Agapito Zuniga Band from Corpus Christi (twice),

El Duerto Carta Blanca from San Antonio (250:03/11/74) and Rueben Sanchez and Orchestra (250:10/11/74).

Three dances were held in the last two weeks of December. Conjuncto Los Sandovales played at a Christmas dance on December 21 (free beer was served from 8:00PM to 9:00PM), Carta Blanca Band played at a dance on Saturday, December 28 and Tim Torres and his Orchestra played from 8:00PM to midnight on December 31 (250:08/12/74). The New Year's Eve Dance served free beer, free setups and free party favors for $15 per couple.


During 1975 and 1976, the Men's Club, the Socios (223:30/03/75), the Catholic War Veterans (223:13/04/75) and the Catholic Youth Organization (223:18/04/76) sponsored dances. A dance was scheduled approximately once every six weeks. There were fewer dances for young people and most dances were fundraisers with tickets costing $3 or more per person. The 1976 New Year's Eve Dance was by reservation only and cost $20 per couple (223:14/12/75).


The Men's Club sponsored at least four dances in 1975, the Socios sponsored at least three dances and other organizations sponsored at least four others. The first dance of the year was a teen dance in the Community Center from 8:00PM to 12:00 midnight for $1.50 per person (223:05/01/75). Two dances were held at San José Community Center on May 8 and May 15 with Los Pavos Reales and El Flaco Jimenez at popular prices (223:02/03/75). The benefit was probably for the renovation of the church (223:10/03/75).

The Men's Club sponsored a dance on April 5. The following weekend, the Socios sponsored a dance. Ticket prices at both dances were the same ($4 per couple, $5 at the door) and the schedule was the same (9PM-1AM). The band was Nash Hernandez and the Dynamics (223:30/03/75). Other dances in the spring of 1975 featured music by Tim Torres and his Orchestra (223:13/04/75) and a Mother's Day Dance on May 10 with El Flaco Jimenez that lasted until 1:00AM. "El Flaco will play Las Mañanitas after the dance for the first 25 persons who called" (223:20/04/75).

As usually, there seemed to be no favorite band. A dance was held every month with a different band. The bands included Agapito Zuniga from Corpus Christi (223:27/07/75), Nash Hernandez (223:21/09/75), Los Tremendos Gavilanes de Juan y Salomon de Monterrey (223:05/10/75) and Conjunto Chencho Flores (223:26/10/75). The New Year's Eve Dance was by reservation only and cost $20 per couple. This included beer, set-ups, cokes and party favors. Food was sold during the dance. The music was by La Orchestra Savor and El Conjunto de Los Verinos from Austin. Tickets were sold on three consecutive days at the Community Center (223:14/12/75).


Nine dances were held in the San Jose Community Center during the first six months of 1976. The CWV Ladies Auxiliary sponsored a dance with music by El Flaco Jimenez in early January (223:11/01/76) and then two weeks later with Nash Hernandez and his orchestra (223:25/01/76). Other bands included Los Madrugadores of Reynosa, Mexico (223:08/02/76), el Conjunto Gairio from Killeen, Texas and Los Cadettes de Linares of Nuevo Leon (223:04/04/76). Tickets were $2.50 per person (223:14/03/76)

In April, the CYO sold tickets after Mass to a Disco Dance and a midnight movie, "Zulu" at the Community Center from 8:000PM to 1:00AM. Tickets were $1.50 per person (223:18/04/76).The Sunday Bulletin listed dances for May 23, May 29 and May 30 with three different bands, all in the Community Center (223:23/05/76). Jesse Duran and Los Aguilias played at a benefit dance for San José Children's Choir in June (223:30/05/76).


A dance during the annual Jamaica in October 1982, called the Fall Fiesta Dance and Beer Hall, sold tickets valued at $769. The dance and the beer hall at the Jamaica ranked fourth in sales of the 38 booths and activities. In comparison, the King and Queen candidates raised $2,734 (223:07/11/82). The ushers sponsored a dance on Nov. 13 at the Community Center to benefit the church. Music was by Santiago Jimenez y Su Conjunto. The previous night another dance raised money for several Mexican community organizations (223:07/11/82).

After Rev. Fred Underwood, C.S.C., took charge of the parish in November 1982, significant changes were made to the dance program. Fr. Underwood made the dance program into a fundraiser for the parish. Dances that were fundraisers for the parish were called parish dances. A dance committee led by José Jiménez organized the dances (223:17/07/83). Parish dances were held every month except January and March on Saturday night from 8:00PM to 1:00AM (223:07/08/83). Tickets sold for $3 in advance from the church office and $5 at the door or more (223:24/04/83). During 1983, the income from the dances was $16,386.77. "The dances and breakfasts continue to be an important means of supplementing our Sunday collections", said Fr. Underwood (223:20/11/83). The money was used to renovate the church (223:11/12/83). The dance on December 31 (New Year's Eve) was also a fundraiser for the church remodeling project (223:11/12/83).


Organizations other than the Dance Committee sponsored dances at the Community Center during 1983. In March 1983, Margaret Loera, a candidate for City Council, held a dance with the Nash Hernandez Band as a fundraiser for her campaign (223:20/03/83). In June, Maria Tera y Sensation Tropical and Grupo Poquito Mas played at a dance to benefit Mary Estrada Vasques to help pay her doctor and hospital bills. Free keg beer and snacks were available at the dance. Tickets were $5 per person (223:12/06/83).

A pre-Lent Mardi Gras Dance with a "family atmosphere" (meaning no beer) was a parish dance and a fundraiser for the church (223:13/02/83). The income from the dance was $1,480.86 (223:20/02/83). Another parish dance featured Johnny Delgollado on a Saturday in April (223:27/03/83). The net income from that dance was $1,837.66 (223:24/04/83).

The next parish dance was in the Community Center with Los Hermanos Rodriguez (Hector and Aurelio Rodriguez) (223:24/04/83). The dance netted $1,124.50 (223:15/05/83). Another parish dance in June featured El Conjunto Alegre de Frank Flores (223:29/05/83). The pastor hoped the proceeds from the dances would help offset the expenses of the church (223:15/05/83).

Dances were held every month on Saturday from 8PM to 1AM during 1983 except January and March (223:07/08/83). The income from the dances varied from $280 (223:31/07/83) to $745 each night (223:28/08/83) (223:25/09/83) (223:02/10/83). In November, a dance at San Jose raised $1,300 (223:20/11/83).

The profits from the final two dances, with Super Sonicos del Ritmo and Rudy Davila y Los Luceros Cuatro, were used to renovate the second church (223:04/12/83) (223:11/12/83) The income from the dances during 1983 was $16,386.77 (223:11/12/83).


The parish dance program continued in 1984. Fr. Underwood said, "We need more workers," and invited all parishioners to join the Dance Committee (223:08/01/84). In 1984, a parish dance was scheduled each month except during Lent (223:29/01/84) (223:26/02/84). Beer was served at the adult dances so, in June, 1984, Greg Trejo repaired a beer box to be used at the Parish Dances. The priest commented that, "Greg took a used broken down unit and rebuilt it so it runs like a new one" (223:17/06/84). A liquor store donated two cases of liquor for door prizes at the dances (223:02/09/84).

Income from parish dances for 1984 was $19,000.88 (Progress Report of San Jose Parish for the Year of 1984, Catholic Archives). Often, the income from a particular dance was dedicated to a specific purpose. For example, a youth dance raised $295 for Guatemalan Refugees (223:22/01/84). The income from two other dances helped pay for a church bus (223:17/06/84) (223:22/07/84). Another dance raised money for air conditioning in the school (223:19/08/84). Three dances in October, November and December raised money for the CCD program (223:07/10/84) (223:16/12/84) (223: 03/02/1985) and a Christmas dance raised $1,096.00 to help pay Eric Dominguez' doctor bills (223:02/12/84) (223:06/01/1985). Paul Gonzalez, his family and the youth group helped at that dance and raised $1,096 to help pay the doctor's bill (223:02/12/84) (223:06/01/1985).

The bands that played at the dances included Frank Flores y Su Conjunto, Grupo Inca, Los Cinco Reyes, Hermanos Aguirrie de Durango, Los Viajeros Del Norte, Los Hermanos Rodriguez, Los Hermanos Aguiree, Los Fabulosos Robles, Johnny Degollado, El Grupo Alma de San Marcos, Isidro Lefty Lopez, Los Supersonicos and La Onda de Tejas de Frank Sanchez (223:29/01/84) (223:19/02/84) (223:26/02/84) (223:07/10/84) (223:21/10/84).

There were at least three dances at the Community Center during December. Rudy Davila and Los Luceros Castro and Grupo Alma played at a benefit dance for the CCD program (223:18/11/84) and the final dance of the year, on Monday December 31, benefited the CCD program. Johnny Degallado provided the music (223:16/12/84). Profits from the dance were $2,117.50 (223: 03/02/1985).


In 1984 and 1985, there were 13 volunteer dance supervisors in the Dance Ministry (Progress Report of San Jose Parish for the Year 1985, Catholic Archives) (223:03/02/1985). The Dance Ministry sponsored a parish dance each month. In 1985, nineteen dances were held at the San Jose Community Center. Of the nineteen, twelve were parish dances. A parish youth group sponsored six others and the Socios sponsored two dances (223:28/07/1985) (223:01/12/1985).

The Ahuacatlán Mission group from Dolores and San José Parishes, led by Paul Gonzalez, sponsored six dances at the San Jose Community Center during 1985. The dances were fundraisers for their mission group. The first dance raised money for the Youth Bus Trip to Steubenville, Ohio (223:20/01/1985). For several years, a busload of young people from San Jose attended the event. The annual conferences in Steubenville, Ohio were precursors to what later became World Youth Day. The second youth dance was a benefit dance for the Ahuacatlán mission. The dance and other youth activities raised $1,100.00 (223: 14/04/1985). Of that, $450 was taken to the mission in Mexico, $300 was sent to Catholic Relief for Famine in Ethiopia and $350 was used to assist San Jose parishioners with large medical bills (223: 14/04/1985). Paul Gonzalez was a disc journey who called himself "the Silver Express". He provided the music for all of the dances sponsored by the youth group in 1985 (223: 22/12/1985).


The Dance Committee met twice during January 1986 and recommended changes to the dance schedule. They decided to sponsor a parish dance every two months, instead of every month. The type of music would alternate between conjunto and orchestra because the young people preferred orchestras. To keep the reputation of the dances at San Jose as family- and Christian-friendly (free of fights and trouble), the next dance would be for couples only. Only 200 tickets would be printed. There would be no radio or poster advertising to limit the number of outsiders at the dance (223: 12/01/1986).

José Jiménez served as Dance Committee Chairperson from 1982 until 1985 (223: 12/01/1986). In 1986, the chairpersons were Margarito and Andrea Rodriguez and Gilbert and Rosie Tello. Victor Balderas and Manuel Navarro were in charge of the dance schedule. Greg and Stella Trejo and Henry Saenz were in charge of the beer sales. Sylvia Polanco was in charge of the kitchen. Paul Martinez was the doorman and Jesse Ortiz handled the beer license. Raymond Castro and Jose Jimenez worked as helpers (223: 12/01/1986).

There were fifteen dances at the Community Center in 1986. Ten were sponsored by the parish Dance Committee or the Catholic War Veterans Ladies Auxiliary (223:12/01/1986). The other five were sponsored by the youth group. Paul Gonzalez and the Silver Express played for all of the youth group dances. The youth group dances raised money for the trip to Steubenville, Ohio in July or for other youth group activities. All of the parish dances were fundraisers for the San Jose Church building fund.

The first dance of the year was the 21th Anniversary Dance of the CWV Ladies Auxiliary with Vicente Sanchez y Poquito Mas. Tickets were sold by Mrs. Amparo Longoria for $15 per couple (223: 12/01/1986). A dance in February with Leonard Davila and The Street People was for couples only (married or unmarried). Tickets were $12 or $16 at the door per couple. The proceeds went to an outdoor statue of St. Joseph and the Grotto. Only 200 tickets were printed and there was no radio or poster advertising (223:12/01/1986). The profits from the dance were $2,093.00 (223:16/02/1986).

Also in February, Youth Group members from parishes of the South Austin Deanery were invited to a free dance at San Jose Center on a Saturday afternoon (223:02/02/1986). DJ Paul Gonzales provided music for the Youth Valentine Dance at the Center from 8:00PM to midnight Friday. Admission was $3 per person with proceeds to go towards the Youth Trip to Steubenville, Ohio in July (223: 02/02/1986). He also provided the music for a similar dance on Friday, July 11 (223: 06/07/1986).

During the spring and summer of 1986, the parish sponsored parish dances with Johnny Degollado y su Conjunto (223:16/03/1986), La Diferencia (223:20/04/1986), El Grupo Exo (the Exo Band) (223:20/07/1986) and Robert Ortiz and his orchestra. The dance in August was poorly attended because it was held during the Aqua Festival. The pastor said the music of Robert Ortiz and his Orchestra was great but could not compete with Aqua Fest. The event had no profit for the church (223:10/08/1986).

Paul Gonzalez provided music for Back-To-School Youth Dance in September. The dance was a fundraiser for a Youth camping weekend at Inks Lake Park (223:31/08/1968). The other five dances of the year were benefit dances for the new church. The dance in September was the raise money for the new St. Joseph Statue. The 12:30 Choir sponsored the dance (223:24/08/1986). The Dance Committee sponsored a dance in October, with "Los Commandos" de Monterrey and "Los Viajeros del Norte" (223:21/09/1986). The Cursillista's sponsored another benefit dance for the new church with music by Los Viajeros Del Norte (223:05/10/1968). The dance raised $917.35 (223:09/11/1986).

The dance in November, with a band called Salaman, was specifically designed to raise money to pay for the flooring in the new church. Tickets were $12 per couple or $16 at the door (223:19/10/1986) (223:26/10/1986). The dance raised $1,141.50 (223:16/11/1986). DJ Paul Gonzales and the Silver Express provided music for a Halloween Costume Party and Dance on Friday in the Community Center. Admission was $2 in costume and $3 without a costume (223:26/10/1986). Johnny Degollado y Su Conjunto played for the San Jose New Year's Eve Parish Dance on Wednesday, December 31. Ticket cost $20 per couple with proceeds to the church building fund (223:14/12/1986). The pastor advised, "B.Y.O.B." (223:28/12/1986). The dance raised $1,738.35 (223:11/01/1987).


In 1987, the dance schedule managed by the Dance Ministry was less robust than previous years. Only nine dances were announced in the Sunday Bulletin. Four of the nine were Youth Dances. Beginning in May, DJ Rudy Duran Jr. began providing the music for the Youth Dances (223:21/06/1987). The youth dances were fundraisers for the trip to Ohio (223:08/02/1987) (223:24/05/1987) and other youth activities. The parish dances were fundraisers that raised money for the church building fund (223:30/08/1987) (223:01/11/1987).

The Dance Committee met on January 12 in the school building (223:11/01/1987). The first parish dance was scheduled for February with La Diferencia y Niebla Blanca. Tickets were $10 per couple presale or $14 at the door (223:08/02/1987). The dance netted $1,774.90 (223:01/03/1987). Grupo Alma (from San Marcos) provided music for benefit dances in September and October (223:18/10/1987) and Salaman provided music for the November dance (223:01/11/1987).

"Cest La Vie" played for the New Year's Eve Dance at the San Jose Community Center from 8:30PM to 12:30PM with free coffee and party favors. Tickets were $10.00 per person presale and $12.00 per person at the door. The proceeds benefited the new church (223: 20/12/1987).

The Dance Committee met in early December. The greatest need was for a co-ordinator but the committee also appealed for more workers including those who help in the kitchen (223: 06/12/1987). Arthur Treviño was selected to be the new dance coordinator (223:24/01/1988).


1988 began with a Youth Dance on January 1 with music by DJ Rudy Duran Jr. (223: 27/12/1987). The first parish dance was on January 16 with Los Viajeros del Norte (223:03/01/1988). Other youth dances were scheduled for January 22 (223: 17/01/1988) and March 4 (223: 28/02/1988). DJ Rudy Duran Jr. provided the music for both dances. Each Youth Dance averaged a net profit of $1,800.00. During the spring, the youth used some of that money to purchase the Tabernacle for the new Church and a video projector and screen and VCR for the parish hall, totaling $3,183.00. After those purchases, the Youth Account had a balance of $8,500.00. Their goal was to raise $25,000 that would be used to renovate the church (223: 28/02/1988).

Jessie y Beto Duran y Los Aguilillas provided music for a parish dance in April (223: 03/04/1988). The parish Mother's Day Dance featured Gilbert Alba and Super City Band (223: 01/05/1988) and Henry Zimmeria Conjunto San Antonio (from San Antonio, Texas) played for the San Jose Parish Dance in October. Tickets for all of the parish dances were $6 per person presale and $8 at the door (223:23/10/1988). These dances were for adults and were designed to be fundraisers for the church building fund. The dance in October earned $1,111.40 for the church (223:13/11/1988).

The San Jose New Year's Eve Dance was at the parish hall from 9:00PM to 1:00AM on a Saturday night. Tickets were $10 per person at the door and $12 at the door. "Ce-La-Vi" provided the music (223:11/12/1988).

Prior to May 1988, Youth Dances were scheduled for two age groups. In May, the pastor said, "During the month of April, our Middle School and High School Youth have demonstrated that it is not necessary to have separate youth dances for each group. Therefore, beginning this Friday, May 6, our Youth Dances will be for our parish youth group members, ages 13-18 years and their invited friends. Maximum number admitted will be 400. Parents who wish to pick up their teenagers earlier than 11:30PM may do so". The Silver Express provided the music for the first dance under the new policy. The hours of the dances were 8:00PM to 11:30PM with admission of $3.00 per person (223: 01/05/1988).

The Youth Group sponsored benefit dances on May 20, June 3, June 17, July 8, September 24, October 14, October 28, November 18 and December 17 for teenagers aged 13-18 from 8:00PM to 11:30PM in the parish hall. Attendance was limited to 400 persons. Parents were urged to pick-up their children before 11:30PM. Rudy Duran, Jr. ("Delightful Sounds") (223:15/05/1988) (223:29/05/1988) (223:18/09/1988) (223:11/12/1988) or Paul Gonzales ("Silver Express") (223:12/06/1988) (223:09/10/1988) (223:23/10/1988) provided the music. Both of these young men were University students who worked for the parish part-time. They were both DJs. Only once during the year did the dance organizers hire a band. Déjà vu was hired to provide music for the teen benefit dance on November 18. The dance was restricted to Youth Group members and their invited guests, 13-18 years of age (223:13/11/1988).

All junior and high school-age students were expected to belong to the Youth Group, formally called the Catholic Youth Organization. The San Jose I.D. cards were distributed at a dance in October and all non-parish high school students were asked for their school I.D. card upon entering the Community Center. Rudy Duran, Jr. provided the music for the Jamaica Youth Dance on Saturday, September 24 (223:18/09/1988). The dance during the Jamaica raised $1,306.90 (223:02/10/1988). Rudy Duran, Jr. and Delightful Sounds also provided music for the Youth Christmas Dance December 17 at the usual place and times. Tickets were $3 per person. This was a semi-formal dance for Youth Group members and their guests (223:11/12/1988).

Other than the Dance Committee and the Youth Group, the only other parish organization to sponsor a dance in 1988 was the Cursillistas. They raised $1,144.85 for the church at a benefit dance in July (223:21/08/1988).


The first dance of 1989 was a Youth Dance on Friday night, January 20 with Rudy Duran, Jr. and Delightful Sounds. The dance was well supervised by adult chaperones and security (223:30/04/89). Parents were asked to pick-up students at 11:30PM (223:22/01/1989). The next day, Saturday, January 21, the CWV Ladies Auxiliary held their 24th Anniversary Dance in the San Jose Parish Hall (223:22/01/1989). The profits from the beer and kitchen concession were donated $600 to the church (223:05/02/89). The Youth Dance on the previous Friday made a profit of $724.51 but the money was used for the Youth Program (223:29/01/89).

The Youth Dances continued to attract large crowds. The income from the February 10 dance (with Paul Gonzalez) was $1,269.81 (223:05/02/89) (223:19/02/89). A dance on March 10 had an income of $1,419.33 (223:05/03/89). The income from youth fundraisers was not included in parish income and was used for youth activities (223:19/05/89). Other Youth Benefit Dances were on April 28 and July 16. Three hundred and forty teens attended the dance on July 16 and the income was $1,112.71 (223:30/07/1989).

DJ Abraham Galvan supplied the music for a youth dance at the parish hall on August 5 (223:30/07/1989). Three weeks later, the youth group sponsored a Battle of the DJs Teen dance and a dance contest for their age group (223: 20/08/1989). The profit from the dance was $1,055.83 (223:03/09/1989). There were two more Youth Dances in September, (223:03/09/1989) (223:17/09/1989), one more in October (223:08/10/1989) and another in November (223:12/11/1989). Abraham Galvan and Martin "Hitman", both DJs, provided the music for the dances (223:08/10/1989) (223:12/11/1989). All of these dances were well-attended and dance income ranged from $723 to over $1,000 per dance (223:22/10/1989).

The last Youth Dance of the year was the Youth Christmas Dance with DJ Paul Gonzales on Friday, December 22. Tickets were as usual $3 per person (223:17/12/1989). Income was $135 (223:31/12/1989).

The adult Dance Committee sponsored five parish dances in 1989 and the usher's sponsored another. Henry Zimmerle Conjunto San Antonio played at two dances (223:19/03/89) (223:09/04/1989) and El Grupo Ozten played at a dance for adult Jamaica volunteers where free beer and snacks were served (223:05/11/1989). The usher's dance was a Pre-Mother's Day Dance on May 13 with Salaman and Los Principes Del Norte. Tickets were $7 presale and $8 at the door (223:03/04/89). The profits from this dance were $1,018.65 (223:28/05/89).

The final dances of the year were an Adult Christmas Dance in the parish hall on Saturday, December 23, with "Johnny and the New Sensations" (223:03/12/1989) and the adult New Year's Eve Dance on Sunday, December 31. The tickets cost $20 per couple presale or $25 at the door. The price includes party favors and breakfast. Music was provided by "Alma Tejana" (223:17/12/1989). Income was $146 (223:31/12/1989).


During 1990, at least twenty-five dances were staged at the San Jose Community Center. The Youth Dance Committee (headed by Leticia Casarez and Cindy Martinez) sponsored fifteen youth dances. The Knights of Columbus sponsored by five adult dances and the ushers sponsored two. The adult Dance Committee sponsored one parish dance.

The five dances organized by the Knights of Columbus were on January 27, Valentine's Day (223:28/01/1990), Father's Day (223:03/06/1990), Halloween (223:21/10/1990) and New Year's Eve (223:23/12/1990). The dances were scheduled for Saturday night. The musicians were Johnny Degollado (twice), Frank Sanchez y La Honda de Tejas, Mario Bustos y Los Jokers. Ticket prices varied from $5 per person (223:07/01/1990) to $20 per couple (223: 23/12/1990). The dances sponsored by the Knights were fund raisers for the KOC and were usually not counted as parish income (223: 13/01/1991).

Angel Rivera and the Ushers sponsored two dances to raise money for the parish. These were adult dances with Turismo (Mike Saucedo), La Onda de Tejas (Frank Sanchez) (223:08/04/1990) and el Grupo Rasones with Will Fabila & Sol Y Tierra (223:12/08/1990). The profits from the second dance were $83 (223:26/08/1990).

The adult Dance Committee sponsored only one dance during 1990. Nash Hernandez played for a San Jose Adult Dance in the San Jose Parish Hall on September 22. The ticket price was high ($18 per couple) (223:09/09/1990) and the income from the adult dance was only $558 (223:30/09/1990).

The Youth Dance Committee sponsored one or two dances every month. Most were traditional youth dances with DJs, a ticket price of $3 per person and a closing time of 11:30PM. The income was listed under Parish Income and ranged from $1,149.35 (223:27/05/1990) to $823 (223:07/10/1990). The DJs hired were Martin "The Hit Man" (223:21/01/1990), David Turner (223:18/03/1990), Duran/Mojica (223:18/02/1990), Joe "Rod", Rudy Duran (223:22/04/1990),Turntable Records (Freddie Gonzales), "Iceman" (Isaac Saenz), Lil' Louis B. (223:12/08/1990) and Mobile Fantasy Disco (Ice Man Isaac Saenz & Little Louis) (223: 09/12/1990). The final two teen dances of the year were on Friday, December 14 and December 21. As usual, the Christmas Dance made very little profit and income was reported as $167 (223: 23/12/1990).

The Youth Dance Committee became more innovative in 1990, moving beyond the established pattern of Friday night dances with DJs. After a very poorly attended youth dance on Friday, April 22, the Youth Dance Committee considered rescheduling the dances to Sunday afternoons from 3PM-7PM (223:15/04/1990). Apparently, the idea was rejected and youth dances continued on Friday nights. A dance on May 18 sponsored by the Youth Dance Committee and SUAVE Youth Group was well-attended and had a profit of $1,149.35 (223:27/05/1990).

The dance in June was preceded by a Fashion Show from 7-8PM followed by the dance at 8-11:30PM. Clothes were provided by "The Go Round" and the models were young ladies from the parish (223:27/05/1990). Parish income from the dance was $964.35 (223:03/06/1990). The second dance in June was really two dances. The first dance of the evening was a Junior High School Dance from 4PM to 7PM followed by a High School Dance from 8PM to midnight (223:03/06/1990).

In July, the Suave Youth group sponsored a Mini Truck Show on Sunday in the parking lot in front of the Parish Hall from 3:00PM to 7:00PM followed by a dance with Martin, "The Hitman", D. J. Dominique and Brown Boy James from 8:00PM to midnight. Tickets were $10 per person (223:24/06/1990).

In September, San Jose and St. Ignatius parishes jointly sponsored a Youth Dance for the Homeless at St. Ignatius Hall on Saturday, 8:00PM to 12:30PM with DJ Martin, "The Hitman". The entry price was reduced by $1 if a person donated one can of food (223:09/09/1990). Income from the dance was $970 and income from the kitchen at the dance was $92.65. This was income for the church (223:23/09/1990).


During December 1990, Moses Saldana polled older adults to measure interest in a Mexican-American Dance Club for people over 50 years of age (223: 16/12/1990). In February 1991, he organized an Adult Dance Club that met on Wednesday at 7:30PM in the Parish Hall (223:03/02/1991). The dance club was for people 40 years of age and over (223:17/02/1991).

During 1991, the Knights of Columbus sponsored four adult dances, the parish sponsored two, the Youth Dance Committee sponsored three and the Mexican-American Dance club sponsored one dance.

The first dance sponsored by the Youth Dance Committee was in February. The best dressed couple received prizes and formal attire was required with no tennis shoes, no tee-shirts and no ball caps. A variety of groups (Fantasy Mobile Discotheque, Eric & Joseph Masters in Motion, Kash & Money, Martin & Veronica, Johnny Cantu, Sandra and S.U.A.V.E) provided the music (223: 27/01/1991). The dance was a finance success, raising $1,056.44 for the youth ministry (223:24/02/1991).

The first adult dance was sponsored by the Knights of Columbus on Saturday, February 16. This was a traditional adult dance beginning at 9:00PM and ending at 1:00AM. Tickets cost $8 per couple presale with music by Edward Coronado and Tim Torres and El Grupo Selavie (223:03/02/1991) (223:10/02/1991). The dance was a benefit for the youth ministry and raised $1,470.03 (223:24/02/1991). A similar dance on April 13 featured music by Johnny Degollado Y Su Conjunto (223:31/03/1991). Income was $521 (223:21/04/1991).

The Knights of Columbus also sponsored dances on Mother's Day (223:05/05/1991), Father's Day (223:09/06/1991) and Christmas (223:22/12/1991). The music was provided by Pavo Band from Seguin, Texas and Tim Torres y Los Exitos. Tickets were $8 in advance or $25 per couple (for the Christmas Dance).

Other dances during 1991 included a dance in July for adults aged 40 years or older (223:30/06/1991), a dance during the Jamaica (223:28/07/1991) and a parish dance at the Flamingo Ballroom to welcome home Desert Storm soldiers. The dance was sponsored by San Jose Parish and the income was used for the parish youth program (223:04/08/1991). Other Youth Dances were in April, May and December (223:15/12/1991). In 1991, the City of Austin adopted the slogan; "Live Music Capital of the World" after it was discovered that Austin had more live music venues per capita than anywhere else in the US.


The adult Dance Committee stopped sponsoring parish dances after 1991. In 1992, the Knights of Columbus sponsored two dances for adults and the Catholic War Veterans sponsored one adult dance. The Youth Dance Committee sponsored two dances and the Boy Scouts sponsored one dance for teenagers. In August, the pastor said that, "Since we are no longer going to have adult dances, we renovated the room where beer used to be sold at dances" (223:23/08/1992).

The Knights of Columbus sponsored a Pre-Mother's Day Dance on May 9 from 9:00PM to 1:00AM in the parish hall with Los Commandos de Monterrey. Tickets cost $5 and were available in the church office (223:03/05/1992). The second dance sponsored by the Knights of Columbus was a Father's Day Dance with music by Los Hermanos Cruz (223:14/06/1992). The Catholic War Veterans Post 1805 sponsored the New Year's Eve Dance. The band was Elvira Sanchez Y La Suerte. The $25 per couple price included party favors and breakfast after the dance (223:20/12/1992).

The three youth dances in June, July and October were sponsored by the Explorers of San Jose (223:14/06/1992 or the parish. The DJs were Turntable Records and Gabe Mojica's Latin Express (223:12/07/1992) (223:19/07/1992). The Halloween Dance included a "Costume Contest- no devils or witches allowed" (223:25/10/1992).


Only five dances were announced in the San Jose Sunday Bulletin during 1993. Apparently both the adult and youth Dance Committees had disbanded. Adult dances were sponsored by the Knights of Columbus, the Ushers or the Catholic War Veterans.

The Catholic War Veterans or the CWV Ladies Auxiliary sponsored three dances, two were at the San José Community Center and one was at the CWV hall at 4913 South Congress Avenue. The first was on April 17, the second on August 21 and the last was at the end of August. Alfonso Ramos & Tim Torres, Mario Bustos y Los Jokers and a conjunto band provided the music (223:04/04/1993) (223:11/04/1993) (223:15/08/1993) (223:22/08/1993).

The Knights of Columbus sponsored a Mother's Day Dance with music by Sentimiento (223:25/04/1993) and a Father's Day Dance with music by Los Jokers and Turismo (223:06/06/1993). The Ushers cosponsored the Father's Day dance (223:13/06/1993).


Diez y Seis

Diez y Seis de Septiembre is a Mexican patriotic holiday. It memorializes the day in 1810 when Father Miguel Hidalgo y Castilla read the Grito de Hidalgo from the church steps in the town of Dolores Hidalgo. It is widely celebrated in Texas wherever there is a large Mexican population, including Austin.

Ray Cortez was the director of first the 8:00AM Sunday Choir and then of the 12:00 noon Choir. In 1989, he organized a Deiz y Seis celebration on the parish grounds. In early August, he was seeking volunteers to sponsor the game booths at the fiesta (223:06/08/1989). The volunteers met in the school to plan the event on August 30 (223:20/08/1989). Until recently, Spanish was not taught or even permitted to the spoken Texas public schools and the level of literacy in Spanish among the Spanish-speaking native-born population of Texas was very low. The church secretary could not spell the Spanish words and used three different spellings for Diez y Seis over three weeks.

The event consisted of an outdoor Jamaica with food and game booths as well as a dance in the Community Center (242). The booths were made of wood and had to be erected piece by piece. The pastor thanked the men who helped erect the booths for the Diez y Seis celebration: Ray Cortez, Paul Samaneigo, Alberto Bozquez, Lorenzo Rodriguez and Pete Sepeda (223:24/09/1989).

Cinco de Mayo

The six Mexican-American parishes of Austin celebrated Cinco De Mayo in 1984 with a procession and Rosary from the French Legation to Our Lady of Guadalupe Church, followed by an outdoor Mass (223:06/05/84).


Parish Dinners, Lenten Fish Fry and Thanksgiving Dinners

Communal meals are an essential element of community life. Like all intentional communities, San José Parish has a long tradition of sharing food. Food was shared at Jamaicas, bazaars, fiestas and other events sponsored by the parish. San José also has a long tradition of serving breakfasts, lunches and take-out food as fundraisers for the parish, its buildings or its sodalities. This article describes dinners, picnics and lawn parties that are not described elsewhere.

Dinners replaced the May Bazaar in 1983

In February 1983, the Bazaar Committee decided to discontinue the May bazaars that had been held at the City Auditorium since the 1950s. The City imposed new policies that made events at the auditorium too expensive and too restrictive. Monthly dances and dinners at the Community Center replaced the income from the May Bazaar. Dances would be held monthly (except during Lent) and organizations, choirs and individuals would be recruited to sell tickets based on the model used for the February 5, 1983 pre-Lent dance. The first Parish Dinner under the new policy would be a Mexican dinner on March 20th to celebrate St. Joseph's Day.

The parish had been preparing and serving food for many years. In April 1979, the parish sponsored a spaghetti dinner that accompanied a talent show (223:April 1979 Calendar). The 1981 parish Christmas dinner was a covered dish supper (223:13/12/1981). When food was served at the coronation of a new pastor or the anniversary of a priest's ordination, everyone was invited to bring a covered dish to share (223:18/06/1989). The abandonment of the May Bazaar in the City Auditorium meant that dinners in the Community Center would be more frequent and would be fundraisers for the parish.

The first event under the new plan, in March 1983, was a meal of Mexican food to celebrate the Feast of St. Joseph (223:06/03/83). Dinner was served from 11:00AM to 2:00PM on Sunday, March 20 in the Community Center. The price was $2 per plate with tickets available at the Church office and in the rectory (223:13/03/83) (223:20/03/83). The dinner was a fundraiser for the parish.

Gabe and Rosie Villalobos and crew prepared a fajita dinner in July that raised $254.33 (223:03/07/83). Joe and Alice Maldonado sold snow cones after the 10:30AM and 12:00 AM Masses. The sales from the snow cones raised $52.75 on a Sunday in June when there was no CCD classes and $100 when school was in session. The income was listed in the church bulletin and counted as parish income (meaning it was not a fundraiser for an parish organization) (223:03/07/83) (223:28/08/83).

Joe and Frances Treviño served a Brisket Dinner on a Sunday in July and raised $139.75 (223:17/07/83). Ruben and Mary Molina served an enchilada dinner on another Sunday in July for $2.50 per plate (223:17/07/83). Breakfast was served after the first two Sunday Masses and dinner after the 3rd and 4th Sunday Mass (223:17/07/83). The income from the dinners in 1983 was often $250 per week and was usually higher than the income from the breakfasts (223:07/08/83).

Breakfast was serviced in the parish hall

However, for some reason, the dinners were discontinued in August 1983. Instead breakfast was served after the first three Masses and snow cones after the last Sunday Mass (223:14/08/83). The next Sunday Mexican Sweet Bread was added to the breakfast menu and was also sold to go (223:28/08/83).

Even though the Sunday dinners were discontinued, the tradition of serving a dinner at Thanksgiving continued. Thanksgiving dinners were sold for $3 a plate in the Community Center on Sunday, November 12 in 1983. The proceeds from the turkey dinner helped pay for a new Mother with Infant room in the renovated church (223:16/09/83). The turkey dinner raised $1,780.00 in 1983 and $1,200.35 in 1985. Paul Samaniego and others sold tickets and cooked the meal. The turkeys were donated (223:13/11/83) (223:17/11/1985).

In 1986, the Young Adults sodality sold breakfast plates on Easter Sunday from 8:00AM to 12:00 noon to raise money for a retreat they planned in Boerne, Texas (223:23/03/1986). The sale was a great success and, beginning April 20, dinner was served after the 3rd and 4th Masses on each Sunday as well as at the earlier Masses (223:13/04/1986).

On a Saturday in August 1986, the parish rented Shady Spring Barn at US Highway 183 and State Highway 71 near Callahan's General Store for the San José Parish Picnic. The picnic was from 11:00AM to 4:00PM. Each family brought food and the parish provided all drinks (beer and soft drinks) (223:15/06/1986).

In 1986, the annual Thanksgiving turkey dinner was from 11:00AM to 2:00PM in the parish hall. The plates cost $3.50 each and benefited the new church (223:26/10/1986). The dinner raised $934.35 (223:16/11/1986).

The parish picnic on Saturday, August 8, 1987, was held at Shady Springs Party Place on Sherman Road located off the Old Bastrop Highway at US 71, east of Hwy. 183. The venue was east of Callahan's General Store. Once again, the church provided drinks and music (223:26/07/1987).

The 1987 annual Thanksgiving turkey dinner in the Community Center (223:01/11/1987) had a net profit of $1,738.09 (223:2/11/1987). The money was to help pay for the new church.

The annual parish picnic in August 1988 was at Garrison Park (behind Crockett High School). Each family brought their own food and drinks. The church office staff challenged everyone to a volleyball tournament (223:24/07/1988).

The 1988 annual Thanksgiving dinner was served in the parish hall on Sunday, November 6 from 11:00AM to 1:00PM. Paul Samaniego and Ray Cortez sold tickets that were still priced at $3.50. The proceeds of $1,649.10 were for the church (223:30/10/1988) (223:13/11/1988).

Lunch was sold in 1989

In January 1989, when Frances Treviño was in charge of the breakfast program, the breakfast crews started serving lunch after the 11:00AM and 12:30PM Masses. There was a different "specialty" served every Sunday (223:22/01/89). Breakfast was still served after the first two Masses (223:18/06/1989). The new lunch program continued all year. In November, Jim Sanchez sold a brisket plate with rice and beans after 11:00AM Mass for $3.50 (223:05/11/1989).

The annual Thanksgiving Dinner in 1989 was served from 11:00AM to 2:00PM in the parish hall for $3.50 not including drink or desert. The church office sold the tickets (223:05/11/1989). María Galvan and her crew cooked and served the meal. Others donated turkeys. The $1,402.00 raised was given to the church to pay down the debt (223:26/11/1989).

Lenten fish fry began in 1991

A barbecue plate was sold in the parish hall from 11:00AM until 12:30PM on Sunday February 24, 1991 (223:24/02/1991). On the evening of the previous Friday, February 22 1991, a catfish, French fries, coleslaw and hush puppy plate was sold for $3 as a fundraiser to benefit the youth programs (223:17/02/1991) (223:05/19/1991). In 1991 Lent began on February 13. The idea of selling fish on Fridays during Lent caught on and on March 10 the sale was extended to every Friday during Lent from noon-2:00PM and 5:00PM to 8:30PM (223:10/03/1991).

A week later, the price was increased to $3.50 per plate because the cost of catfish had gone up (223:17/03/1991). Later the price was lowered to $3.00 when a different supplier was found (223:31/03/1991). The dinner service was continued after Easter with the hours and prices the same but the menu was changed to include a Chicken Fried Steak Plate consisting of Chicken Fried Steak with gravy, French Fries and salad (223:28/04/1991). The sale of dinner on Fridays continued until June 1991.

Once Lent was over, business fell off to the point where it was no longer possible to continue and in June it was announced that dinners would no longer be served on Fridays in the Parish Hall after May 31. On the same day, the bulletin announced that barbecue carryout dinners would be sold in the Parish Hall after 9:30, 11:00 and 12:30PM Masses. "We offer this service to help our parishioners feed their families economically". The price was $2 for half a chicken and $1 for one link of sausage (223:02/06/1991). The program was suspended on Father's Day (223:16/06/1991).

The 1991 Thanksgiving Dinner was served from 10:30AM to 2:00PM in the parish hall for $3.50 per plate. Joe Ramos asked for donations of turkeys (223:10/11/1991). The proceeds benefited the youth program specifically the Tuesday and Thursday night tutoring program (17/11/1991) (223:01/12/1991).

In 1992, the Lenten Fish Fries began on March 4, Ash Wednesday and took place every Friday during Lent until Good Friday, April 17. The meal cost $3.50 per plate including two pieces of catfish, French fries, cole slaw, hush puppies and tartar sauce, fried in vegetable oil. Serving hours were 11:00AM to 2:00PM and 5:00PM to 8:00PM. The proceeds were for the Youth Programs (223:01/03/1992). Manuel and Velia Castillo, Ricky and Manuela Ortiz and David Rodriguez helped at the fish fries (223:29/03/1992).

Paul Samaniego served the 1992 Annual Thanksgiving Dinner from 10:30AM to 2:00PM in the parish hall on November 15. Tickets were sold in the church foyer at the table where the candles were sold. Proceeds were for the youth programs. Price was $3.50 for turkey, dressing, giblet gravy, mashed potatoes, peas, cranberry, coffee or tea (223:08/11/1992). The workers who prepared and served the meal included: Mr. and Mrs. Martin Balderas, Luis and Pauline Martinez, Joe and Gloria Ramos, Romeo and Martina Davila, Greg and Stella Trejo, Arturo and Annie Estrda, Esther Terrazas, Michelle Corpus, Pete Sepeda, Hope Cortinas, Ralph Rivera, Veronica López and the Confirmation teachers and students (223:22/11/1992).

The annual Lenten Fish Fry had become a tradition and in 1993 a fried fishplate was available every Friday during Lent from 12:00 noon to 8:00PM in the parish hall. The price was $3.50 plate and benefitted the Youth Programs (223:28/02/1993). The 1993 annual Thanksgiving Turkey Dinner was on Sunday Nov. 14 from 10:30AM to 3:00PM in the parish hall. The dinner was prepared and served by Religious Education Department with proceeds to construction of the San José Church Playground. The committee was seeking donations of food and turkeys (223:07/11/1993).

The tradition of an annual church picnic did not end and the Family Day Picnic on Sunday, July 22, 2001 was a major fundraiser (219).


Easter Traditions, Easter Egg Hunt and liturgical traditions (Stations of the Cross)

Easter Egg Hunt

Easter Egg Hunts are a Germanic tradition that was brought to the Americas by German immigrants. Some people say the egg represents Christ's tomb. Others say that the egg is a symbol of rebirth of the earth each spring. At any rate, the tradition of decorating eggs is believed to date back to at least the 13th century. Painted or dyed eggs are not a Hispanic tradition although in some Latin American countries chocolate eggs are given as gifts during the Easter season.

The first mention of an Easter Egg Hunt at San Jose Church was a Easter Egg Hunt sponsored by San Jose School in 1957 (235). It is unknown whether the Easter Egg Hunt was an annual tradition after 1957. In March 1970, 60 dozen colored and 12 gold eggs were hidden for an egg hunt after the 10:00AM Mass (223:03/29/70). Often prizes were given to those children who found certain eggs (such as the gold-colored eggs).

Easter Egg Hunts became an annual Easter tradition after a Council of the Knights of Columbus was organized at San Jose Parish. The Easter Egg Hunt in February 1989 was a project of the CCD. Mr. Luis Ruano donated 50 lbs. of candy to CCD and the pastor said, "The Easter Bunny will know what to do with it" (223:12/02/89). The next year, 1990, the Knights of Columbus sponsored an Easter Egg hunt for children ages 1 to 12 years of age on the church grounds after the 10:30AM and 12:30PM Mass on Easter Sunday. Prizes were awarded to children who participated (223:08/04/1990).

This began the tradition of an Easter Egg Hunt at San Jose parish. In 1991, the Knights of Columbus sponsored an Easter egg hunt on March 31 for children up to12 years of age after all Masses (223:24/03/1991). The eggs were placed on the grass in front of the old church. The third annual Easter egg hunt was after the 9:30AM and 11:00AM Mass on the church grounds (223:12/04/1992). Rosie Castillo, the youth and the wives of the Knights helped hide the eggs (223:26/04/1992).

On Easter Sunday 1993, the Knights hide eggs after the 8:00AM, 9:30AM and 11:00AM Mass on the church grounds (223:04/04/1993). As the number of children in the parish and the age of the participants declined, the Easter Egg hunt changed. In 2017, the Knights laid some plastic eggs with candies inside on the lawn in front of the Religious Education office and handed bags to any youngster who showed an interest in picking them up. Only pre-school children participated.


Lent is a season of forty days, not counting Sundays, which begins on Ash Wednesday and ends on Holy Saturday. The forty days represents the time Jesus spent in the wilderness, enduring the temptation of Satan and preparing to begin his ministry. Although the Catholic Church now focuses on renewing one's baptismal commitment during Lent, it is traditionally a period of penitential preparation for Easter. Catholics were urged to fast and give up specific pleasures such as sweets or alcohol. In 1985, parishioners were urged to make a special offering for the poor. The parish distributed small cans called Lenten Offering Cans. Parishioners were urged to deposit their coins and Lenten Offering Cans in containers placed near the Altar. The money collected was for medical bills of San Jose parishioners (223: 31/03/1985).

When Msgr. Tom Frank was pastor of San Jose from 2002 to 2013, he encouraged parishioners to save the small sums they saved by forgoing certain pleasures during Lent (such as coffee, soft drinks, candy, etc.) and depositing the money in boxes or cans that were then donated to charity. He provided the boxes or cans. In 1991 the project, known as Ashes to Easter, became an annual diocesan project.

Prior to 1970, US Catholics fasted throughout Lent (taking one meal a day) and abstained from meat and wine on Friday. In March 1970, Rev. John Haley announced in the Sunday Bulletin that the emphasis had changed from the sadness at the death of Jesus to joy at his resurrection. So of the fast days and days of abstinence only Ash Wednesday and Good Friday remained. Easter Sunday is now a day to rejoice (223: 08/03/70).

The forty days of Lent begin with the distribution of ashes on Ash Wednesday. Ashes are typically distributed four times on Ash Wednesday, after the morning Mass, at noon, at 4:00PM and again after the evening Mass (223:17/02/1985). In 1985, Paul Gonzales wrote the script for an Ash Wednesday play that he, Don Chaffer and Leon Ramirez acted out (223: 03/03/1985). The Ash Wednesday ceremony attracts the largest crowds of the year. In 1993, there were concurrent Masses at 7:00PM in the church and the parish hall, each with distribution of ashes to accommodate the large crowds of faithful that participated (223:21/02/1993).

Stations of the Cross

During Lent, many parishioners participate in a faux pilgrimage to the Stations of the Cross every Friday after Mass (223:17/02/1985). At Catholic churches, the Stations of the Cross are a series of devotions that are performed at each of fourteen plaques depicting incidents during Jesus' progress from his condemnation by Pilate to his crucifixion and burial. In recent years, various San Jose sodalities also stage a live performance of the Stations of the Cross. This is a Mexican tradition that was brought to San Jose Parish by recent immigrants.

During Lent in 1991, the Stations of the Cross were part of the noon Holy Hour (223:17/02/1991). Holy Hour and Rosary were scheduled every weekday from noon to 1:00PM in the new church from January 7 until February 18 when it became Holy Hour, Rosary and Stations of the Cross until Lent ended on March 22 (223:17/02/1991).

Easter Sunday

Easter is the celebration of the Lord's resurrection from the dead. It is the most important event of the year for the Catholic Church. In 1985, the Easter Mass schedule began on Holy Thursday at the 7:00PM Mass and Washing of Feet. This Mass was followed by Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament until Midnight. Good Friday services began at 2:00PM with the Seven Last Words and Stations of the Cross followed by Good Friday 3:00PM Communion Service and Veneration of the Cross. The next day, Holy Saturday began with Confessions from 4:00PM to 6:45PM followed by the 7:00PM Easter Vigil Mass. Easter Sunday followed the normal Mass schedule (223: 31/03/1985).

Easter Sunday begins the fifty days from the Sunday of the Resurrection to Pentecost. The Sundays of this time of year are considered to be Sundays of Easter and are called Easter Sunday, the Second Sunday of Easter, the Third Sunday of Easter and so on to the Seventh Sunday of Easter. The sacred period of fifty days concludes with Pentecost Sunday. 



Fall Fundraiser: Fiesta Patria/Jamaica

A lawn fete is an outdoor feast or party while a lawn fest is an outdoor music festival. Both terms have been used to describe what are known at San José Church as a Jamaica. At San José Church, Jamaica is the term used for the outdoor fiestas or parties that were originally sponsored by the Society of Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe or Guadalupanas. The first San Jose Jamaica took place in June 1940 to mark the completion of the first San José Church on W. Mary Street (221). The Jamaica usually featured musical or spoken performances by parishioners followed by a dance with a band or orchestra (210). Gradually the term Jamaica became associated with a major fundraising event sponsored by the Parish and held in the fall of the year. A similar event that took place in the spring of the year was called the church bazaar. The fall event took place in July, August, September or October. The spring event usually took place in May.

According to Mrs. Amelia (Molly) Resas, when Rev. Mendez requested help to raise money for a church, she and the ladies of the church community began having "reunions". The "reunions" were day-long events of family-oriented activities and fellowship whose purpose was to raise funds for the new church. After the first church was built, Mrs. Resas formed the Guadalupanas and that organization became the primary sponsors of the annual Jamaica (229).

Very little information about San Jose Jamaicas prior to 1961 has survived. However, the Catholic Archives has preserved a poster advertising an event called Fiesta Patria held on September 18 and sponsored by San José Church (33). The poster is not dated but the event probably took place between 1953 and 1955 at San Jose Church. September 16 is Mexican Independence Day and is usually celebrated on the night of September 15 and during the day on September 16. This event was moved to the following weekend.

The program consisted of a welcome by Luís Z. Calderón followed by the presentation of the flags of the US and Mexico accompanied by the two national hymns. After the hymns, San Jose Boy Scout Troop 94 escorted the Queen and Her Court into the hall. Mrs. Emma Long, a member of the Austin City Council, crowned the Queen. Mr. Jose Rocha then read the Mexican Declaration of Independence. Three speeches and a dance presentation followed the reading of the Declaration of Independence. The names of the five Queen candidates, the thirteen guests of honor and the twenty parishioners who helped organized the event were listed on the poster.

The program began at 9:00PM and the termination of Jamaica that included booths selling food, especially tamales, booths with games for children and bingo games for the adults. This may have been an annual event but no documents exist that attest to that.

A Sunday Bulletin was not printed until December 1960 so little is known about San José Jamaicas before that date. The first such event that is mentioned in the Sunday Bulletin took place on the evening of Sunday, August 27, 1961 (223:08/27/61). The event was called the Summer School Jamaica and netted $56.68 (223:09/10/61). A similar event took place a month later (223:09/17/61). The stated purpose of the two events was to raise money for the Church.

1966 Jamaica

In 1966, the Society of the Sacred Heart of Jesus (the Socios) sponsored a fundraising event in the fall of the year. The 1966 Jamaica included a Court of Honor consisting of two young ladies who represented Spain and Mexico and another young lady who was called the Festival Queen. Several candidates vied to be the Festival Queen by selling raffle tickets. The candidate whose sponsors sold the most tickets was crowned the Festival Queen (223:07/10/66).

1967 Jamaica

In 1967, the Guadalupanas sponsored the Queen Contest or Concurso de la Reina. Once again, the candidates competed for the title by selling raffle tickets. Competition between the groups sponsoring Queen candidates was fierce and the candidates sold tickets worth $2,453.05. The successfully candidate was crowned at 7:00PM in the middle of the Farewell Program for Fr. Joseph Houser. The Queen was Rita Ramírez. Her court was Renee Shipp, Nancy Castruita and Agapita Orta (223:07/02/67).

1968 Jamaica

The following year, 1968, the fall event was sponsored by a committee headed by Roy Perales. The event took place on a Sunday evening in July. Various church organizations built and manned booths. The Guadalupanas sponsored and manned five booths, the Activities Club sponsored three booths and the PTA sponsored five booths (223:07/21/68).

1970 Jamaica

In 1970, the fall event was a carnival at Gillis Park that began at 6:00PM. The carnival included a dance, a bingo game, children's games, food and coronation of a queen (223: 01/26/70). In 1971, the event returned to the church campus and was organized by the Guadalupanas. This Jamaica marked the 30-year anniversary celebration of the Guadalupanas (249: 21/07/74). The event was originally planned to take place on Sunday at the San Jose Community Center. It began at 10:00AM and ended at 10:00PM. Bingo games began at 8:00PM and ended at 10:00PM. Crowning of the Little Queen was originally scheduled at take place after the conclusion of bingo at 10:00PM (223:07/18/71). The schedule was changed to have the crowning of the Queen take place at 8:00PM. The bingo games began at 5:00PM and ended at 8:00PM.

1971 Jamaica

The crowning of the Queen was a central feature of the 1971 Jamaica. There were four queen candidates vying for the position (223:06/20/71). On Sunday, July 11; Saturday, July 17 and Sunday, July 18, three of the four candidates for Queen sponsored dances at the Community Center to benefit their candidacy. These were dances with an entry fees ranging from $1.50 to $5 per person with music provided by local bands (223:07/11/71). One of the candidates also sold cakes after 10:00AM and 12:00AM Mass (223:07/18/71).

1974 Jamaica

In 1974, the event was a two-day event at the end of September. On both days, the event began in the early afternoon and ended with a dance in the Community Center. Tamale dinners, drinks, hot corn and games were available all afternoon (223:09/15/74).

1978 Jamaica

In 1978, Mrs. Frances Treviño, President of the Guadalupanas, was in charge of the Jamaica (223:08/10/78). The Jamaica took place on Sunday, November 2 on the church grounds. It was preceded by a Thanksgiving turkey dinner that started at 11:00AM and ended at 2:00PM (223:29/10/78). The Jamaica began at 1:00PM (223:11/11/78).

Organizations that sponsored booths in 1978 included the Ladies Auxiliary of the Catholic War Veterans, the Socios, the Guadalupanas and the 10:00AM Choir. Of the seventeen booths, at least eight sold food. The net proceeds from the turkey dinner were $518 (223:26/11/78). The largest moneymaker from the Jamaica was the raffle (which netted $1,220) and a cake walk (that netted $225) (223:19/11/78).

1981 Jamaica

By 1981, the Jamaica King and Queen Contest had grown so popular that the pastor, Rev. John Korcsmar, issued rules to govern the contest (223:06/09/1981). The candidates should be aged 5 to 7. Each organization could sponsor only one candidate, either for King or Queen, and dates were assigned to the different organizations to use parish facilities to raise funds for their candidates (223:27/09/1981). The Socios, Catholic Adult Organization, Catholic Youth Organization, the Mission Group and CCD all sponsored candidates (223:20/09/1981).

The Jamaica was scheduled for Sunday, November 1. The twenty-four booths included five that were operated by CCD, three operated by the Catholic Youth Organization and two operated by the Socios. The Catholic Adult Organization, the 10:00AM Choir and the staff of the San Jose Community Center each operated one booth. Romana Salazar sold religious articles and Lucy Polanco sold beef tacos (223: 01/11/1981) (223: 08/11/1981).

1982 Jamaica

Planning for the 1982 Fall Fiesta was underway in July 1982. The event was scheduled for Sunday, October 17 and would benefit the CCD program (223:18/07/82). 50 people were needed to help with the booths and planning (223:08/08/82). The twelve to fifteen persons on the planning committee were in charge of publicity, beer sales, the King and Queen contest, tickets, booths and the dances (223:22/08/82) (223:31/10/82). The kick-off event was a dance at the Community Center on August 28 (223:22/08/82).

The Sunday Bulletin urged boys aged 4 to 8 to run for King of the Fall Fiesta (223: 05/09/82). The King and Queen Candidates in 1982 were Christopher Tello, Stephanie Santa Ana, Audrey Nicole Navarro, Bernadette Garcia and Daniel Medrano. The Queen and King candidates sold Mexican sweet bread after all Masses on September 26 (223:26/09/82). Together the candidates raised $2,734 for the church (223:17/10/82). The winners were crowned during the Jamaica at 6:30PM on Sunday evening (223:17/10/82).

The Jamaica included a three-day carnival at 507 Havana Street, across from Dawson Elementary School, and a bar-b-que dinner at the San José Community Center (223:26/09/82). The Fall Fiesta itself began with a preview dance on October 9 in the Community Center with El Conjunto Carinito (the Aguilar family band) (223:26/09/82). The 38 booths included stands that sold beer (sponsored by the Socios), wine coolers (Mission Group), cokes (Community Center), tamales (Guadalupanas), hamburgers (Paul Samaniego), a jail house (High School CCD), a menudo cooking contest (the Socios), a cake walk, ring toss and four game booths (223:19/09/82).

Total Income from the 1982 Jamaica was $11,481, total expenses were $3,954 and the net profit was $7,527 (223:31/10/82). The total sales from the booths were $7,967. This figure included sales of beer $1,103; wine coolers $768; fajitas $859; hamburgers $800; ring toss $337; supper at the Community Center $306 and tamales $273 (223:31/10/82). The Fall Fiesta Dance and beer sales at the dance netted $769 and the Queen and King Candidates raised a total of $2,734 (223:17/10/82).

1983 Jamaica

The first planning meeting for the Fall Fiesta of 1983 was in June (223:26/06/83). In early 1983, the decision had been made to discontinue the annual spring Bazaar that was held at the City Auditorium in May. The May Bazaar would be replaced by monthly dances and dinners (223:20/02/83). This decision meant that the annual fall Jamaica became the primary fundraising event of the year. The result was a much larger event. However, it is worth noting that breakfast income for 1983 through November was $8,671.20 and income from dances in 1983 through November was $16,386.77 (Progress Report of San Jose Parish, November 1982-1983, Catholic Archives). These two ministries (the breakfast groups and the dance community) raised more money than did the Jamaica.

The forty-nine booths in the Fall Fiesta of 1983 had total sales of $13,939.96. The biggest sales were beer ($2,548), hamburgers ($1,590), fajitas ($1,243), tamales ($919) and cokes ($852). Biggest game booth sales were coke toss ($354) and coin toss ($286). The raffle was replaced by five door prizes valued at $1,000; $500; $100; $50 and $50 (223:25/09/83). A total of $8,092 in door prize tickets were sold and three persons received prizes for selling the most tickets (223:09/10/83) (223:18/09/83).

The 1983 Jamaica was the first to be held on a Saturday. The San Jose Fall Fiesta for 1983 was scheduled to begin at 11:00AM and end at 10:00PM on Saturday, October 1 on the church grounds. There was no program booklet and the sponsors were listed on one sheet (223:25/09/83). Tony Verer furnished the complete wiring system for the Fiesta. The following groups provided music: Johnny Degollado, Grupo Inca, Los Cinco Reyes and Los Hermanos Rodriguez (223:16/09/83). The gross for the Fall Fiesta in 1983 was $25,031.96 with a net profit of $17,412.99 (223:16/09/83). An evaluation meeting met about a week later (223:09/10/83) and a Fiesta Evaluation Form was mailed to many parishioners (223:06/11/83).

The pastor, Rev. Fred Underwood, C.S.C. wrote the following, "Fiesta of San Jose last week was a great success not only financially but in other ways as well. There was a great spirit of unity, cooperation, a generosity among all the workers. They worked hard and long before and during the Fiesta. The people who came to the Fiesta mentioned how much they enjoyed it also. It was wonderful to see people dancing to the music that provided a joyful atmosphere throughout the afternoon and night. And the good Lord provided us with a perfect day. The temperature was just right."

"We want to take this opportunity to thank everyone who helped make this Fiesta a success: the many people who came, the persons who contributed prizes, all the workers who spent long hours before and after the Fiesta. We all owe a special thanks to our three Chairmen: Margarito Rodriguez, Ray Castro, and Rudy Duran who literally spent many days and nights organizing and coordinating it. Likewise, we are deeply grateful to our office staff and workers who worked many nights and weekends volunteering their time along with all the other Fiesta workers.

The proceeds from this Fiesta come at a most opportune and critical time. We need the money not only to pay some immediate bills on the expansion and remodeling of the church, but also to help finance our CCD program.

For details concerning the proceeds of the Fiesta, please see the insert in the bulletin" (223:09/09/83).

1984 Jamaica

The 1984 Fall Fiesta was even larger than that of 1983. A total of about 420 volunteers built and operated about sixty-nine booths (223:29/07/84) and five orchestras provided music (223:14/10/84). The net profit was $22,371.57. By comparison, the breakfast income for 1984 was $15,289.41 and the dance net income for 1984 was $19,000.88 (Progress Report of San Jose Parish for the Year of 1984, Catholic Archives). The parish realized a profit of $56,500 from the breakfasts, dances and the Jamaica at a time when the annual Sunday Collections amounted to about $150,000 (223:12/02/84).

The first announcement for the 1984 fall Fiesta appeared in the Sunday Bulletin on May 6. It urged parishioners to grow plants for sale at the Plant Booth and to start saving egg shells for cascarones (223:06/05/84). The pastor urged parishioners to donate their old stuff (clothing, furniture, antiques, etc.) to the Jamaica ("the Bazaar in English") rather than to the Saint Vincent de Paul Thrift Store or Goodwill Industries (223:05/08/84) (223:02/09/84).

Rev. Elmer Gross, the Assistant Pastor, was the chairperson of the Jamaica Committee for 1984 (although he was sick and in a lot of pain (223:08/09/1985). The Jamaica Committee had ten volunteer directors (for games, food, drinks, entertainment, tickets, parking, publicity, signs, maintenance and miscellaneous booths (223:02/09/84). The Pastor expected 400 volunteers to help with the Jamaica (223:12/08/84). All young people were expected to help. Mary Molina coordinated the volunteers. Father Gross placed an insert in the Sunday Bulletin listing 68 booths with instructions for each parishioner to volunteer at one booth (223:26/08/84). As a result, hundreds of people volunteered for the Jamaica. Every woman was urged to make a cake or pie to sell at the Jamaica (223:23/09/84).

In those days, the booths were built of wood. Ray Castro brought two loads of wood for the Fiesta (223:03/06/84) (223:19/08/84). At least ten carpenters responded to the Pastor's call for carpenters, painters and electricians to construct and paint the booths (223:07/10/84). Four men built 100 tables (223:30/09/84) and a sign painter volunteered to paint signs for the booths (223:23/09/84). The men built 25 game booths, 16 food booths and 10 drinking booth for a total of 69 stands. One of the booths was a book store that was stocked with 500 books (223:23/09/84). The booths were dismantled and the lumber stored away on Sunday after the Jamaica (223: 22/09/1985).

The Jamaica was scheduled for Saturday, October 6 (223:29/07/84). 25,000 door prize tickets (raffle tickets) were printed (223:26/08/84) and $9,547 were sold. A CCD teacher won the $1,000 raffle prize (223:14/10/84). The Fiesta had good weather and was judged a success. The top selling booths were beer $3,335; tamales $2,127 and coke toss $380. The dance netted $2,178. The net income from four drink booths was $3,523.56; from 13 food booths $6,612.94; from 25 game booths was $2,638.25 and 20 miscellaneous booths was $9,596.82 (223:12/10/1984). Total sales were $31,306 with $8,934 in expenses for a net of $22,371 (223:21/10/84). A report was distributed in the Sunday Bulletin of October 21 that showed the gross sales, expenses and net income for each booth (12/10/1984).

In 1984, when the Fall Fiesta had a net profit of $22,371.57, breakfast income was $15,289.41 and dance net income was $19,000.88 (Progress Report of San Jose Parish for the Year of 1984, Catholic Archives). In December, the pastor announced that, "Raffles are illegal in the State of Texas. We have been advised to suspend such activities until the State Attorney General and Legislature deal with the matter" (223:02/12/84). San Jose had suspended bingo games and raffles after a confrontation with Madalyn Murray O'Hair in 1977 (251).

1985 Jamaica

The first Fiesta Planning Meeting for the 1985 Jamaica was called for Monday, June 24 (223: 23/06/1985). A second meeting was called for July 17. The chairman in 1985 was Manuel Navarro. The Parish Fiesta was scheduled for Saturday, September 14, on the church grounds from 11:00AM until 10:00PM. A sign-up sheet was distributed at Mass to encourage parishioners to help (223:14/07/1985) but some booths were still looking for helpers in August (223:11/08/1985). There were chairpersons for booths, publicity, program and entertainment (223:15/09/1985).

On the date of the fiesta, it rained for three hours in the afternoon (223:22/09/1985). Because of the rain, the Fall Fiesta for 1985 had a net profit of $13,603.40. In addition, no raffle tickets were sold because raffles had been declared to be illegal. In comparison, breakfast income for 1985 was $12,107.06 and dance net income for 1985 was $12,470.55 (Progress Report of San Jose Parish for the Year 1985, Catholic Archives).

1986 Jamaica

The annual Fiesta of 1986 that was scheduled for Saturday, October 11, was cancelled because construction of the new church occupied, "everyone's time and also there would be no parking space" (223:08/06/1986). A new church was being constructed where the school compound had been previously and the parking lot was used as a staging area for the construction. After the new church was built, the bulk of the Jamaica booths were moved up the hill to a space behind the San Jose School building.

1987 Jamaica

A list of available booths for the annual 1987 San Jose Jamaica was placed as an insert into the Sunday Bulletin on June 14 to encourage parishioners to sponsor a booth. A parish-wide meeting was called for June 24 for persons interested in helping. The Jamaica was scheduled for Saturday, October 3 from 10:00AM until 6:00PM (223:21/06/1987).

The pastor reported a successful Jamaica with many booths and happy people. However, he also announced that he would have to borrow $40,000 to make the first payment on the new church (223:11/10/1987). It appears that the 1987 Jamaica netted $12,500. This amount was added to the building fund. The fund had a balance of $52,500.000 on October 18 (223:18/10/1987).

1988 Jamaica

The Jamaica Committee met in the parish hall for the first time on August 15 (223:14/08/1988). The Jamaica was scheduled for Saturday, October 1, 10:00AM to 10:00PM. A new feature in 1988 was a raffle. Raffles had been suspended after 1977 but had been reinstated by the State Legislature. The proceeds from the raffle were used to make the payment on the new church that was due October 15.

Each registered parishioner received a book of tickets worth $10. Someone would be in the foyer of the church after each Mass for three Sundays to receive sold tickets and distribute a second book of tickets if desired. The pastor said that if each family sold one book of tickets, "we could easily have about half of what we need". Jessie Ortiz printed the tickets. Donations for the drawing included a 7-foot pool table from Luis Calderon, a 13" Color TV donated by Lack's Furniture, a gas grill donated by the breakfast group and a 10-speed bicycle from Western Auto (223:11/09/1988). First prize was an automobile (223:23/10/1988).

At the end of September, the Jamaica Committee called for food booth volunteers. The financial report for the Jamaica was distributed as an insert to the October 16, 1988 Sunday Bulletin (223:16/10/1988). The Jamaica Committee later tried to sell left over Jamaica Tee-Shirts through the church office (223:04/12/1988).

1989 Jamaica

The pastor called a parish -wide meeting on Sunday, February 5, Sunday to discuss the 50th Jamaica. The coordinators for the Jamaica were elected from those attending the meeting (223:29/01/89). The chairpersons Manuel Navarro and Santos Martinez met again on March 5 (223:26/02/89). The committee was looking for people interested in managing booths (223:19/03/89). The Jamaica was held on October 7.

The first prize for the drawing was a used Cadillac Seville. Other prizes for the raffle were a color TV, a VCR, a Ninetendo and a pendant (223:15/10/1989). Two books of 10 tickets were given to each registered family. The donation was $1 per ticket or $10 per book. Prizes were given for selling the most tickets. Tickets were sold in front of the church on every weekend in August (223:30/07/1989). The prizes for selling the most tickets was a gas grill, a $75 gift certificate from Foley's Department Store and a cassette radio (223:13/08/1989).

The 50th Anniversary Jamaica was on Saturday in the San Jose parish parking lot. (223:01/10/1989) (223:15/10/1989). The persons who sold the most raffle tickets were Tiburcio Vasquez ($604), Linda Hernandez ($510) and John Ramos (($371). All adult Jamaica volunteers were invited to a dance with free beer and snacks on Saturday, November 11. Youth volunteers got a free ticket to the November youth dance (223:05/11/1989).

1990 Jamaica

Sandra Guardiola was in charge of the 1990 San Jose Jamaica t-shirt design. The theme was, "The San Jose Family, growing through love". Entries for the t-shirt design contest were accepted until Monday, June 11 (223:03/06/1990). Joe Moreno submitted the winning design and won $25 (223:08/07/1990). Tee-shirts were sold after all masses outside the church entrance beginning in July (223:29/07/1990).

Two books of raffle tickets (20 tickets in total) were mailed to each parishioner (223:19/08/1990) and prizes were given to those who sold the most raffle tickets.

The winners of the most tickets sold contest (Linda Hernandez, Ralph Torres, Joe Maldonado) were announced on October 21 (223:21/10/1990). The raffle prizes were a used Cadillac and a woman's ring (223:26/08/1990). The Cadillac was put on display in front of the church to encourage sales (223:09/09/1990). Parishioners were urged to donate items for the garage sale, bingo and auction (223:30/09/1990).

Ester Terrazas, who was in charge of booths for the Jamaica committee (223:08/07/1990), began having planning meetings in July (223:15/07/1990). The Jamaica food booth committee met on September 18 with Robert Reyna, the food booth coordinator (223:09/09/1990) (223:23/09/1990).

Volunteers were also needed to help build booths for the Jamaica. The booths were assembled from lumber, usually used in previous years and then stored between events. The work on the booths began on September 9. The Jamaica was on the church grounds beginning Friday evening October 5 at 5:30PM and all day Saturday from 10AM until 10PM on October 6 (223:15/07/1990). The winners of the raffle were announced on October 14 (223:14/10/1990). The net profit from the Jamaica was $38,185, the highest figure in years. A detailed report of the Jamaica was available from the church office (223:18/11/1990).

1991 Jamaica

In 1991, the Jamaica Committee was Pete Sepeda; Esther Terrazas, Secretary; Pete and Connie Guerrero, Garage Sale; Manuel Navarro, Spokesman; Debbie Navarro, Publicity. Donors were Deacon and Mrs. Oswaldo Nira, Catholic War Veterans, Ladies Auxiliary of CWV, Mrs. Rose Uríegas, Rudy and Linda Pérez and Kenneth and Ana Rodríguez (223:20/10/1991).

The Jamaica Tee-shirt Logo Contest was announced in June. The prize was $25 in Jamaica tickets and the winner's name on the tee-shirts. The theme was "Families working (with) (for) (in) Christ" (223:06/02/1991). The committee met on June 24 to pick the winning design (223:23/06/1991) and the tee-shirts went on sale on July 7 after Mass. The cost was $8.50 for XXL, $7.50 for XL and L, $6.50 for children (223:07/07/1991). A Jamaica Dance at the end of July brought in $214.96 of seed money for the Jamaica Committee (223:28/07/1991).

The Jamaica committee placed a table in the foyer of the church to sign-up volunteers (223:25/08/1991). Anita Pérez was the coordinator for booths (223:01/09/1991) and Santos and Dolores Martinez was in charge of clean up (223:15/09/1991).

The first prize for the Jamaica raffle, a used Cadillac Fleetwood car, was on display in the front of the church beginning in August (223:18/08/1991). Three prizes were awarded to families that sold the most raffle tickets (223:29/09/1991). The names of the raffle winners and the winners of the most tickets sold contest were announced the week after the Jamaica. Most tickets sold winners were Ralph Torres, Sr.; Justo Cantu and Henry Flores (223:13/10/1991).

The pastor urged parishioners to donate items for the garage sale, bingo and auction to save the parish fund. Baked goods could be delivered to the Parish Hall the day before the Jamaica for sale at the Sweet Tooth Booth. The Kid's Corner Booth appealed for donations of shoeboxes, milk cartons, egg cartons, paper or toilet paper rolls (223:22/09/1991).

The Jamaica was scheduled for October 5, 1991, 10AM to 10PM. (223:01/09/1991).

Daily Mass was suspended on the Saturday of the Jamaica but confessions were heard as usual. The church was closed during the Jamaica but the picture of the Sacred Heart shed was open from 9AM to 10PM (223:29/09/1991) (223:29/09/1991). The net profit from the Jamaica was $50,579.00. The money was used to pay down the short term note of $543,384.29 (223:20/10/1991). The Jamaica fund was used to make up the operating deficit (223:20/10/1991).

1992 Jamaica

The Jamaica date was set for October 3, the first Saturday in October 1992 (223:13/09/1992). The pastor announced in August that the proceeds from the Jamaica would go towards the Youth Program. He said that, in 1991, the Youth Program cost the parish $120,000 each year (223:09/08/1992).

The Jamaica Tee-Shirts went on sell in August for $7.50 and $8.50 for adults and $6.50 for children (223:02/08/1992). Anita Pérez was in charge of the booths (223:23/08/1992). Food booth workers met in the school with Joe Ramos and Robert Reyna in September. Joe Ramos was the church bookkeeper (223:13/09/1992).

Those who sold the most tickets won prizes (CD player, bicycle or AM/FM Radio with cassette) (223:27/09/1992). The grand prize was another Cadillac plus other prizes. The pastor appealed for used items for the bingo, auction and garage sale. A garage sale on July 25 raised seed money for the committee (223:21/06/1992).

During the Jamaica, the 7:00PM Mass was cancelled and the church was closed except for confessions from 4:00PM until 5:30PM. The Jamaica volunteers were acknowledged at the 12:30PM Mass on October 18 (223:18/10/1992). The pastor said the Jamaica was a big success (223:11/10/1992).

1993 Jamaica

The 1993 Jamaica Committee was Robert Menchaca, Chairman; Rufus Dávila, 1st Vice Chair; Rosie Castillo 2nd Vice Chair; Vincente and Corrine Rocha, Treasurer; Esther Terrazes, Secretary; Robert and Margret Reyna, Food Coordinators; Annie Estrada, Game Coordinator; Yvonne Reyna, Reina Coordinator; Avelia (Billie) T. Menchaca, Prize Coordinator; Victor Balderas, Entertainment Coordinator; Sylvia Finch, Tee-Shirt Coordinator; Tony DeLeon, T-Shirt Coordinator; Linda Govea, Committee Member; Margaret Uriegas, Committee Member; Renee Rivera, Committee Member (223:23/05/1993). Robert Reyna was in charge of food booths and Annie Estrada was in charge of game booths (223:08/08/1993).

The Jamaica Committee started fundraising with bake sales on May 30 and June 13 to raise seed money for the Jamaica (223:30/05/1993) (223:06/06/1993). The Committee also had a garage sale on Saturday, August 7 in the Parish Hall (223:25/07/1993). Raffle tickets were not mailed but could be picked up after all Masses outside the church entrance (223:13/06/1993). Prizes were awarded to those who sold the most raffle tickets. The raffle prize was a new truck, a six-day trip to Manzanillo, a four-day trip for four to Fiesta Texas and seven lesser prizes (223:30/05/1993) (223:13/06/1993). Parishioners were urged to save egg shells for the cascaron booth. Souvenir Jamaica tee-shirts were sold for $6.50 small, $7.50 large and $8.50 extra-large (223:11/07/1993).

Girls, aged 14-17, who wanted to compete to raise money for the church, were asked to contact Yvonne Reyna, the Reina coordinator. The Jamaica Queen candidates were Joann Olivares, Erica Ortiz, Angelica Maria Ramos and Anna Sabana (223:15/08/1993) (239) (223:17/10/1993).

The 1993 San Jose Jamaica was held on the church grounds between the brick school building and the old convent building. There were twenty-nine game booths, seventeen food booths, seven other booths and Bingo in the hall. Music was provided by eleven bands or musical groups.

2001 Jamaica

The 2001 Jamaica Committee Chair was Gonzalo Martinez with Christina Miranda, the Finance Chair. There were 15 persons on the committee were Juan Rodriguez Finance; José Tapia Set-up; Raul Espinoza Food; Cecil Freitas Utilities; Irma Prado Games Coordinator; Elisa Cortinas Vice-Chair; Jose and Lucia Mendez Business relations; Theresa Stockdale T-shirts; David Moreno Set-up; Nina Cardenas Secretary; Prescilla Garza and Melinda Robledo (219). The Jamaica was on Saturday, October 6.

2008 Jamaica

The total sales of the 2008 annual San Jose Jamaica were $103,863 with expenses of $48,202 and a net profit of $55,661. Sales of food totaled $33,326; of Games $15,271 and of Raffle tickets $40,540 (223).

2009 Jamaica

The best food booth decoration prizewinners were Knights of Columbus Ladies Auxiliary, Guadalupana's Plant booth and the Knights of Columbus. Twenty-four raffle prizes were raffled off. It rained all day. Total sales were $81,052 with expenses of $43,308 for a Net Profit of $37,744. Total sales of food and games was $27,311; of Raffle tickets $40,545 (223)

2010 Jamaica

The best food booth decoration prizewinners were MFC (Movemiento Familiar Christiana), Guadalupanas and Sagrado Corazón. There were 30 Jamaica Raffle prizewinners. Total sales were $115,823 with expenses of $38,544 for a net profit of $77,278. Sales of food were $38,547; Sales of Game booth were $13,936; Sales of Raffle Tickets $44,495 (223). The annual Jamaica was on October 2.

2011 Jamaica

The best food booth decoration prizewinners were MFC (Movemiento Familiar Christiana), Guadalupanas and Knights of Columbus. There were 26 Jamaica Raffle prizewinners. Total food sales were $35,000; game booth sales were $13,367 and sales of raffle tickets totaled $45,541. Total sales were $112,819 with expenses of $41,733 for a net profit of $71,085 (223).

People on the Jamaica Committee included Eddie and Christine Orozco, Gilbert and Tina Rodriguez, Gloria and Victor Cruz, Jesse Tristan, Anita Pérez and David & Linda H. Urban.

2012 Jamaica

The best food booth decoration prizewinners were MFC (Movemiento Familiar Christiana), Guadalupanas and Sodas and Water. There were 29 Jamaica Raffle prizewinners. Food Sales total about $34,000; Games Sales were $14,503; Sales of Raffle Tickets amounted to $42,586 for a total income of $111,441. The expenses were $41,136 for a Net Profit of $70,305. The weather was cool and many children attended (223). The Jamaica was on October 6.

2013 Jamaica

The best food booth decoration prizewinners were Sodas and Water, Guadalupanas, Knights of Columbus/Sagrado Corazón and Auction. There were 32 Jamaica Raffle prizewinners. Food Sales were about $40,000; Game Sales were $11,149; Raffle Ticket Sales were $45,726 and the total sales were $114,171. The expenses were $44,373 for a Net Profit of $69,798 (223).


Feast of St. Joseph

The name of a new Roman Catholic Church is selected by the pastor, subject to the approval of the local bishop. In 1939, Rev. Alberto Mendez selected Saint Joseph as the Patron Saint of the mother church of the Mexican Missions. It is customary for a Catholic church to celebrate the feast day of its patron. St. Joseph has two feast days on the liturgical calendar: March 19, Joseph, the Husband of Mary and May 1, Joseph the Worker. The Feast Day of St. Joseph on May 1 was added by Pope Pius XII in 1955 as a counter-celebration to the May Day as celebrated by Socialists and Communists. Because the parish was founded in 1939, before the addition of the second feast day, March 19 is the proper feast day of the patron of San José Catholic Church.

Few records of events at San José Parish exist prior to 1960 when the Sunday Bulletin began to be published. However, it is probable that the Feast Day of San José the Husband of Mary was celebrated as an annual event by the parish. On Sunday, March 19, 1961, the Feast of San José was celebrated with General Communion of all Church Organizations. The Mass began with a procession of the Sodalities, Veterans, Scouts, Servers and children representing the Holy Family (223:03/19/61).

St. Joseph the Husband of Mary

On Tuesday, March 19, 1961 the Feast of the parish's Patron, San José began at 7:30PM with a procession of all sodalities followed by Mass (223:03/17/63). In those days, all parish sodalities had banners that they carried in processions and displayed during meetings and ceremonies. The procession wound through the streets of the neighborhood surrounding the church and then entered the church.

On Thursday, March 19, 1964, the procession began at 7:30PM followed by Rosary and a benediction (223:03/08/64). In 1966, the celebration fell on a Friday. Because the event fell on a weekend, the decision was made to celebrate the Feast of San José with a traditional Mexican fiesta. Since the fiesta took place during Lent, the pastor obtained an exemption from the requirement to abstain from meat on Fridays during Lent. He announced that, "All in San José Parish may eat meat that day" (223:03/13/66).

In 1970, the Feast of St. Joseph was on a Thursday. The Liturgical Committee of Parish Council sponsored a festival (213). The celebration was modest and consisted of Mass at 7:00PM following by a social event with refreshments in the church hall (223:03/15/70). In 1971, the Feast fell on Friday but no fiesta was scheduled perhaps because the pastor could not exempt the parishioners from the meatless Friday requirement. The celebration consisted of a Mass in honor of Saint Joseph (223:03/14/71).

St. Joseph the Worker

St. Joseph's Day in 1976 was a day of prayer for the universal church (223:14/03/76). The Sunday Bulletin announced that the Catholic Church celebrates Labor Day on May 1 by emphasizing the Feast of St. Joseph, the Worker (223:25/04/76). In 1979, a special Mass was said at 5:30PM for St. Joseph on Sunday, March 18. The Mass was followed by a pot-luck covered dish dinner in the Community Center. Each family was asked to bring a dish (223:11/03/79).

The Fiesta or Feast of Saint Joseph/San José was not celebrated every year. The next mention of the Feast of Saint Joseph in the San José Sunday Bulletin was in March 1984 when it was announced that the Fiesta de San José would be celebrated with a Rosary at 6:35PM, Mass at 7:00PM and refreshments at 7:30PM in the Community Center (223:18/03/84). The next year, 1985, the Feast of St. Joseph was celebrated with a homily on St. Joseph at the 7:00PM Mass and refreshments after Mass at the Community Center. Because this feast fell during Lent, a larger celebration was scheduled for May 1st (223: 17/03/1985).

In 1986 and 1987, the parish considered the idea of moving the celebration to May 1 again. On Thursday, May 1, 1986, the daily Mass was in honor of St. Joseph the Worker. Rev. Underwood said this was appropriate because the parish was beginning, "a large building program here at San José" (223: 27/04/1986). In 1987, the feast of St. Joseph fell during Lent and during the annual parish Mission. For these reasons, the annual celebration was moved to May 1, the Feast of St. Joseph the Worker (223:15/03/1987). However, the festival itself was perfunctory and the only scheduled event was the 7:00PM daily Mass (223:26/04/1987).

The parish remained undecided on the matter of which date to celebrate. When the parish was founded in 1939, its patron was St. Joseph the Husband of Mary. However, the Third Church was dedicated to St. Joseph the Worker. In February 1990, the Pastoral Council discussed, "How to celebrate St. Joseph's Feast day (March 19 and May 1)" (223:04/03/1990). On March 17, 1991, the pastor invited parishioners to attend 7:00PM Mass on Tuesday, March 19 to thank St. Joseph (223:17/03/1991).

The next year, 1992, the pastor announced a Special Mass and Novena in honor of St. Joseph at 7:00PM on May 1 with refreshments and sweets in the parish hall afterward (223:26/04/1992). Then on March 19, 1993, the Feast of St. Joseph was celebrated by praying the Novena Prayer as follows:

"O Glorious St. Joseph, faithful follower of Jesus Christ, to you do we raise our hearts and hands, to implore your powerful intercession in obtaining from the kind Heart of Jesus all the helps and graces necessary for our spiritual and temporal welfare, particularly the grace of a happy death, and the special favor we now implore. (Mention your petition. Then say the following seven times in honor of the seven sorrows and joys of St. Joseph.)

"O Glorious St. Joseph, through the love that you bore to Jesus Christ, and for the glory of His Holy Name, design to hear our prayers and obtain for us our petitions. O Jesus, Mary and Joseph, come to our assistance, Amen." (223:14/03/1993).                                                                                               


Mañanitas para la Virgen de Guadalupe

The name and image of the Virgin of Guadalupe were unifying national symbols for Catholic Mexico during the colonial period and remain so today. The Virgin of Guadalupe is still intimated connected to Mexican nationalism and the Mexican identify. A famous Mexican novelist (Carlos Fuentes) said that every Mexican is, at heart, a Guadalupano (a devotee to the Virgin of Guadalupe).

Throughout Mexico, Mañanitas para la Virgen is song at daybreak on the morning of December 12 to commemorate the Virgen's appearance to San Juan Diego Cuauhtlatoazin in the very early hours of Tuesday, December 12, 1531. A more elaborate celebration takes place at the Basilica in Mexico City. During the night between the 11th and 12th of December, Mañanitas are sung in the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City to the honor of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The singers are Mexico's most famous and popular artists. The service is broadcast nationally beginning at 11:00PM during the night of December 11(

It is not known when the Mañanitas were first song at San José Church. The first mention of the celebration at San José Church records dates from 1963 when December 12 fell on a Thursday. According the Sunday Bulletin, "the two Sociedades (the Guadalupanas and the Socios del Sagrado Corazón de Jesús) will sing Mañanitas at 5:30AM, followed by Mass at 6:15AM" (223:12/22/63). Mexicans living in South Austin likely sang the Mañanitas even before San José Church was founded in 1939.


The celebration always begins before sunrise and begins with the singing of a song that originated in Zacatecas in 1896, called "las mañanitas". The following is the most common version of the lyrics of the song.

Estas son las mañanitas, que cantaba el rey David, hoy por ser día de tu santo, te las cantamos a tí,

Despierta, mi bien, despierta, mira que ya amaneció, ya los pajaritos cantan, la luna ya se metió.

Qué linda está la mañana en que vengo a saludarte, venimos todos con gusto y placer a felicitarte,

El día en que tu naciste nacieron todas las flores, y en la pila del bautismo cantaron los ruiseñores.

Ya viene amaneciendo, ya la luz del día nos dio, levántate de mañana, mira que ya amaneció.

Volaron siete palomas por toditas las ciudades. Hoy por ser día de tu santo, Te deseamos felicidades.

Ya viene amaneciendo, ya la luz del dia nos dió, levantarte de la mañana, mire que ya amaneció.

Despierta (nombre), despierta. Paso el tiempo de dormer, ya los gallos muy contentos cantaron kikirki.

Ya viene amaneciendo, ya la luz del dia nos dió., levantarte de la mañana, mire que ya amaneció.

Quisiera ser solecito para entrar por tu ventana, y darte los buenos días acostadita en cama,

Ya viene amaneciendo, ya la luz del dia nos dió, levantarte de la mañana, mire que ya amaneció.

Quisiera ser un San Juan, quisiera ser un San Pedro para venirte a saludar con la música del cielo.

Ya viene amaneciendo, ya la luz del dia nos dió. Levantarte de la mañana, mire que ya amaneció.

De la estrellas del cielo tengo que bajarte dos, una para saludarte, otra para decirte adios,

Volaron cuatro palomas por toditas las ciudades, hoy por ser día de tu santo te deseamos felicidades.

Con rácimos de (ó jasmines y) flores, hoy te vango a saludar, hoy por ser día de tu santo te venimos a cantar.

Following the singing of the mañanitas, other traditional songs relevant to the Lady of Guadalupe are song until the morning Mass begins thirty minutes or an hour later. The singing continues with only brief pauses and occasional shouts of, "Que Viva La Virgen de Guadalupe" followed by a response from the crowd of, "Que Viva".

In 2001, when December 12 fell on Wednesday, the song service began at 5:00AM and included thirteen song titles: Que Linda Esta La Mañana, Veneramos A María, Mi Virgencita, Virgencita De Las Flores, Desde El Cielo Una Hermosa Mañana, Cantos A La Virgen De Guadalupe, Virgen Guadalupana, Indita Mía, La Feria De Las Flores, La Virgen Ranchera, Un Canto A La Virgen, La Virgen Del Tepeyac and La Virgen Morenita. Following the singing of the mañanitas, the singing of Buenos Día Paloma Blanca introduced the Mass. The service ended with Adíos Oh Virgen De Guadalupe.

This format was followed for many years beginning before 1988 with Victor Balderas and the 8:00AM Sunday Mass choir providing the accompaniment. Although all of the songs were well-known to Mexican Catholics, the words to the songs were projected onto a screen placed behind the Altar because no printed song books were available.

The Guadalupanas sponsored the celebration

The Sodality of Our Lady of Guadalupe (la Sociedad de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe), the women's organization formed at San José Church in 1941, organized the celebration. The principal work of the Guadalupanas is to honor the Mother of God under the title of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The Guadalupanas recruited a band to lead the song service. In 1978, Rey Cortes and the 12:00AM Choir led the singing that began at 5:30AM. In later years, Victor Balderas and the 8:00AM Choir led the singing.

The Guadalupanas also decorated the shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe inside the church for the event. In the third San José Church, this shrine occupies the niche on the right-hand side of the Altar that is traditionally reserved for an image of the Virgin Mary. Inside the niche is a framed copy of the famous tilma of San Juan Diego that is displayed at the Basilica in Mexico City. The Guadalupanas drape the image of the Blessed Mother with the colors of her native home (red, green and white) and surround it with hundreds of roses. Other parishioners arrive at the service carrying bouquets of Castilian roses that the Guadalupanas carefully arranged around the image of the Virgin.

Following Mass in the main Church, the Guadalupana Society hosted a reception for all attendees in San José Community Center. They served refreshments of coffee, chocolate and Mexican sweet bread (pan dulce) (223:18/12/83). In recent years, tamales were served as well. The first written record of refreshments being served after the Feast of Guadalupe Mass dates from 1978 but the tradition began years earlier.

As early as 1963, a tradition developed of a procession in the evening of December 12. Prior to 1968, the daily Mass was said at 6:15AM and there was no daily Mass in the afternoon. In the absence of a Mass, the prayers of the Rosary followed the procession at 7:30PM (223:12/22/63). The four main sodalities each carried their banners in these processions. In recent years, the procession usually included a dance group called Matachines.

Sometimes more elaborate shows were staged in the evening after the procession. A professional company of actors from San Antonio presented a drama called The Miracle of Tepeyac on Thursday, Dec. 12, 1974 at 7:30PM in the hall. Ballet Infantil of Austin, a San José Choir and the Folk Group from St. Ignatius were also on the program. The program was in Spanish with English narration. A ticket was required for entry. Tickets were $2 for adults and $1 for children (250: 08/12/74).

In 1978, when December 12 fell on a Tuesday, las Mañanitas began at 5:30AM followed by a Mass at 6:00AM and breakfast of sweet bread, chocolate and coffee after the Mass. At 7:00PM in the evening, a procession preceded the evening Mass. Following the Mass, a potluck dinner (una comida de plato cubierto) was served in the Community Center (223:03/12/78). Rey Cortes and the 12AM Choir led the singing of the Mañanitas. The 8:00AM choir sang at the evening Mass and a group from outside the parish, Azatlan del Sur (led by Mrs. Limón), presented a dance program at the evening Mass and at the dinner that followed Mass. The Guadalupanas served the meal (223:17/12/78).

In 1981, when December 12 fell on a Saturday, the pastor called a meeting of parish organizations and prayer groups to plan a longer than usual program for the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe (223: 15/11/1981). The program consisted of the usual program of mañanitas at 6:30AM; Mass at 7:30AM and hot chocolate, coffee and pan dulce in the Community Center after the morning Mass. The children enrolled in the CCD program attended Mass at 10:00AM instead of taking classroom instruction in the school building as was usual. A procession was scheduled for the evening. Following the procession and evening Mass, a covered dish dinner was served at 7:00PM in the Community Center (223: 22/11/1981).

A Diocesan-wide event began in 1979

In January 1979, Pope John Paul II visited the Basilica in Mexico City during a trip to Mexico. The Pope's trip was widely publicized and made the Pope a celebrity. His visit to the Basilica increased interest among Catholics in the cult of the Virgin of Guadalupe. The Diocese of Austin responded to this heightened interest by promoting the Feast of the Virgin of Guadalupe as a Diocesan-wide event.

In 1981, 1982 and 1983, when December 12 fell on Saturday, Sunday or Monday, the Diocese of Austin sponsored a celebration to coincide with the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The celebration took place at the City Coliseum on Sunday afternoon and consisted of a procession and Mass. Parish groups from the six Spanish-speaking parishes in Austin were encouraged to attend with their banners. San José also supplied the choir and ushers for the 1981 event. The pastor of San José encouraged his parishioners to attend and said, "Let's have the whole city of Austin see our unity as a community of Faith and our devotion to Our Lady of Guadalupe" (223:13/12/1981). Msgr. Reyes organized a city-wide celebration for the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe at the City Coliseum in 1985. The procession started at 1:00PM with Mass at 2:00PM. The homilist was Bishop Chavez, Joya, Bishop of Nuevo Casas Grandes, Mexico (223:01/12/1985).

The Diocesan-wide events at the City Coliseum did not change the schedule of Mañanitas at San José Church. In 1983, on Monday, December 12, Mañanitas were song at San José Church from 5:00-6:00AM with Mass following at 6:00AM followed by sweet rolls, coffee and hot chocolate in the Community Center. Following the 7:00PM evening Mass, a program of songs and poems was presented in the parish hall accompanied by coffee, punch and sweet bread (223:11/12/83). Ballet Folklorico Infantil of Austin presented a program of Mexican dances.

The Mañanitas was traditionally a single day, parish-wide event. In 1982, as the event became more and more popular, particularly in the US southwest, an attempt was made to extend the celebration over three days by promoting a traditional devotion known as Tridúo a Santa María de Guadalupe. At San José Church, El Tridúo Guadalupano consisted of a service on December 10, a procession and Mass on December 11 and Mañanitas followed by Mass and hot chocolate on December 12 (223:05/12/82). Some churches continue this tradition but San José does not.

After 1982, the program of the Mañanitas at San José was fixed and continued practically the same each year until at least 1993. Typically, the celebration began at 5:00AM in the morning of December 12 in the main church followed by Spanish Mass at 6:00AM and a reception in the Community Center following Mass. The ladies of the Guadalupana Society usually served tamales in addition to chocolate and pan dulce at the reception following Mass (223: 08/12/1985) (223:06/12/1987) (223:04/12/1988) (223:09/12/1990) (223:08/12/1991). In the evening, a bilingual Mass was said at 7:00PM, the normal hour of the daily Mass (223:09/12/84) (223: 07/12/1986) (223:30/11/2003). In 1988, the Guadalupanas served refreshments after the evening Mass as well (223:04/12/1988).

Sometimes the program varied. Ballet Folklorico Infantil of Austin performed after Mass in 1983 (223:11/12/83) and, in 1993, the 8:00AM choir, directed by Manuel Gonzalez and narrated by Victor Balderas, staged a presentation of the apparition of the Virgin Mary with six actors (227). The play, "The Apparitions of Our Lady of Guadalupe to Juan Diego" was presented in the parish hall at 8:15PM, right after the Saturday Vigil Mass (223:05/12/1993). In 2003, Grupo Jovenil, Grupo Oracion and Moviemiento Familiar Christiana presented a vespers service with the Rosary, Marian concert and a play, "Apparitions of our Lady of Guadalupe" in the Community Center on December 11 (223:30/11/2003).

In 1988, the Diocesan celebration of Our Lady of Guadalupe's Feast was at San Jose Church. A procession began at the Chapel at St. Edward's University and walked through residential streets to San José Church. Mass began at 3:00PM (223:27/11/1988). In 1989, the Diocesan Hispanic Affairs Commission sponsored the Diocesan celebration of the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe on Sunday December 3 at the Austin City Coliseum. It consisted of a procession at 1PM, Rosary at 1:40PM, serenata a la Virgen at 2:15PM, folkloric dance at 3PM and Mass at 4PM. Bishop McCarthy presided at the Mass (223:03/12/1989).

In 1992, Matachines were mentioned for the first time. People were invited to learn traditional dances and prayer offerings from indigenous people to Our Lady of Guadalupe. Practice was on Saturday, November 1 from 11:00AM to 1:00PM in the old church. The dances would be performed on December 12 (223:01/11/1992).

The Guadalupans decorated the Image of Our Lady of Guadalupe in the morning of December 11, 1993. The Mañanitas began at 6:00AM on December 12 with the combined choirs of San Jose and El Grupo Tonantzin Danza Concheros (led by Sylvia Ledesma). The Mass at 8:00AM, Saturday, featured music by El Mariachi Guadalupano. A reception hosted by the Guadalupanas following in the parish hall with hot chocolate and pan dulce (223:05/12/1993).

The pastor reminded the congregation in December 2003 that the annual celebration of Our Blessed Mother was on December 12. "Our Blessed Mother is draped with the colors of her native home, red, green and white and surrounded with hundreds of beautiful roses for the celebration of her Mass. The singing begins before dawn at 5AM with Mass at 6AM followed by a reception" (226) (223:30/11/2003).

In 2015, another Mañanitas service was added to the Feast of the Virgin of Guadalupe. The second program began on December 11 with a procession and Rosary at 6:00PM, Mass at 7:00PM and ended with a Mass at midnight. Refreshments were served after the song service at 11:00PM. The traditional Mañanitas began a few hours later on December 12 at 5:00AM or 5:30AM with traditional Mexican Marian songs followed by Mass at 6:00AM. Snacks were served in the parish hall afterward the Mas as was the custom.

Until 2015, the ladies of the Sociedad de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe directed and sponsored the Mañanitas at San José Church (233). There is little evidence that the parish priest interfered with or directed the celebration at San José. The Mañanitas was a traditional event that grew out of the parish's identity as a Mexican, Mexican-American and Tejano community. Rev. Alberto J. Borruel, who was pastor from 2013 until July 2018, had other ideas about how to celebrate the Mañanitas that puzzled some parishioners and angered others.



Mardi Gras

Mardi Gras or Fat Tuesday refers to events that take place between Three Kings Day (Epiphany) and Ash Wednesday (Shrove Tuesday) especially the last day of the Carnival. The name, Mardi Gras, comes from the practice of feasting on rich, fatty foods before the ritual fasting of Lent begins on Ash Wednesday. Mardi Gras was introduced to the Americas by the Spanish but largely disappeared after the Colonial era. It survived in three Gulf Coast US cities (New Orleans, Mobile and Pensacola) and in rural areas of Mexico. In modern times, major carnivals take place in New Orleans, Mobile, Veracruz and Mazatlan.


Nothing is known about the Mardi Gras or Regio Festival of 1954 except the names of the Queen Margarita Alvarez and her escort Albert Rangel (34).


In 1955, Shrove Tuesday (Mardi Gras) fell on February 22. San José Parish and its mission, Santa Cruz, sponsored a "Regio Festival" on Saturday, February 19 at the City Auditorium (34).

The event was called, "Royal Festival of the Crowning of Her Majesty the Queen Frances the First of the Royal House of Gallardo of the Missions of San Jose and Santa Cruz". The three-part program featured the entry of the Queen complete with a flower bearer, eight young ladies representing the Pages of invited guests, seven young people who accompanied the Marquis, seven young people who accompanied the Duchess, eleven young people who accompanied the Princess and sixteen young people who were the Queen's Court. Two other young people accompanied the 1954 Queen when she entered.

Part Two of the program was the Coronation of the Queen by Louis J. Reicher, Bishop of Austin. Part Three was a presentation of typical songs and dances of Mexico and Spain by ten young persons under the direction of Mrs. Nellie Garcia. The entry fee was 25 cents for adults and 10 cents for children. Those attended the dance after the coronation paid $1.50.

Master of Ceremonies was Roberto Villanueva and the Flower Bearer was Novie Teneyuque. The eight Pages were Jo Ann Treviño, Lucill Ibarbo, Sandra Guardiola, Margaret Ramos, Jesusita Sánchez, Isabel García, Mary Louise Alvarez and Mary Jo Resas. The Marquis was Nora Rodriguez and her Court was Ester Martínez, Joe Sandoval, Beatrice Mojica, Joe Calvo, Olga Leal, Angie Sandoval, Ignacio Rodríguez Jr.

The Duchess was Janie Rodriguez and her Court was Elida Martínez, Francisco Acosta, Elizabeth Rocha, Tony García, Juanita Reyna, Melinda Martínez and Peter Sandoval. The Princess was Rosie Bargas and her Court was Alec Hernández, Robert Bargas, Annie Flores, Richard Alvarez, Filomena García, Johnny Pérez, Patsie Domínguez, Lupe Acosta, Virginia Ramos, Irene Bargas and Nick Rocha.

The Queen was Frances Gallardo and Her Court was Pete Cásarez Jr., Ramiro López, Mary Helen de León, Baldemar Reyes, Mary Estrada, Cosme Estrada, Stella Treviño, David Villasana, Linda Camarillo, Jessie Aguero, Yolanda Tijerina, Magdalena Ríos, María Consuelo Ledesma, Johnnie Reyna, Eliosa Cruz and Rosa Rodríguez.

The typical songs and dances of Mexico and Spain were presented Mrs. Nellie Garcia, Carmen Guerrero, Nancy González, Elida Rentería, Gabriel Gutiérrez, Alicia Almazán, Nancy González, Abraham Cuevas, Carmen Guerrero, Amelia Nevárez, Mary Helen Nevárez and Ema Gene Nevárez.

The Directors of the festival were Mr. Pedro Rivera, Director General; Mrs. Antonia Herrera, Sponsor of Female Candidates from San Jose; Mr. Manuel Castillo, Sponsor of Male Candidates from San Jose; Mrs. Blasa Mendoza, Sponsor of Female Candidates from Santa Cruz; Mr. Alfredo Ybarbo, Sponsor of Male Candidates from Santa Cruz; Mr. Pedro Tamayo, Raffle; Mr. José Rocha, Music and Dance; Mrs. Nellie García, Program; Mrs. Eloisa Cruz, San Jose Court; Mrs. Rosa Rodríguez, Santa Cruz Court; Mrs. Rufina Bargas, Stage and Flowers and Mrs. Beatríz Calderón, Supper.


The pastor assigned the Men's Club several tasks in 1961. One task was to take charge of the Saturday Mardi Gras Dance at the City Coliseum on February 11 (223:01/08/61). The dance was a benefit for the church (223:01/29/61). The Chairman of the Social Committee assigned men to sell tickets and to manage table reservations. The net profit of the dance was $508 (223:02/19/61). The Men's Club met in February 1962 to make plans for the annual Mardi Gras Dance on March 3rd (223:02/11/62).


San José Parish celebrated Mardi Gras in March 1984 with a potluck supper at the Community Center for Parish families, 3PM-6PM (223:04/03/84). The Mardi Gras Dance on Saturday night was a great success (223:11/03/84).


The event was revived eight years later in March 1992. What was described as, "the first annual San José Mardi Gras celebration" was on Fat Tuesday, March 3 from 6:00PM to 9:00PM. There was a costume contest with a $50 cash prize, a street dance, food sales and a raffle. The winner of the raffle won a pre-owned Cadillac (223:26/01/1992). Gift Certificates of $50, $75 and $100 were given the persons who sold the most tickets (223:09/02/1992) (223:16/02/1992). The event was a fundraiser "for four new classrooms that are needed" (223:23/02/1992).

The event took place in the San Jose Community Center. Activities included a food fair with turkey legs, carne guisada dinner plates, pizza, barbecue brisket sandwiches on a bun, sausage on a stick wrapped with a tortilla and non-alcoholic drinks. There was a street dance followed by the drawing at 9:00PM for the Cadillac car. Each parishioner was encouraged to sell two books of tickets and turn the stubs in at the front of the church. Proceeds were to purchase two portable buildings (four classrooms) for CCD, Religious Education and meeting rooms (223:01/03/1992). The raffle prizes were the used Cadillac, a microwave oven and a video cassette recorder (VCR) (223:08/03/1992).


The "second annual Mardi Gras Celebration" took place on February 23 in the parish hall. It began at 5:00PM and ended at 9:00PM with a drawing for prizes. The fiesta offered food and fun for all plus the chance to win a Cadillac, a television, a CD player and a VCR (223:14/02/1993). The food included tamales, menudo, turkey legs, pizza, sausage wraps, popcorn, cotton candy, ice cream and soft drinks. Sentimiento, Turntable Records and El Mariachi Guadlupano provided the music. A $75 prize was offered for best costumed man and woman. The fiesta was broadcast live on KTXZ 1560AM between 4:00PM and 6:00PM with prizes given to listeners who called in. The proceeds from the event were for the youth program. The pastor advised, "You can chow down before Lent begins" (223:21/02/1993).


Miracle Including Healings and the Bleeding Picture

Healings at San José Church

In November 1985, Rev. Fred Underwood, the pastor of San José, began to report on the healings that occurred at the Thursday Night Prayer Meetings. He described three events in which a person reported being healed at the prayer service and two persons whose prayer intentions were answered (223: 03/11/1985). On the following Sunday, he reported on six others instances in which prayer cured someone or solved a pressing problem (223: 10/11/1985).

For the next seven months, he listed the names persons healed in the Sunday Bulletin. Fr. Fred said the following persons had been healed in some fashion.

November 3 1985 Castro, Julia; Rivera, Ralph; Rivera, Stella; Howard, Ken; Sanchez, Moe Sr.; Solis, Helen's daughter (223: 03/11/1985)

November 10, 1985 Hernandez, Lydia; Howard, Ken; Zapata, Ramiro III; Trevino, Joe; Maldonado, Michael Anthony a baby (223: 10/11/1985)

November 17, 1985 Deanda, Mary Lou's son; Marques, Daniel James a baby; Navejar, Margarita; Castillo, Rosie; Salazar, Jack (223: 17/11/1985)

November 24, 1985 Alvarez, Mary Louise; Amaro, Mary's son; Iruegas, Lucina, a baby; Castillo, Esmeralda; Samilpa, Josie; Riojas, John Sr.; De Ortiz Pavion, Maria Guadalupe's relatives; Murillo, Mary's son; Riojas, Anselma; Requejo, Mary Alice; Ramirez, Esther's son Roy (223: 24/11/1985)

December 1, 1985 Rodriguez, M.E.'s daughter; anonymous lady; Anguiano, Delia's husband; Requejo, Jeffrey (223: 01/12/1985)

December 8, 1985 Since we didn't have a Prayer Meeting last Thursday due to Thanksgiving, we don't have any Healings to report this week (223: 02/12/1985)

December 15, 1985 Martinez, Evette; Villalobos, Rosie; Hernandez, Lydia; Suniga, Elida (223: 15/12/1985)

December 26, 1985 No prayer meeting due to Christmas holidays (223: 22/12/1985)

January 26, 1986 Murilla, Mary and Mike; Samilpa, Josie; Arizmendez, Paul; Fabian, Gloria; Requejo, Mary Alice; Riojas, Anselma; Trevino, Frances; Durst, Julia (223: 26/01/1986).

February 2, 1986 Esther Ramirez's son; Calderon, Sergio's brother; Galvan, Carlos; Martinez, Ruth; Nombrana, Selma R.'s brother (223: 02/02/1986).

February 16, 1986 Sanchez, Moe; Riojas, Joe; Sanchez, Lupe; Murillo, Mary and Mike; Anguiano, Delia; Navejar, Margarita's son (223: 16/02/1986).

Feb. 23, 1986 Hernandez, Pauline; Arizmendez, Paul; Huerta, Simona; Calderon, Angel; Requejo, Mary Alice; Branch, Julia (223: 23/02/1986).

March 2, 1986 Moya, Mrs.; Campos, Frank's wife; Ramirez, Julian's dauaghter; Castro, Mike; Requejo, Mary Alice; Iones, Domingo; Zuniaga, Elida (223: 02/03/1986).

1968, March 9 Castillo, Isabel; Moreno, Alex; Padia, Victoria; Haynes, Elida; Anguiano, Delia; Casares, Leticia; Acuna, Bonnie (223: 09/03/1986).

1968, April 6 Hernandez, Domingo; Branch, Julia; Mrs. Flores' son; Mireles, Steve; Mr. Savas; Agado, Rose; Duran, Rudy; Alcala, Joe and Henrieta; Suniga, Diane; Anguiano, Delia's sister; Sanchez, Jim Sr. (223: 06/04/1986).

1968, April 13 Guerrero, Consuelo's mother; DeLaVega, Norbert and Mary; Rivera, John (223: 13/04/1986).

1968, April 20 Murillo, Mary's grandson; Reyna, Becky; Navejar, Margarita; Anguiano, Delia's sister; Calderon, Dolores (223: 20/04/1986).

1968, May 4 Davis, Gloria's husband; Zuniga, Diane; Mireles, Josie; Mrs. Requejo's daughter; Mascarenas, Connie; Castro, Aggie's mother (223: 04/05/1986).

1968, May 18 Esquivel, Rosa; Rittenberry, Gloria's husband (223: 18/05/1986).

1986, June 15 Garcia, Vivian; Loera, Angelina; Requejo, Mary Alice; Samilpa, Josie (223: 15/06/1986).

On May 18, 1986, after the 11:00AM Sunday Mass, while people were being prayed over to receive the Holy Spirit, a woman received a prophecy from Jesus, "I am very pleased with what is happening at San José Parish" (223: 25/05/1986).

Apparently, not everyone was pleased that San Jose had become known for its healing services and Charismatic prayer services. In September 1989, Fr. Underwod inserted a piece called, "A Time to Give Thanks" in the Sunday Bulletin. It refers to "those who have caused all this confusion and dissension". He referred to "the hurts and problems these few have caused" and advised parishioners to "continue to pray the Evil One will no longer harass us and San José Parish". He pointed out that, "Anytime the Holy Spirit is working in power, e.g. the thousands of conversions, numerous healings weekly, the constant striving for holiness by most of our parishioners, we can expect the Devil to be upset and attack us. He has and he has lost. He will continue to attack us but he has learned that he is powerless when confronted by the Power of Jesus, the Risen Christ" (223:17/09/1989).

The pastor called upon parishioners to pray and fast to put an end to the conflict. He was able to report, in a piece in the Sunday Bulletin, called, "Good News" that, "Thanks to all your prayers and fasting, San Jose has returned again to a parish united by the Holy Spirit where love is again experienced in the Liturgies and our parishioners. Sunday, September 10th, was our lowest attendance at all the Sunday Masses evidenced by one of the lowest collections, $8,206.26. At least a few hundred parishioners were absent Sunday, a culmination of the adverse affect these several members of this "group of 30", had on our parish. This was the Sunday we printed the insert and announced the cause of these problems. But once our parishioners discovered these persons who caused this negative influence had left the parish, many persons volunteered to help with the Jamaica, and these few hundred parishioners returned last Sunday and again our Sunday collection of $9,487.07 (over $1,200 more than the previous Sunday) reflected this. Praise God! Our parish has returned to the loving parish it used to be" (223:24/09/1989).

Beginning in 1981, six Croatian Catholic children began reporting visions of the Virgin Mary. In November 1990, Cyril Auboyneau, who, according to the Sunday Bulletin was recognized as one of the best sources of information on the happenings in Medjugorje, Yugoslavia, spoke at San José on December 4 following the Tuesday 7:00PM Mass (223:02/12/1990). The pastor pointed out that, "According to recent messages from Our Blessed Mother (see insert), the time of chastisement is here" (223:09/12/1990). He announced a Holy Hour and Rosary at noon in the new church beginning on Monday, Dec. 10 and lasting until the end of the year. This was for world peace, conversion of sinners and deeper personal conversion (223:09/12/1990). The healing service continued and between September 1991 and January 1992, Underwood reported two instances of healing (66).

The Miracle of the Bleeding Picture of Jesus

On January 11, 1991, Ed Brightson, a parishioner of San Jose Catholic Church, was praying in his home before a picture of the Sacred Heart of Jesus when blood appeared on the picture. The bleeding occurred again in the presence of seven family members. The family took the picture to San José Church and gave it to Rev. Underwood (66) (35).

The picture has a thumb-size stain that looks similar to blood underneath the glass of an 8" by 10" frame. Bishop John McCarthy convened a theological commission from the Diocese of Austin and conducted an investigation in the summer of 1991. He said that the picture was not declared to be a miracle because no objectively documented evidence was found (65) but that did not prevent hundreds of people from coming to San Jose to see the picture.

Within just a few days of the event, thousands of people came to see the picture. Many reported conversions, many healings were reported and many persons "Rested in the Spirit" while viewing the picture (35). On January 19, the Bishop of Austin John McCarthy requested that the picture be removed so it could be investigated (66) (35).

On Sunday, January 20, the pastor wrote that, "The Sacred Heart of Jesus has taken a special interest here at San Jose Parish by calling our attention to His bleeding Heart and the message He gave us (see insert). His heart that bled in the picture was just to call attention to his message. Like His and Our Mother, Mary, has been telling us: turn away from sin, turn your lives over to Jesus, pray the Rosary, etc."

We have a Holy Hour at noon. In a few weeks, we will enthrone homes to the Sacred Heart of Jesus at the weekend Masses. Shortly after that we will begin Perpetual Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, which means Jesus will be exposed on our altar 24 hours a day, seven days a week for someone to be present spending an hour with Jesus, praying, adoring, keeping him company, and loving Him. These are more ways we can allow Him to bathe us with His love and we love Him in return - which is Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Jesus gave a parishioner of San Jose Parish a message this past Tuesday, this message: "Tell Fr. Underwood, I want Perpetual Adoration at San Jose Parish and the church is to be open 24 hours a day". This message came after I wrote the above announcement that we will soon have Perpetual Adoration. Jesus' message confirms San Jose Parish will have this" (223:20/01/1991).

In early February, the pastor advised the parish that, "The picture of the Sacred Heart that reportedly bled: We have no idea how long the investigation will take-possibly a few weeks. Since there is considerable confusion and some inaccuracies in the reporting, the insert hopefully will help clarify things" (223:03/02/1991). On April 1, the Blessed Sacrament Chapel opened. It was an adoration chapel open to the public 24-hours each day. Tammy De La Rosa experienced healing in the chapel (35).

On July 29, 1991, a parishioner received a message from The Virgin Mary that She would appear on 15 August. She requested that the Rosary be prayed at San José between 1:00 and 3:00pm and that something would be seen in the sky (66). A notice appeared in the Sunday Bulletin on August 4 under a box titled, "Message from our Blessed Mother". "Our Blessed Mother Mary gave one of our parishioners a message that She wants as many of us as possible to come to the Church to pray the rosary from 1:00PM to 3:00PM this Thursday on Her Feastday (223: 04/08/1991). After the Rosary service on August 15, five hundred to six hundred people gathered outside the church to look for the promised sign. At about 4:15PM, some of the participants reported that the sun began to spin and continued to spin for 10-15 minutes. Most people in the crowd witnessed this event (66) (35). The San José Sunday Bulletin made no mention of this event.

The following day, August 16, the Bishop said that the Sacred Heart Picture would be returned to the parish with the following statement, "An investigation conducted by the Diocese of Austin concluded that divine intervention could not be verified in regard to the picture" (66) (35). The investigation included testimony of witnesses. In October, Bishop McCarthy returned the picture of the Sacred Heart that reportedly bled (223:01/09/1991).

The Picture was placed on display

A small, portable building was purchased and the picture placed inside for viewing (66) (35). An insert to the Sunday Bulletin had times and the place where the picture could be viewed (223:01/09/1991). An announcement in the Sunday Bulletin said, "Picture of the Sacred Heat of Jesus may be viewed in the small metal building opposite Parish Hall at the following times: Sunday 2:00-9:00PM; Monday-Friday Noon-9:00PM; Saturday 9:00AM - 9:00PM (223:08/09/1991). A shorter version of the announcement appeared on September 15, 22 and 29.

The pastor wrote, "Jesus said that those who view My picture with Faith, many will be healed, receive great blessings, etc. We are seeing this happen in just the first two days of viewing the picture" (223:08/09/1991). An announcement in the Sunday Bulletin, "Consecration of families and homes to the Sacred Heart of Jesus will take place this Sunday and every Sunday after the 7:00PM Mass. Consecration prayers are available in Spanish as well as English" (223:08/09/1991).

On September 29, 1991, a report entitled "While Viewing the Picture of the Sacred Heart" appeared in the Sunday Bulletin for the first time. The format was similar to the Adoration Chapel report. The title is followed by the date (Sept. 17-23, 1991) and "Messages", three; "Visions", twelve; "Healings", eight; "Rested in Spirit", nine and "Deeper Conversions", two. The pastor said, "The above are the only ones that recorded their experiences. Most people do not record them. There are numerous conversions. Many are also inspired to go to Church and the Adoration Chapel" (223: 29/09/1991).

While Viewing the Picture

Between September 29 and November 1992, Fr. Underwood reported on the response of the people who came to see the picture. Following each date is the report that appeared in the Sunday Bulletin.

1991, September 29 "While Viewing the Picture of the Sacred Heart" Sept. 24-30, 1991, people reported visions, beautiful experiences while "resting in the Spirit" and some messages were reported". The pastor related the story of a pregnant woman who had a baby with a defective heart. The baby had stopped moving in her womb. The lady holding the picture (Mary Jenkins) placed the picture on the lady's womb and the baby was healed (223: 29/09/1991).

1991, October 13 "While Viewing the Picture of the Sacred Heart", Oct. 1-7, 1991, people reported visions, beautiful experience while "resting in the Spirit" and some messages were reported". The pastor related the story of a boy who spoke to Jesus (223: 13/10/1991).

1991, October 20 "While Viewing the Picture of the Sacred Heart", Oct. 8-14, 1991, people reported visions, beautiful experiences while "resting in the Spirit" and some messages were reported". The pastor related the story of a girl who spoke to Jesus. Mary Jenkins was the lady manning the trailer during the Jamaica on October 5 (223: 20/10/1991). Parishioners were reminded that volunteers were needed to help at the Sacred Heart building. There were five 5-hour time slots available. The contact was Sherry Joseph (223:20/10/1991).

1991, October 27 "While Viewing the Picture of the Sacred Heart", Oct. 15-21, 1991, people reported visions, beautiful experience while "resting in the Spirit" and some messages were reported". The pastor related the story of a man who was healed (223: 27/10/1991).

1991, November 3 "While Viewing the Picture of the Sacred Heart", Oct. 22-28, 1991, people reported visions, beautiful experience while "resting in the Spirit" and some healings and conversions were reported". The pastor reported on a son who reconciled with his father (233:03/11/1991).

1991, November 10 "While Viewing the Picture of the Sacred Heart", Oct. 29-Nov. 4, 1991, people reported visions, beautiful experience while "resting in the Spirit" and some healings and conversions were reported". Father Underwood offered a pilgrimage retreat to 47 people from Houston. He gave retreats on Saturday, Nov. 9, 23, Dec. 14 and 21. The format of the retreat was 9:30AM communion service and healing service, 2:30PM-4:00PM presentation on Devotion to the Sacred Heart. Pilgrims brought a sack lunch with San Jose providing coffee and snacks. Reservations were required (223:10/11/1991).

1991, November 17 "While Viewing the Picture of the Sacred Heart", Nov. 5-11, 1991, "See insert for exciting reported messages from Our Blessed Mother and the wonderful healings, extraordinary phenomenon occurring" (223: 17/1/1991).

1991, November 24 "While Viewing the Picture of the Sacred Heart", Nov. 12-18, 1991, the pastor reported on healing of a painful arm and recovery from a stroke (223: 24/11/1991).

1991, Dec. 1 "While Viewing the Picture of the Sacred Heart", Nov. 19-26, 1991, the pastor reported on many conversions to the Catholic faith, several visions and messages and two marriages reconciled (223:01/12/1991).

1991, December 8 "While Viewing the Picture of the Sacred Heart", Nov. 26-Dec. 2, 1991, the pastor reported that, "Many exciting conversions, healings and special blessings are still taking place (223:08/12/1991).

1991, December 15 "While Viewing the Picture of the Sacred Heart", Dec. 3-9, 1991, the pastor reported that, "There has been reported visions and someone was healed (223:15/12/1991).

1991, December 22 "While Viewing the Picture of the Sacred Heart", Dec. 10-16, 1991, the pastor reported that, "There has been various reported visions and messages (223:22/12/1991).

1991, December 29 "While Viewing the Picture of the Sacred Heart", Dec. 107-23, 1991, the pastor reported that, "There has been various reported visions and messages. In the future, only outstanding blessings and healings will be published" (223:29/12/1991).

1992, January 7-13 The pastor reprinted four visions received while viewing the picture and mentioned that there were many others (223:19/01/1992).

1992, January 14-20, 1992 The pastor reported on a conversion by a young lady who viewed the picture (223:26/01/1992). No more visions while viewing the picture were recorded in the Sunday Bulletin after that of January 20.

The Picture attracted pilgrims

A letter to Underwood from Christine Frioni of Houston in January 1992 reported on miraculous events under the title, "First Busload from Houston Share What They Experienced Here (223:05/01/1992). An insert to the Bulletin corrected an American Statesman article of Dec. 29, 1991 and stated that five busloads from Houston will arrive on January 18, a day of a scheduled Pilgrimage Retreat.

Between September 1991 and January 1992, busloads of people began to make pilgrimages to the church. Rev. Underwood, the pastor of San José since 1982, took the pilgrims through a conversion experience during their visit. During the experience, pilgrims received messages such as, "I love you", I want you to spend more time with me", "I want you to listen when you're praying, just be still and quiet". Fr. Underwood said that a few people are led into passive contemplation, a kind of trance (66) (35).

"When the picture was first displayed in January, a lady who was five months pregnant came to pray. Her doctor had found that the baby had a bad heart and both he and her husband wanted her to have an abortion. Even more disturbing was that the baby had not moved for several days. The picture was placed on her womb and the baby immediately started kicking. In May the mother gave birth to a healthy baby boy. She says, "I call my Sacred Heart miracle baby. People remark that there's something special about David. He radiates so much love and joy" (66) (35).

"Another woman, a Baptist with no knowledge of Catholicism, had been suffering for years from anorexia and severe depression. She came to the Blessed Sacrament Chapel after being declared incurable by a local hospital treatment program. Kneeling down, she cried her heart out, then sat down in the front pew. Soon she felt a hand go inside her chest. Frightened, she started to get up, but a hand pushed her back in the pew and a voice said, "Be at peace. I am Jesus. Be at peace." Then He reached inside her chest and grabbed her heart. She could feel all ten fingers massaging her heart, and when He was finished, the depression and anorexia were gone. Her psychiatrist has pronounced her cured and she is now a powerful worker in the church" (66).

Underwood reported that people, especially men, arrive at the building in their cars or trucks and have a conversion experience, sometime with visions. "One young man was watching a football game and the Lord said to him, "Pray". So the guy knelt in front of his television. The Lord said, "No, no, I said pray" so the young man drove to the church and went to the little building. He had a very deep conversion experience and now works with the youth group at the church" (66) (35). Underwood reported that about half of the people who view the picture go into a trance (66).

In January 1992, the picture was moved to a large room of the Old Church (now called Sacred Heart Chapel) to accommodate the crowds. The portable building was moved to the side of the Old Church and renovated as classrooms. "A grotto will be built where the portable building was located in order to utilize the canopy so crowds can pray in front of the grotto. The statue of Our Blessed Mother that was outside under the trees next to the school is being painted by a professional artist and will be the statue of Our Lady of Fatima, white with gold trim. The grotto and renovations to the Old Church for the picture will be paid by donors at no cost to the parish" (223:12/01/1992).

Pilgrimage Retreats

From September 1991 and July 1992, Underwood hosted pilgrimage retreats on Saturdays from 9:00AM to 4:00PM that included a Communion Service, a Healing Service, a talk, free lunch and a visit to the Sacred Heart Picture (35). Mary Jenkins, one of the guardians of the picture, said she saw the picture bleed and said she received messages from Jesus after viewing it. Jenkins said that every day of the week large numbers of people crowd into the trailer on the church grounds to see the picture. On Christmas Eve more than 150 people came to the church during a one-hour period to see the picture. Volunteer minders reported that an average of 300 people come to see the picture each day. Underwood said that five busloads of people from Houston arrived to view the picture on 18 January 1992 (65).

The schedule for viewing was noon to 9:00PM Monday through Friday, 9:00AM to 9:00PM on Saturday and 2:00PM to 9:00PM on Sunday. Mary Jenkins was said to be the most consistent minder. The framed picture was enclosed in a glass case inside the trailer (65). Until February 1992, Mary Jenkins helped greet visitors to see the picture seven days a week. In February, she decided to take some time off. In her place, another volunteer coordinator was found to coordinate the volunteers who each minder the picture for a block of time (223:09/02/1992).

In November 1992, on Thanksgiving Day, the pastor gave thanks for, "The picture of the Sacred Heart, that reportedly bled, where He continues to heal, convert and bless those who view His Picture with faith (223:22/11/1992).

On March 15 1993, Rev. Kirby Garner, the new pastor, moved into the rectory at San José. He would be replacing Underwood as the parish administrator after Easter (223:14/03/1993). When Underwood delivered his farewell address to the parish, he said, "Also, thank you for the wonderful reception, we had here at San José last Sunday, Your wishes by sending me with your blessings and the Precious Sacred Heart of Jesus Picture will bring many answered prayers."

"As you already know, I will most likely be traveling throughout Houston and other parts of the Country giving parish renewals. As the Precious Sacred Jesus picture travels with me from parish (to parish), many, we pray, will be blessed. My departure from San Jose Parish will be the week of April 12th. The Precious Sacred Heart of Jesus picture will not be available for viewing after April 12th because the Precious Picture will most likely be traveling with me throughout the Houston area" (223:11/04/1993).

Underwood returned to San José Church on Saturday October 16 to present a Renewal (223:26/09/1993). At some point, the miraculous photo was returned to San Jose Parish and until the Religious Articles Store closed in early 2018, the picture or a copy hung outside of the entrance to the store in the foyer of the old church. Some say that the framed picture at the entrance to the store was a copy of the original, others that it is the orginal. 



Mother's Day/Father's Day

In 1914, US President Woodrow Wilson signed a proclamation designating the second Sunday in May as a national holiday called Mother's Day. Its purpose is to honor the mother of the family and their influence on society. It is a secular holiday.

Father's Day was traditionally celebrated on March 19, the feast day of St. Joseph, the Husband of Mary. Attempts began around 1908 to celebrate a Father's Day in June but it was not until 1972 that the third Sunday in June was designated a national holiday in the United States.

Although Mother's Day and Father's Day are secular holidays, efforts were made incorporate them into the liturgical calendar. This was done by offering a Novena of Masses for mothers beginning on Mother's Day and a Novena of Masses for fathers beginning on Father's Day. This became quite popular and today many Catholic organizations and religious houses offer this service.

During a Novena, the daily Mass is said for all mothers or fathers who requested the Mass by filling out cards (223:25/06/1989). At San Jose, Mother's Day and Father's Day cards were available after Mass for two weeks prior to the holiday (223:27/04/1986) (223:08/06/1986) (223:03/05/1987) (223:14/06/1987) (223:28/06/1987) (223:01/05/1988) (223:30/04/89). Of course, most requests were not made by the parents themselves but rather by their children.

In the late 1980s, the suggested donation for the cards was $2.00 each (223: 01/05/1988) (223:05/06/1988) (223:30/04/89) (223:11/06/1989). The $2.00 was actually an offering to support the priest saying the Mass. It is against Catholic Church teaching to purchase a Mass.

In 1989, The Mother's Day Novena began Sunday May 14 and ended nine days later on Monday May 22 (223:21/05/89). For fathers, the Novena began on June 18 and ended on June 26 (223:25/06/1989).

The Ladies Auxiliary of the Catholic War Veterans Post sold Spiritual Bouquet Cards for Mother's Day (223:18/05/1986) and Father's Day (223:28/06/1987). A spiritual bouquet is a card with a list of prayers or devotions that the giver of the card offers for the recipient. It is a gift of prayer. As with Novena cards, many organizations and religious houses offer these cards.

In 1986 and 1988, the parish sponsored a parish dance on Mother's Day (223: 18/05/1986). The profits from parish dances were counted as income for the church. In 1986, the Mother's Day Dance raised $1,491 (223:25/05/1986). In 1988, Gilbert Alba and the Super City provided the music for a Mother's Day Dance that was also sponsored by the parish (223:01/05/1988).

The most appropriate flower for Mother's Day is a pink carnation, symbolizing a mother's undying love although the official Mother's Day flower is a red carnation. On Mother's Day in 1988, the San Jose Young Adults sold carnations after every Mass in front of the parish hall (except the 7:00PM Mass) (223:01/05/1988).

In 1990, Ray Cortéz and the 12:30 Choir offered to sing Mañanitas from door to door for Mother's Day beginning at 10PM on May 12 until Sunday, April 13 (223:22/04/1990). The choir offered this service on many Mother's Days between 1978 and 1993. That year, Mother's Day Novena Cards along with balloons, buttons and carnations were all on sale starting Saturday, May 5 (223:29/04/1990). The suggested donation was $3 for the Novena cards (223:03/06/1990).

In 1991, Mother's Day Novena Cards were on sale in the foyer for $3 and confirmation students sold carnations on Mother's Day after all morning Masses (223:05/05/1991). The Novena Cards for both Mother's and Father's Day were offered for sale again in May or June 1992 and 1993 (223:21/06/1992) (223:25/04/1993). In May 1992, the annual May crowning of Our Blessed Mother took place from 6:00PM to 7:00PM on May 11 to 15, Monday through Friday. The adults recited the Rosary and sang hymns of praise as the children brought flowers to the altar for Mother Mary (223:10/05/1992).

In 1993, a list of flower donors and those memorized appeared in the Sunday Bulletin under, "Additional Flower Donated for Mother's Day". The donors were Candalaria Carmona, Virginia Contretas, Felicita Ruiz, Jesus Gutierrez, Guadalupe Petina, Robert Menchaca, Joe Ramos and Richard Botello (223:16/05/1993).



Bingo was illegal in Texas until 1981. Despite this, Bingo and other party games were a common feature of Catholic social life in Texas and a source of funds for San Jose parish from the 1940s until the State of Texas began enforcing the law on bingo in 1977. In 1945, a group of young women who were married to US Army soldiers hosted bunco parties at 25 cents a game as a benefit for the church. These games were held in a barracks at Live Oak and South Second Streets. Their profits rarely exceeded $25 per night (210).

In the 1950s, when Joe Uriegas, Ramon de Leon and Pete Rivera were the Bingo Chairmen, the same group of young women took care of the kitchen for the bingo games. They prepared and sold pork roast tacos at the games. The price was three tacos for one dollar. They also sold coffee, pastries, popcorn and sodas (210). The Socios sponsored a Bingo game in the parish hall at least once every two weeks.

Both the parish and individuals hosted party games to raise money. Brother Dunn reported that in May 1961, Frank Hipolito and his family opened their home for a party game to help the children of the school raise funds to purchase a projector (Dunn's History). In 1960 and 1961, the parish sponsored party games on Sunday nights. The games began at 7:30PM on Sunday night during the winter and at 8:00PM in the summer. The games were suspended for Lent. The Sunday Bulletin announced the amount of numbers prior to each game, e.g. "50 numbers" (223:04/02/61).

Profits from weekly bingo game ranged from one-half to two-thirds of the Sunday Collection in the early 1960s. For example, in June 1961 profits for the Bingo game on June 18 were $125 while the Sunday Collection was $290.50. Profits from bingo on June 25 were $282.25 while the Sunday Collection was $402. On July 2 the profit from Bingo was $189.50 and the Sunday Collection was $406 (223:07/09/61). In February 1962, the pastor announced that, in 1962, the bingo party games brought in over $2,000 (223:02/11/62) and accounted for one-third of the income of the parish. Clearly, bingo was an important source of funds for the parish. The pastor was aware that the games were illegal and he always referred to them as "party games".

The pastor launched a campaign to increase the Sunday Collections. By October 1962, he was able to tell the Socios that if they were so disposed, they could stop hosting the party games. They replied that they preferred to continue with the biweekly games because they understood how critical the money was to the parish (223:10/21/62).

PTA and the Socios ran Bingo games

In November 1962, there were sometimes two bingos games every week. The Socios ran one game, at 7:30PM on the first and third Sunday of each month, for the benefit of the parish. The other game, at 8:00PM every Wednesday, was run by the PTA for the benefit of the school (223:11/18/62). The Bingo games run by the Socios netted $2,633 during 1962 (223:12/23/62). Most gamers who attended the games were not San José parishioners (223:02/17/63). Many were African-American women from the nearby Brackenridge neighborhood.

In February 1963, the pastor noted in the Sunday Bulletin that twice a month the forty-five members of the Society helped with the 7:30PM Sunday Bingo. At 6:30PM the Hall was ready for the games to start and, at the close, the Socios needed 20 minutes to fix the Cafeteria so it was ready for the next school day (223:02/03/63).

Fr. Houser did not complain about the parish's reliance on revenue from the party games. He wrote, in the Sunday Bulletin, "We try to urge you to support all San José affairs, whether meetings, services of mere Devotion, fiestas, sales of various things. The Party Games alone on two Sundays of each month brought in $2,633. We thank those men for their devoted work. We encourage others to join them and help and we invite all of San José to support all these good things of the spiritual family of San Jose" (223; 23/12/1962).

In September 1963, the pastor decided that the income from the Wednesday 8:00PM Bingo would go towards a fund for enlarging the parish hall (223:09/15/63). A new room was added to the old barracks that was being used as the parish hall and income from the Wednesday night party games was used to help pay for the new room (223:10/06/63). The new room was 70 feet long and 12 feet wide and cost $2,457. The total income from the Wednesday Party Games since its inception one year before was $4,790 (223:11/02/63). During 1963, the Socios managed party games on the 1st and 3rd Sunday at 8:00PM and earned $4,006.00 for the church (223:12/22/63) (223:08/01/65).

The profits were used to pay the church debt

Much of the fundraising effort of the parish was driven by the need to pay the church debt. In 1964, the Socios sponsored party games every Sunday evening to raise money to pay the church debt. The profits from the 8:00PM Wednesday Bingo were for a new school building (223:03/01/64). After the parish had sufficient funds to make the next payment on the debt, the pastor announced that, "The Party Games have finished for the year. We may continue to work, but not so few so hard. Let's have more Social Fiestas, less for money, more for entertainment" (223:10/25/64). Instead of resting, the Socios agreed to sponsor the party games on Wednesday that were previously sponsored by the PTA (223:08/08/65). Beginning in August 1965, the Wednesday party games were sponsored by the Socios (223:03/20/66) with the profit dedicated to paying the school debt (223:12/05/65).

In 1967, the Socios were managing both the Wednesday 8:00PM and Sunday 8:00PM Bingo games. All the returns were used to help the parish (223:11/26/67). The men who worked on the Wednesday night bingo games paid $3,000 on the parish debt during the week of July 2 (223:07/09/67) (223:08/13/67). Two groups of men, both comprised of members (Socios) of the Society of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, ran bingo games but on different nights (223:11/12/67). The two groups competed with each other to see which group could attract the largest crowd and raise the most revenue. The rivalry between the two groups of men was intense and participants can still remember specific incidents in the rivalry fifty years later.

During 1967, income from the bingo was $3,585.24 and the Socios who managed the games donated another $3,000 to the school fund (223:01/21/68). When their income from bingo declined, the men found other ways to increase their profits. In 1968, the Socios sold barbeque at the Sunday bingo. The first week in February, they raised $192.10 from barbeque, $143.15 from a mariachi and $83.75 from bingo (223:02/11/68). The Socios also ran a Bingo game during the May 5, 1968 Bazaar at the City Auditorium and raised $535 (223:05/12/68). The weekly Bingo games on Sunday and Wednesday nights at 8:00PM continued through 1968 (223:05/19/68) (223:01/14/68).

The two weekly Bingo games at the San José parish hall were not the only games in town. Other churches also hosted Bingo games. Other groups within San Jose parish hosted games as well. In the spring of 1968, the women of the parish had two special bingo games at 8:00PM Friday in the Hall to raise seed money for the May 5 parish bazaar (223:03/10/68). That year, José Rocha of the Parish Council stated the obvious when he said that the profits from the bingos were paying the debt on the school (213).

Three Bingo game nights each week

In October 1968, the San Jose school PTA announced that a Bingo game on Friday would begin in November. The games were to benefit the school. Pete Casarez of the Parish Council questioned if the parish could handle another weekly bingo night. Henry Guerrero said that, "as long as we don't interfere with another church's bingo, we should have the Friday bingo" and the Parish Council approved the new bingo games (213). The Wednesday and Sunday night Bingo games were to continue as before. On November 18, the PTA bingo reported a profit of $116.65 from their first game (213).

During the eleven-month period of January to November 1968, the Sunday and Wednesday Bingo profits were $7,000 (213). The Wednesday, Friday and Sunday bingo games earned enough money to pay the bi-annual principal and interest on the school debt. The pastor reported that, "$1,105.00 will be paid to the Czech Catholic Union this month to help us with the debt". He gave thanks to the, "bingo crew" (223:12/15/68). The Czech Catholic Union held the note on the church.

During 1969, there were Bingo games at 8:00PM on Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, all to benefit the school (223: 01/05/69) (223:04/27/69). The pastor reported in the Sunday Bulletin that the Socios and the PTA had raised large sums of money to help with the expenses of the school. He said that the Socios contributed $12,465.12 from their bingo games. The yearly receipts of the church during 1968 were $50,619.60 (223: 02/02/69). Income from two of the three weekly Bingo games was equivalent to 20% of entire income of the parish including the Sunday Collection and the income from the annual church bazaar.

In June 1969, Frank Castruita reported to the parish council that Bingo was going well but the people were requesting to go outside because of the heat in the building. The Bingo game is still being held in an old barrack building that had been converted into the parish hall (213). The Bingo game was moved to a classroom in the school building because the old Hall was too hot and crowded (223:07/20/69).

The games were moved to the Community Center in 1969

In June 1968, the Parish Council set in motion plans to build a new parish hall. The new hall was scheduled to be ready in September 1969 and the persons who ran the Bingo met to plan the transition to the new space (223:09/14/69). They decided to hire Mrs. Virginia Miriam to cook on bingo nights and to buy an electric board and 800 plastic cards. The intention was to standardize the games. Henry Guerrero was in charge (213).

On Sunday, October 12, 1969, a bingo game was held in the new San Jose Community Center for the first time (223:10/05/69). There were three Bingo games each week at the Community Center. The earnings were: Friday bingo $433, Sunday bingo $356 (213). The PTA sponsored another bingo on Monday nights (sometimes earning $477) (213). All workers from all three Bingo games met in the new hall in November to discuss the program (223:11/16/69). As in result, in January 1970 the Socios announced that they were seeking helpers for three Bingo games on Monday, Wednesday and Fridays at the hall at 8:00PM (223:01/11/70).

By April 1970, the three Bingo nights were the parish's biggest source of income (213). It was a struggle to find enough men to manage the games. In February, the parish hosted a dinner at Las Casuelas restaurant for all the men who helped at the Bingo and their wives as an incentive and to recognize their work (223:02/15/70). During the spring and summer, Mr. Estrada, the President of the Socios, agreed to seek more volunteers for the Bingo games (213) and Mr. Joe Rocha and Mr. Albert Mercado announced that they were looking for anyone willing to help with the three Bingo nights (223:06/21/70).

During 1970, the Socios ran the Bingo games on Monday and Wednesday nights. They earned $14,383.91. Jose Rocha and Gonzalo Reyna ran the Monday and Wednesday night Bingo (223:06/06/71). The PTA ran the Bingo games on Friday nights. David Laurel led the PTA team that ran the Friday night Bingo (223:06/06/71). The PTA bingo earned $9,638.34. The money from the Socios was used to pay the interest and principal on first installment of the notes for the school and the new hall that totaled $13,992.50 (223:01/03/71).

In June 1971, the income from bingo exceeded the Sunday Collection. Income from Monday night Bingo in May was $1,046. Income from Wednesday night Bingo game was $1,325 and income from Friday night Bingo game was $1,046. During the month, the Bingo games raised a total of $3,417. By comparison, the five Sunday Collections for May totaled $2,617 (223:06/06/71). The money from the Monday and Wednesday night bingos paid the principle and interest on the school and the Community Center debts. Income from the Friday night Bingo games, managed by the PTA, was spent on school books and utilities. An additional $4,000 from the Monday and Wednesday bingo games was used for general expenses of the parish (223: 13/02/72).

Bingo games continued on the same schedule until 1975 (223:05/01/75). At the end of 1973, the bingo workers were Joe Rocha, Gonzalo Reyna, Pete Tamayo, Ray and Aggie Castro (249:11/11/73). Friday Night Bingo helpers were Gonzalo Riojas, Raymund Samilpa, Fidencio Aguilar, Joe Galvan, Cruz Vasquez, Jeronimo Estrada and Jimi Tamayo (249: 18/11/73) (223: 08/04/73) (249: 02/12/73). By 1975, the Guadalupanas were running the kitchen on Bingo nights. They appealed for donations of cake mixes, dry beans, rice, coffee, sugar and cheese for use in the Bingo kitchen (223:19/10/75).

The Socios also managed the bingo game at the annual spring bazaar. In 1976, the bingo games run by the Socios had the largest net profit ($583) of any booth at the spring bazaar (223:09/05/76). The parish had become increasingly reliant on income from the weekly Bingo games. Until October 1977, the primary concern was recruiting enough volunteers to run the games. The parish sponsored an annual dinner for the workers to show its appreciation (223:16/01/72) but the pastor relied on the Socios, the Guadalupanas and the PTA to provide the manpower needed to keep the games going.

Madalyn Murray O'Hair stopped the games

On Wednesday, October 26, 1977, a lawyer named Madalyn Murray O'Hair and her companion, Sam Miller, entered the San José Community Center and disrupted the Wednesday night Bingo game. Madalyn O'Hair was an atheist who arrived in Austin in 1965. Her mission in life was to limit the influence of religion in public life. She became aware that Austin churches were holding illegal Bingo games and chose the San José Wednesday night Bingo game of October 26, 1977 to begin a campaign against the practice.

O'Hair told the press that after the police ignored her complaints concerning the illegal bingo games, she decided to take the law into her own hand and "make some citizen's arrests". For this reason, she entered the San José Community Center while the bingo game was in progress. Ray Martinez, who was helping with the games that night, said she rushed in, "grabbing Bingo cards, pushing and shaving people, (while) a man who was with her (Sam Miller) started punching people". O'Hair said she did not hit anyone at the Bingo game but said she was covered in bruises from blows that she received while being ejected from the hall (page 256). O'Hair and Miller blamed the confrontation on the people in the church hall. Ray and other men at the game pushed O'Hair and her companion out of the Community Center and called the Austin police (251, page 254).

O'Hair also complained that a policewoman shouted at her: "You are an atheist troublemaker" (251). O'Hair filed a federal law suit seeking punitive damages against State and County officials for not enforcing antigambling laws. In June 1978, a U.S. District Judge dismissed the case, saying O'Hair had no standing to bring the action because she had not been "injured in any way by any actions or omissions by the defendants" (251, page 255).

A week after disrupting the Bingo game at San José, Mrs. O'Hair was arrested for disrupting the opening prayer at a meeting of the Austin City Council. She then sued the Mayor and city council to stop the practice of opening their meeting with prayer (page 255). This suit too was unsuccessful. However, as a result of her complaint, officials became enforcing the legal prohibition on Bingo games and the party games at San José Church came to an end.

The Sunday Bulletin of May 7, 1981 announced that Bingo remained illegal in Texas because neither of the enabling bills passed both the House and the Senate during the 67th Legislature (223:05/07/1981). However, the State began issuing bingo licenses in 1982. For a short time in the fall of 1982, the Ladies Auxiliary of the Catholic War Veterans managed a Wednesday Bingo at the Community Center at 7PM (223:08/08/82). San José Parish reported no income from Bingo games in 1982 (223:05/12/82). The new rules restricted how Bingo profits could be spent and, perhaps for this reason, profits from the Bingo games were used for academic scholarships.

In 1983, the two main sources of income for the parish other than the Sunday Collection was breakfast and dinner income. The Collection was around $2,600 per week with income from breakfast around $143 and income from dinner about $133 per week (223:12/06/83).

In the Sunday Bulletin of January 20, 1985 the pastor announced that, "Raffles are not permitted because they are illegal. All parish organizations, dances, choirs and individuals are asked to refrain from any raffles" (223:20/01/1985). There was no mention of bingo in the Sunday Bulletins during 1986. It appears that bingo disappeared from San José Parish until the Bingo Enabling Act passed the 76th Legislature in 1999. The Jamaica Committee held a Bingo on July 1993 but it was not announced in the Sunday Bulletin (223:11/07/1993).

Bingo began again in 1999

After 1999, San José Parish began to host Bingo games in the San José Community Center on a regular basis under a license from the Texas Lottery Commission. Bingo games are held on one Friday evening every two months with additional games scheduled prior to Thanksgiving and Christmas. The large crowds that the games attracted during the 1970s never returned and income from the games remains insignificant. Because of strict licensing requirements, church employees who are licensed to do so run the games. Volunteers manage a limited food service for the gamers. Because the law severely restricts how the proceeds can be used, the income from the Bingo games is dedicated to a scholarship fund for college students who are registered in the parish.                         


La Pastorela

La pastorela, or shepherd's play, is a drama that recreates the story of the shepherds who followed the Star of Bethlehem to find the Christ Child. As the shepherd's travel to the stable where the baby Jesus is born, the Devil (sometimes called Luzbel) and his cohorts attempt to stop or delay them. Finally, the Angel Michael comes to the shepherd's aid, kills the Devil and allows the shepherds to reach their destination. La Pastorela was originally a religious play. In modern Mexico, la pastorela has evolved into a comedy with the script and songs changing each year to reflect current conditions and to make fun of politicians and the powerful.

Mary Louse Calderon Huerta, who grew up in San Jose Parish, wrote, "During the Christmas season (in the 1940s), the parishioners would have pastorelas, plays where they would act out stories between good and evil. My mother and father would work late at night designing, cutting material and sewing the costumes for the pastorela. My father (Luis Z. Calderon) had books that would tell him how to put on a pastorela and I remember how important it was to him to do everything by the book. My father would have everyone involved in the play come and practice until the pastorela was just right. I remember seeing people dressed as angels, shepherds, Jesus and also the Devil. I remember my uncle Estanelo (Estanislado) Calderon would dance the Carbonero, a dance of a hobo, as part of the pastorela. Families would bring food, Mom would bake bread and it was a fest for all to enjoy" (221).

In Mexico, the drama can last from seven to ten hours but in December 1952 the show at San José took five hours to perform. A break was called after three hours to allow the pastor to perform a service at midnight. After the service, the cast and audience returned to continue for two hours more (123).

In December 23, 1953, Simon Ybarra was the director of the cast of volunteers who performed the Pastorela. The show was a short version and was scheduled to last three hours beginning at 7:30PM on Sunday night (123).

On Sunday, December 30, 1962, the Pastorela was presented in the San José Parish Hall beginning at 7:30PM. As usual, the performers had spent many weeks in preparation. This Pastorela was a fundraiser and the audience paid an entry fee. The admission fee was 35 cents for adults and 15 cents for children (223:12/30/62).

Community theatre groups present the Pastorela in Austin each year but the play is no longer performed at San José Church. In December 1988, San José Church was asked to provide actors for a play to be performed at the Pan American Hillside. Practice took place on December 10 and the show was presented on December 17. This play was more likely a reenactment of a traditional Mexican posada instead of a pastorela. The actors from San José represented one of the "Inns" in the play (223:11/12/1988).

In recent years, performances at San José consist of a crèche (a manger scene) with live actors and a brief performance depicting the arrival of the Magi.




Parishioners from San José Church traditionally made pilgrimages to shrines in San Juan, Texas and Mexico City. Pilgrimages to the shrine in San Juan occur throughout the year. Pilgrimages to the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City always coincide with the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe on December 12.

The first shrine in San Juan, Texas was built in 1954 to house a copy of a miraculous image of Our Lady of San Juan del Valle. The original is kept in the town of San Juan de los Lagos near Guadalajara, Mexico. The Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City is near the site where Our Lady of Guadalupe is believed to have appeared to Juan Diego Cuauhtlatoatzin on December 9 through 12, 1531. Both shrines attract large numbers of pilgrims.


It is not known when Guadalupanas from San José Church began making pilgrimages to San Juan, Texas and Mexico City. The first mention of a pilgrimage appears in the San Jose Sunday Bulletin of November 4, 1962 but, by all indications, the pilgrimage was already a well-established tradition. The announcement in the Sunday Bulletin was for a Bingo to raise money for the trip to Mexico City. At that time, fifteen persons, most of whom were Guadalupanas or Socios, had signed up for the trip (223:11/04/62).

Twenty-five parishioners from San José Parish and "four from town" made the trip in 1962 (223:11/18/62). The Pastor instructed the pilgrims to get the necessary vaccinations and a Tourist Card from the Mexican Consul. The pilgrims left in a chartered Greyhound bus on Sunday morning and returned on Saturday afternoon. The round trip ticket cost $30.60 (223:11/25/62) (223:12/02/62).


In October, the pastor announced, "We have 33 names for the Pilgrimage to Mexico. There is room for six more. One needs proof of vaccination in a letter dated by the doctor, a Tourist Permit from the Mexican Consul and a round trip ticket from Greyhound Bus Company. We leave San José on December 8 and return on December 14" (223:10/18/1964).

In November, he wrote, "There is room for 16 more to fill two buses. If we do not get enough to fill two buses, the daily bus for Mexico City leaves soon after our departure and gets in Mexico 2 hours after our arrival (223:11/08/64). We now have 42 names, if we get 17 more names they will give us two buses." The Sunday Bulletin listed the names of people going on the pilgrimage (223:11/01/64). On December 6, the pastor announced that one bus would make the trip (223:12/06/64).


In July, Rev. Houser said he would do what he could to have a pilgrimage in December to Mexico City. He said, "(The Blessed Mother) traveled on pilgrimage each year with St. John to visit the places made sacred by the life and death of Her Son" (223:07/18/65). In September, he announced, "16 in all now (for pilgrimage to Mexico)". There is room for 39 persons" (223:09/12/65).

"We hope to leave San José December 8 and return December 14 with four nights in Mexico. Get the Vaccination card stamped at 1313 Sabine Street, a Tourist Permit from Consul and a round-trip ticket from Greyhound" (223:11/07/65). The trip lasted 22 hours (223:12/05/65). Fr. Houser said, "About a million persons entered the Basilica in 2 days. As usual, the pilgrims from San José were treated as honored guests" (223:12/19/65). The pilgrims from San José always stayed in the Madero Hotel, which was four blocks from the Basilica (223:11/22/64).


Rev. Houser began announcing the Pilgrimage in the Sunday Bulletin in September. On September 25 he listed the names of eleven persons who had already signed up to go (223:09/25/66). The bus left at 9:00AM on December 7 and returned on 7:00AM on December 14 (223:12/04/66).


In August, Rev. John Haley and Rev. Mike Mikan began to seek persons interested in making the December trip to the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico. (223:08/20/67). However, the Guadalupanas decided to forego the annual pilgrimage and to sponsor a three-day mission at San José Church with Rev. Daniel Villanueva in lieu of the trip to Mexico. The program of the mission was as follows. Sunday, Dec. 10-Rosary, Sermon and Benediction at 7:00PM; Monday, Dec. 11- 6:15AM Mass and Sermon, 6:30PM practice singing hymns of our Lady; 7:00PM Rosary, Sermon and Benediction; Tuesday, Dec. 12- 6:15AM Mass and sermon; 7:00PM Rosary, Sermon and Benediction; 8:00PM Parish social in Hall with cakes and cookies served by the Guadalupanas (223:12/10/67).


In March, the church sponsored a bus trip for 40 persons to San Juan, Texas. The cost was $5 for the round trip and $1.50 for a double room Saturday night at the hotel on the grounds of the Shrine (223:02/25/68). The trips to San Juan always left on Saturday and returned on Sunday. The journey took six hours by bus.

The Sunday Bulletin of December 1, 1968 listed 40 persons who signed up to go to Mexico City. The bus left Saturday, December 7 at 9:00AM. The cost was $37.10 for the roundtrip ticket on a Greyhound Bus. Fr. Mike Mikan and Brother Duane Boudreaux accompanied the pilgrims (223:12/01/68).


The trip to Mexico City was announced in the Sunday Bulletin of September 14 and was sold out by the middle of October (223:09/14/69) (223:10/19/69).


In April, the parish sponsored a bus trip to San Juan to leave 7:00AM Saturday and return Sunday 8:00PM. Mrs. Celia Guerra was in charge. The cost was $2 for a hotel room and $5 for the bus (223:04/12/70) (223:04/19/70). 43 persons made the April pilgrimage (223:04/26/70).

In July, the Guadalupanas planned a pilgrimage to San Juan for forty persons. The hotel cost $3 per person and the bus $7.50. The bus was sold out (223:09/05/70). The trip was rescheduled twice because of bad weather (223: 01/26/70) (223:08/02/70) (223:09/13/70).

Those persons who were interested in making the trip to Mexico in December were advised to contact the parish priests (223:10/11/70). The cost in the Greyhound bus had increased to $42. Shared rooms at Hotel Madero cost $2.50 per day per person (223:11/08/70). The bus was originally scheduled to leave on December 8 but this was changed to December 7 so it would arrive in Mexico for the Virgin's Feast Day on December 8. The pilgrims remain in Mexico City through the feast of December 12, coming back on the 13th and arriving at San Jose on the following morning (223:10/18/70) (223:11/08/70).

There was room for 40 persons (223:11/15/70). The bus was filled by extending invitations to parishioners at Guadalupe, Cristo Rey and St. Julia Catholic Churches (223:11/08/70) (223:11/29/70). The pastor called a meeting in the San José School for those going on the bus (223:12/06/70).


37 persons signed up for the trip to Mexico. Each person deposited $20 with the church office to reserve their seat. Plans were made to leave Dec. 7 in the morning and return Tuesday, Dec. 14. The round-trip bus ride cost $45 and the hotel room cost 30 Pesos or $2.50 per day for six nights (223: 14/11/71). Almost all of those making the trip were parishioners of San José and many had made the trip before. Fr. John Haley was among the pilgrims (223: 05/12/71).

1972 - 1975

The schedule for the trip to the Basilica in Mexico remained the same for the next several years. The bus left on December 7 and returned on December 14. A $20 or $25 deposit was required to reserve a seat (223: 10/09/72) (249: 23/09/73) (250: 12/09/74). Usually the parish chartered one 37-passenger bus. The bus was usually sold out by November but individuals could travel separately and stay with the group at the Madero Hotel near the Basilica (223: 12/11/72). In 1974 the church chartered two buses. The cost of the bus increased each year and rose from $45 in 1972 to $57 in 1974 and $62 in 1975 (223:14/11/71) (250:01/12/74) (223:28/09/75).

1976 - 1980

The parish continued to sponsor trips to the Shrine of Our Lady of San Juan del Valle in San Juan, Texas. Sometimes the youth groups from San Jose and Dolores parishes would travel together (223:06/06/76). Transportation was in a chartered bus with sitting room for 37 or 40 persons and cost $9 per person (223:06/06/76). The pilgrims left Austin on Saturday morning and returned on Sunday evening. They stayed in a small, inexpensive hotel located on the grounds of the Shrine.

There was no mention of the pilgrimages to Mexico City in the Sunday Bulletins of 1976 and 1977 but there is no reason to believe that the pilgrimages stopped. The new basilica in Mexico City was scheduled for completion on October 1976 and Bishop Flores of San Antonio appealed for funds to complete it (223:04/07/76). The Sunday Bulletin of October 8, 1978 announced, "It is time to buy our tickets to Mexico City" (223:08/10/78). The price was $100 (money order only, no checks or no cash) (223:22/10/78). By Nov. 19 the bus was full and there was waiting list (223:19/11/78).


The parish stopped chartering a bus for the trip to Mexico City in either 1980 or 1981. This did not stop San Jose parishioners from making the trip on their own. In July 1981, the Sunday Bulletin announced a pilgrimage to the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe from October 10 to 14 sponsored by Confia Tours by bus or air (223:19/07/1981). Radio Station KMXX (Radio Alegria) sponsored a bus trip with the same itinerary (223:13/09/1981).

Holidays 'N' Travel, at 714 Brazos Street in Austin, advertised a Pilgrimage to the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City from Dec. 8- 14 to leave from San Antonio Airport. The cost was $284 per person (223:11/10/1981). Details of the trip were published in the Sunday Bulletin (223:18/10/1981).


The parish continued to sponsor pilgrimages to the Shrine in San Juan, Texas. After the purchase of a church bus in August 1984, trips were made with greater frequency. Two adults, usually a married couple, accompanied the pilgrims as driver and chaperone. The cost was $35 for adults (including the hotel room) and $20 for children 14 and under (223: 06/01/1985). The trips were always on Saturday and Sunday. Pilgrimages to San Juan were made every month during 1984 and 1985 and every month of the school year in 1986 (223:26/01/1986) (223:16/11/1986). The trips became less frequent in 1987 and 1988 (223:22/03/1987) (223:26/04/1987) (223:01/11/1987) (223:03/04/1988) (223:23/10/1988) probably because more parishioners owned cars and went in their own vehicle. The church bus was also used for trips to San Antonio and Inks Lake (223:14/10/84) (223; 23/03/1986). The parish even sponsored a trip to Nuevo Laredo to do Christmas shopping reflecting, perhaps, a shift of attention from the Christ Child to the Gifts of the Magi (223:14/12/1986).

During 1989, only three trips to San Juan were scheduled. The third included a side-trip to Mexico to purchase Christmas gifts (223:30/04/89) (223:05/11/1989) (223:03/12/1989). In 1990 and 1991, three trips were made each year (223:18/02/1990) (223:22/04/1990) (223:14/10/1990) (223:24/03/1991) (223:07/04/1991) (223:05/26/1991). In 1992 two trips were made in the school bus to San Juan. The price of the trip increased by $5 on the first trip but returned to the old prices of $35 per adult and $20 per child for the last trip in December 1992 (223:27/10/1991) (223:08/03/1992) (223:01/11/1992).

In 1992, a new form of pilgrimage made its appearance in the parish. Brother Kenny at Cristo Rey was taking applications for a Franciscan Pilgrimage to Rome in March 1993. The cost was $1,900 (223:18/10/1992).

In 2018, the trip to Our Lady of San Juan National Shrine was made once annually and cost $90 per person for twin accommodations at Pilgrim House in San Juan. The bus left the church parking lot at 5:00AM on Saturday and returned to San Jose at 8:00PM. The pastor or the Associate Pastor accompanied the pilgrims (223:25/03/2018).



Las Posadas

A posada is the reenactment of the journey of Joseph and Mary (los peregrinos) from Nazareth in Galilee to Bethlehem in Judea as described in the 2nd chapter of the Gospel of Luke. The custom originated in Catholic Spain and was introduced into Mexico in the 15th Century.

Las Posadas are a reenactment of the nine-day journey of Joseph and Mary from their native village to Bethlehem. The reenactment begins on December 15 or 16 and concludes on December 23 or 24. In Spanish, an event spanning nine days is called "una novena" and the posadas are sometimes called La Novena.

The participants who are enacting the part of the pilgrims (los peregrinos) gather at the church and walk to four different homes in the neighborhood. Two children represent Mary and Joseph who are looking for a place to stay for the night. The first three houses refuse entry to the participants and the fourth complies with their request. At the last house, the owners (los hosteleros) lets the participants inside his home and serves them refreshments (usually Mexican pastries and cocoa or chocolate milk).

The participants who are enacting the part of the pilgrims (los peregrinos) recite four of the five mysteries of the Rosary between the starting point and the last house. Spanish-language songs are also sung along the way. Guitarists and other musicians usually accompany the group.

At each house, the participants sing a song called "Villancico para pedir posada" or "Canto para pedir posada". The pilgrims sing one verse and the householders respond. The words of the song that is sung at the fourth and last house are as follows.

(Los peregrinos) En nombre del cielo os pido posada, pues no puede andar mi esposa amada.

(Los hosteleros) Aquí no es mesón, sigan adelante. Yo no puedo abrir, no sea algún tunante.

(Los peregrinos) No seas inhumano, den nos caridad, que el Dios de los cielos te lo premiará.

(Los hosteleros) Ya se pueden ir y no molestar porque si me enfado los voy a apalear.

(Los peregrinos) Venimos rendidos desde Nazaret. Yo soy carpintero de nombre José.

(Los hosteleros) No me importa el nombre, déjenme dormir, pues yo ya les digo que no hemos de abrir.

(Los peregrinos) Posada le pido, amado casero, pues madre va a ser, la reina del cielo.

(Los hosteleros) Pues si es una reina, quien lo solicita, cómo es que de noche anda tan solita?

(Los peregrinos) Mi esposa es María, es Reina del Cielo y madre va a ser del Divino Verbo.

(Los hosteleros) Eres tu José? Tu esposa es María? Entre, peregrinos, no los conocía.

(Los peregrinos) Dios pague señores nuestra caridad y os colme el cielo de felicidad.

(Todos) Dichosa la casa que abriga este día a la virgin pura la Hermosa María. Entren Santos Peregrinos, reciban este rincón, que aunque es pobre la morada, os la doy de corazón.

Posadas at San José Church


It is not known when the first Christmas Posada took place in South Austin. The event is not connected to a parish but is typically organized by neighbors or related families who lived near each other. The first dated announcement of the event at San José Church appeared on December 18, 1960, when the San José Sunday Bulletin invited everyone to the Posadas every night at 7:00PM (223:12/18/60). The event was discontinued after a few years.


Beginning in 1971, Buddy Ruiz, Tim Torres, Gonzalo Barrientos and John Moore of San José parish attempted to revive the tradition of Las Posadas. That year, the guitarists were Fidencio Aguilar, Ray Cortéz and Manuel Castillo. The Sunday Bulletin described this Posada in great detail.

In 1971, San José Church sponsored Las Posadas that began on December 15 at 7:30PM and lasted for nine days. The schedule was announced in the December 5 Sunday Bulletin. The bulletin listed the householder's name and the address of each of the four residences that were visited each of the nine nights. The schedule was:

Wednesday, Dec. 15: Edward Esquivel, 2601 S. 5th St.; Arturo Estrada, 2707 S. 5th St.; Lucas Carrillo, 3009 S. 5th St.; Tim Torres, 900 Terrel Hill

Thursday, Dec. 16: Gene Casarez, 810 W. Oltorf; James Briones, 1000 W. Oltorf; Joe Sanchez, 907 W. Live Oak St.; Lorenzo Hernandez, 2406 S. 4th St.

Friday, Dec. 17: Edmundo Zavala, 2310 S. 3rd St.; Pete Castillo, 2008 S. 3rd St.; Mrs. Angelina Guerrero, 907 W. Johanna St.; Tom Longoria, 714 W. Johanna St.

Saturday, Dec. 18: Simon Castillo, 3106 Fontana Dr.; Lee Cervantes, 3107 Fontana Dr.; Frank Gonzales, 506 South Park Dr.; Joe Sanchez, 510 Lightsey Ave.

Sunday, Dec. 19: Matt Martinez, 2612 S. 2nd St.; Florencio Soliz, 2804 Oak Crest Ave.; Reyes Cortez, 2803 Oak Crest Ave.; Mrs. Celia Guerra, 2806 Oak Crest Ave.

Monday, Dec. 20: Raymond Sepulveda, 1008 W. Annie St.; Lupe Vasquez, 901 W. Mary St.; Ramon Samilpa, 809 W. Mary St.; Manuel Navarro, 1912 S. 5th St.

Tuesday, Dec. 21: Matias Limon, 2313 S. 4th St.; Henry Bargas, 2803 S. 4th St.; Frank Nunez, 811 Herndon Lane; Enrique Saenz, 900 Herndon Lane

Wednesday, Dec. 22: Joe Garcia, 2406 Oak Crest Ave.; Frank Resendez, 2407 S. 2nd St.; Julian Lopez, 2210 S. 2nd St.; Alfredo Moreno, 2212 S. 3rd St.

Thursday, Dec. 23: Albert Gonzalez, 1202 Southwood; Mrs. Lucy Barrientos, 1208 W. Oltorf; Joe Campos, 2404 Oak Crest Ave.; San José Community Center, 2410 Oak Crest Ave. (223:05/12/71) (223:12/12/71). Over 200 persons participated in the posada in 1971 (223:25/12/71).


In 1972, according to The Herald, South Austin's Weekly Community Newspaper, the Posada procession started at the San José Church at 7:00PM. Las Posada processions began on Tuesday, December 19. That first night, the travelers found shelter at the home of Ben Vegas at 706 West Live Oak St. On the second night, the parishioners went to the house of Ramón Samilpa at 809 West Mary St. then to the house of Manuel Navarro at 1912 South 5th St. and finally to the home of Pedro Alcoser at 900 W. Oltorf Street.

On Thursday 21 December 1972, the Posada went to the home of Matias Limon, 2313 South 4th Street then to that of Frank Nunez at 811 Herndon Lane then to that of Henry Saenz at 900 Herndon Lane and finally to the home of Serafin Peña at 901 Herndon Lane.

On Friday 22 December 1972, the Posada went to the home of Joe Garcia at 2406 Oak Crest Ave. then to that of Edward Resendez at 701 W. Oltorf and finally the home of Alfred Moreno at 2212 South 3rd Street.

On the final night of the Posada, the parishioners went to the homes of Valentino Luna, 2407 S. 4th St.; Joe Campos, 2404 Oak Crest Ave.; Julian Herrera, 2407 S. 3rd St. and ended up at the San Jose Youth Center (45) (98).

The San Jose Sunday Bulletin gave a more complete schedule of the posada than did the newspaper. According to the Sunday Bulletin, San José Church sponsored Las Posadas beginning on December 15 at 7:30PM and lasting for nine days. The schedule was announced in the December 5 Sunday Bulletin with the name and address of three or four residences visited each night. The schedule was as follows:

Friday, Dec. 15: James Briones, 1000 W. Oltorf; Gene Casarez, 810 W. Oltorf; Lorenzo Hernandez, 2406 S. 4th St.; Pete Casarez Jr., 803 W. Oltorf

Saturday, Dec. 16: Edward Esquivel, 2601 S. 5th St.; Joe Romero, 2607 S. 5th; Arturo Estrada, 2707 S. 5th St.; David Segura, 3003 S. 4th Street.

Sunday, December 17: Tom Longoria, 714 W. Johanna St.; Pete Castillo, 2008 S. 3rd St.; Henry Guerrero, 2005 S. 3rd St.; Edmundo Zavala, 2310 S. 3rd St.;

Monday, December 18: Miss Angelina Guerrero, 907 W. Johanna; Benancio Limón, 906 W. Live Oak; Ben Vega, 706 W. Live Oak

Tuesday, December 19: Mrs. Celia Guerra, 2806 Oak Crest; Reyes Cortez, 2803 Oak Crest; Domingo Salas, 2611 S. 2nd; Matt Martinez, 2612 S. 2nd Street

Wednesday, December 20: Ramon Samilpa, 809 W. Mary St.; Manuel Navarro, 1912 S. 5th St.; Pedro Alcoser, 900 W. Oltorf Street

Thursday, December 21: Matias Limon, 2313 S. 4th St.; Frank Nunez, 811 Herndon Lane; Henry Saenz, 900 Herndon Lane; Serafin Pena, 901 Herndon Lane

Friday, Dec. 22: Joe Garcia, 2406 Oak Crest Ave.; Edward Resendez, 701 W. Oltorf; Alfred Moreno, 2212 S. 3rd Street

Saturday, Dec. 23: Valentino Luna Sr., 2407 S. 4th; Joe Campos, 2404 Oak Crest Ave.; Julian Herrera, 2407 S. 3rd St.; San José Youth Center


In December 1975, the event attracted so many participants that a different parish organization sponsored the Posada each night. The Posadas were performed every night for nine nights beginning on December 15. The following organizations sponsored the Posadas on different nights.

Dec. 15, Catholic War Veterans Ladies Auxiliary

Dec. 16, High School CCD

Dec. 17, Catholic War Veterans

Dec. 18, Guadalupanas

Dec. 19, Elementary CCD

Dec. 20, Junior High CCD

Dec. 21, Catholic Youth Organization

Dec. 22, Socios de la Sociedad del Sagrado Corazon de Jesus

Dec. 23, Men's Club. The sponsors were charged with planning the route of each night's posada. They urged parishioners living near the church to volunteer their homes for this event (223:14/12/75).


During the next ten years, participation in the event declined. By December 1984, the tradition had about died out at San José Parish. Only Ray Cortez, who had played guitar during the Posada in 1971, kept it alive. Beginning Thursday, Dec. 13 to Friday, Dec. 21, Ray Cortéz and the 12:30PM Choir left the Church every night at 7:30PM and returned to the school after visiting a few houses close to the church (223:09/12/84).

After 1984, Las Posadas was no longer a parish-wide event although individuals continued to organize a posada with their neighbors. In 1987, the midnight Mass on December 24, Christmas Eve was themed "La Posada" but no details were provided. (223: 20/12/1987). In 1988, San Jose Church was asked to provide actors for a play at the Pan American Hillside. Practice was scheduled for December 10 and the show for December 17. The actors from San Jose were asked to represent one of the "Inns" in the play (223:11/12/1988).

In December 1991, a production of folk music and dance was presented at San Jose. The show was billed as a posada but more likely was a musical production based on the traditional songs sung during the posada. High School students are encouraged to participate. Practice was on Tuesdays at 7:00PM during December in the school (223:08/12/1991). The presentation was on Sunday, January 5 at 5:00PM (223:29/12/1991).

In 2016, a new generation of Mexican immigrants tried to revive the tradition. The Guadalupanas and the Socios each donated $50 toward the expenses of the posada. In 2016, less than one-third of the parishioners actually lived within the parish boundaries and only a handful still lived within walking distance of the church. The tradition was changed to suit the changed conditions and the entire event took place on the grounds of the church.


Spring Event or Bazaar

San José Parish, like many Catholic churches, sponsors at least one major fundraising event each year. For several years, San José Parish had two major fundraising events each year, one in the spring of the year and another in the fall. The spring event was usually called the bazaar or carnival and the fall event was called the Jamaica. The spring event took place indoors, perhaps because of the threat of rain, while the fall event took place outside. This chapter will describe the spring event.

Few documents relevant to the San José Church Bazaar or Jamaica prior to 1960 exist. According to the annual report for 1940, the church had an income of $96 from bazaars (1). The Catholic Archives of Texas has preserved a Spanish language program for a "Regio Festival" that took place on Saturday, February 19, 1955 (34). The English translation reads, "Royal Festival of the Crowning of Her Majesty the Queen Frances the First of the Royal House of Gallardo of the Missions of San Jose and Santa Cruz, City Auditorium, 19 February 1955, Austin, Texas". The event took place at the City Coliseum that was located near the railroad bridge between Disch Field and Riverside Drive.

The program consisted of four parts: the entrance of the festival Queen (Miss Frances Gallardo) and her Court, the crowning of the Queen, a presentation of dance and song by young people from San Jose and Santa Cruz Churches and finally a dance with music provided by Camilo Cantu Band. The names of the most important participants are listed in the program including the eleven parishioners who organized the event. The festival was accompanied by an arts exhibition. The event was a fundraiser for the church with entry fees of 25 cents for adults, 10 cents for children and $1.50 for the dance (34).


Although documentation is missing, similar festivals were probably staged each year during the 1950s. The first such event that is listed in the San Jose Sunday Bulletin was a Mardi Gras Dance at the City Coliseum on a Saturday in February 1961 (223:01/08/61). It is likely that the church sponsored a bazaar in May 1961. The May 28 edition of the Sunday Bulletin listed the names of the Mardi Gras Queen and her Court (Queen Jo Ann Treviño, Princess Carol Ann McLaughlin and Duchess Linda Kay Houston) (223:05/28/61).


In April 1962, the San José School Parent Teacher Association sponsored a contest for King and Queen to raise funds for the school library. The Coronation and Program took place on Sunday April 29, 1962, the same day as the Diocesan Spanish Convention (223:01/14/62). San José Parish was the host of the Spanish Convention in 1962. The host church was expected to stage a talent show of some sort and the coronation of the San José King and Queen, and the accompanying Jamaica, fulfilled that obligation.

Prior to the 1962 Jamaica, at least one candidate for Queen sponsored a Bingo game and dinner in the San Jose Community Center to raise money for her campaign (223:04/01/62). The winner of the Queen contest was the child whose sponsors raised the most money. Five children of parishioners from different families received awards during the Jamaica (223:04/29/62).


The church sponsored a Mardi Gras Dance on February 23, 1963. The Socios agreed to sell tickets, manage the ticket office and serve as doormen for the dance (223:02/03/63). Other parish organizations, such as the Catholic War Veterans, also helped. The profit amounted to only $408 because an outbreak of influenza kept many people at home. The pastor explained that this was, "the best we could do with so much sickness here" (223:03/03/63). The event probably took place at the City Coliseum.


Sometime prior to 1965, the parish decided to sponsor a carnival in April or May. The carnival was an all-day celebration that started at 8:00AM with Mass for all the workers and the sponsor, the Parent Teacher Association. The carnival was organized around the coronation of a carnival queen. In 1965, the Queen was Yolanda Carrillo. Her Court was Maria Lydia Cantu, Elaina Moreno, Janie Maldonado, Marie Diaz, Imelda Garza and Mary Lou Bermudez. Sister Dominic Savio organized the festival.

The coronation of the carnival queen took place between 4:00 and 5:00PM. After her coronation, the Queen in turn crowned an image of the Blessed Mother. The carnival ended at 9:30PM with a drawing for a scholarship. Door prizes were given throughout the afternoon and clowns were on hand most of the day (62) (Lone Star Register, 6 May 1965).


On Sunday May 29, 1966 the church sponsored an event called San José Carnival. The event included food and game booths, a sweetheart contest, bingo and a party on the church grounds. The purpose was to raise money for the church. As a fundraiser, the event exceeded expectations. The pastor, Rev. Joseph Houser wrote, "Isn't that remarkable for what you began as a simple little Concurso, Coronation and Fiesta? Our debt on all buildings and grounds is now paid off, except the new one for the new school" (223:06/12/66).

The total income from the Carnival of San Jose was $1,432.98. The net income from the booths was: Third Grade $15.60; Hot Dogs $25.58; Hamburgers $8.95; Men's Booth $38.77; Tacos $23.03; Milk bottles ring toss $23.05; Apron Booth $33.70; Monas and Flowers $15.10 for a total of $183.78. The Fiesta profit was $497.82 and the profit from the Concurso (sweetheart or queen contest) was $935.16 (223:06/12/66).

Various parish groups sponsored booths and helped with the program. The Guadalupanas sold hot dogs, hamburgers and drinks from noon on. The Socios sold argollas (probably rings for the ring toss) and managed the queen contest. The youth group sponsored a "Horror Room", darts, cake walk and a country store. School children had booths featuring snow cones, fruits, popcorn, party games, candy, apples, cake walk, record house and a fortune teller. The San José Catholic War Veterans Post had a surprise booth for men and ran bingo games from 4-7PM. The CWV Ladies Auxiliary ran the apron booth (223:05/15/66).

The largest money maker was the Concurso or sweetheart contest (223:06/12/66). The contest to win the title of Sweetheart began in early April when five families announced that they would sponsor candidates for sweetheart of the carnival. The five families and their candidates were: Refugio Herrera who sponsored Mary Ann Moreno, Frank Castruita who sponsored Linda Soliz, Gonzalo Reyna who sponsored Jo Ann Treviño, Luis Calderon who sponsored Juanita Flores and Tomas Longoria who sponsored Ema De Leon (223:04/24/66) (223:05/01/66).

The Sweetheart candidates and their sponsors raised money is several ways. On May 8, candidate Linda Soliz sponsored games and sold drinks, tacos and menudo from 2:00PM to 7:00PM in the parish hall (223:05/08/66). On May 15, she sold cakes, snow cones and menudo. Candidate Ema De Leon sold cakes. Candidate Mary Ann Moreno sold a dinner of chicken mole for 75 cents a plate from 10:30AM until 4:00PM on a Sunday.

The net proceeds from the Concurso was as follows: Jo Ann Trevino $351.15; Mary Ann Moreno $189.75; Linda Soliz $162.96; Ema De Leon $126.95 and Juanita Flores $104.45. The total net profit from the Sweetheart contest was $935.16. Father Houser wrote, "That was a surprise to all. Thank you Senoritas, Padres and Sponsors" (223:05/29/66). The coronation of the winner (Jo Ann Trevino) as Sweetheart was the final event of the festival and took place at 8:00PM.

The Carnival of San José was not the only parish-wide fundraising event in 1966. In July, the Parish Dance Committee held a dance in the City (Municipal) Auditorium with music provided by the orchestra of Gilbert and the Blue Notes from San Antonio. Tickets were $3.50 per couple including tables (223:06/26/66). The event began at 6:00PM. The Pastor commented, "The Committee of the Dance in City Auditorium did very well for the first time and so few persons, $166. We are very grateful. Maybe other such dances could be put on for San Jose" (223:08/28/66).


On Sunday, April 23, 1967, the parish held a Spring Festival from 3:00PM to 9:00PM. The festival had food and games booths, party games (bingo) and a chicken dinner. The booths were: Jewelry, Cake Booth, Fish Pond, Country Store, Popcorn, Snow cones, Hot dogs, Candy, House of Horrors, Menudo, Milk bottles, Candied Apples, White Elephant, Gypsies (fortune tellers), Soda Water Machine, White Mouse, Penny Toss and Tacos de harina (223:04/23/67). The Bingo games began at 6:30PM. The net proceeds were $758.75. The sales made by each booth were listed in the Sunday Bulletin of May 14, 1967 (223:05/14/67). The event probably took place at the City Coliseum.


In 1968, San José Parish sponsored both a spring and a fall fundraising event. The spring event was a bazaar in the City (Municipal) Auditorium on Sunday May 5 and the fall event was a Jamaica on the church grounds on Sunday June 16.

Planning for the May 5 bazaar began in February when the parish rented the City Auditorium for the day of the bazaar. The bazaar was a benefit for the school. This was an all out effort with the various church societies working together (223:02/11/68). Joe Rocha and Mrs. Celia Guerra were placed in charge of the bazaar with help from the Parish Council (223:02/25/68). Joe Rocha and Mrs. Celia Guerra were the presidents of the men's and women's societies. They recruited Henry Guerrero to act as the chairman and Pete Macias as dinner chairman (223:05/12/68).

Work began in February when the women of the parish sponsored a special Thursday night Bingo to raise funds for the May 5 bazaar. Admission to the games was $2 (223:02/18/68). In March the names of the candidates for bazaar sweetheart were announced. Four candidates, all of whom were members of the Catholic Youth Organization, competed for the position. They and their sponsors were: Miss Rachel Tello, sponsored by Mr. & Mrs. Reyes Cortez and Mr. & Mrs. Tom Longoria; Miss Anna Marie Herrera, sponsored by Mr. & Mrs. Julio Segura and Mr. & Mrs. Guadalupe LaFuente; Miss Virginia Martinez, sponsored by Mr. & Mrs. Joe Alvarado and Mr. & Mrs. Walter Garcia and Miss Virginia Ramos, sponsored by Mr. & Mrs. Lorenzo Salas and Mr. & Mrs. Andrew Cantu (223:03/10/68).

Each candidate undertook to raise funds for the church. The winner of the title was the candidate who raised the most money. In March, Candidate Miss Rachel Tello and her sponsors sold menudo in the parish hall (223:03/17/68). Two weeks later, she sold barbecue plates in the parish hall from 10:00AM until 1:00PM. That same day, candidate Virginia Martinez had a cake sale (223:04/07/68).

On April 13, candidate Virginia Ramos and her sponsors had a cake sale at the HEB shopping center and at Capitol Plaza (223:04/07/68). On April 21, candidate Rachel Tello and her sponsors had a cake sale after all Masses while candidate Anna Marie Herrera sold menudo after each Mass (223:04/21/68). On April 23, Ana Marie Herrera and her sponsors held a dance at the Municipal Auditorium with Augustín Ramírez Band. The price was $3.50 per couple or $2 per person at the door. On April 25, Virginia Ramos and her sponsors (Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Cantu and Mr. and Mrs. De Los Santos) sponsored a bingo game at 815 W. Mary Street at the home of Andrew Cantu. On Saturday, she sponsored a dance from 8:00PM to 12:00PM (223:04/21/68).

As a result of their efforts, the sweetheart candidates raised $3,966.73. In addition, $2,312 in raffle tickets was sold. Eight organizations sponsored booths including the sweetheart candidates, the Socios, the Guadalupanas, the Catholic Youth Organizaton, the Catholic War Veterans, the CWV Ladies Auxiliary, the Parent Teacher Association and the Cub Scouts. Mr. and Mrs. Lee Zamora and Matt Martinez donated much of the food for the dinner (223:05/12/68).

The income from the May 5 bazaar was $9,134.28 with expenses of $1,606.73 for a profit of $7,527.55, exceeding all expectations (223:05/12/68).

The next month, on Sunday June 16, the parish Jamaica took place, apparently on the church grounds. It began with dinner at 11:00AM, probably in the parish hall. Game and food booths and a Ferris wheel operated from 1:00PM to 10:30PM. The regular Sunday bingo began at 8:00PM (223:06/16/68).


Planning for the second parish bazaar began in March with the bazaar scheduled for May 4 in the City (Municipal) Auditorium. Each registered family received $5 worth of raffle tickets in the mail that they were expected to sell. Cash prizes in the amount of $500, $250 and $100 were given to those who sold the most raffle tickets. The ticket stubs and the cash could be returned to the church office in the Sunday envelopes (223:03/16/69).

Four children announced that they were candidates for the title of sweetheart. The four candidates and their sponsors were: Miss Linda Casarez (sponsored by Mr. and Mrs. Julio Segura and Mr. and Mrs. Hilario Garcia); Miss Carey Reyna (sponsored by Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Longoria and Mr. and Mrs. Manuel Castillo); Miss Virginia Soliz (sponsored by Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Cantu and Mr. and Mrs. Manuel Navarro) and Miss Angie Tello (sponsored by Mr. and Mrs. Bernardo Arismendez and Mr. and Mrs. Frank Castruita) (223:04/27/69). Mr. and Mrs. Manuel Navarro sponsored a Bingo at their home to benefit their sweetheart candidate, Miss Virginia Soliz (223:03/30/69).

Twelve parish organizations sponsored 18 booths at the bazaar. The sponsors were Mr. Fernando Sanchez (Socios), Pete Macias (dinner), Guadalupanas (Country store, flowers and clothes), PTA (Fish pond, cakes, tic-tac-toe), San José CYO (darts, flowers, dance), Catholic War Veterans (coin pitch), Young Adults of San Jose (bow and arrow shoot) and the Cursillistas (gift booth). Frank Castruita was in charge of the raffle while Mrs. Celia Guerra and Mrs. Rosie Cantu handled radio and TV announcements. Luis Calderon was in charge of Bazaar Program Booklet. The schedule for the May 4 Bazaar was printed in the Sunday Bulletin the week before the event (223:04/27/69).

In 1969 the total income from the bazaar was $8,478 with expenses of $2,489 for a total profit of $5,988 (223:06/20/71). Some members of the parish council questioned the costs associated with renting the municipal auditorium for the bazaar and on May 4 the parish council received a report on the expenses of renting the City Auditorium for the bazaar. The total expense was $365.92. $250 was for rent of the auditorium. An additional $50 fee was paid to use the kitchen. Each table cost $1 and each chair $0.10. In addition, 10% of food sales went directly to the City (213).


The third annual bazaar was scheduled for May 3 from 11AM to 10PM in the City (Municipal) Auditorium. The parish council asked Henry Guerrero to chair the event with Joe Rocha as vice-chair (213) (223: 02/01/70). These men assigned specific tasks to various parish organizations. The assignments were as follows: Roy Perales- the Raffle; Gerome Estrada and the Socios- the Bingo games; Roger Ibarra and CWV- the money games; Willie Mendez and Gene Casarez- the kitchen; Tim Torres- the program and advertising; Celia Guerra and Rosie Cantu-the publicity; Rev. Mike Mikan- recruiting a celebrity to crown of the queen; Sam Guerra- emcee and Frank Castruita- the signs for booths. Joe Cardona was given the task of building the booths.

The Raffle Committee decided on three prizes for the raffle (233:02/22/70). All parishioners received raffle tickets in the mail (223:03/15/70). The parishioners were expected to sell or purchase their quota of numbered tickets. The Raffle Committee urged parishioners to sell at least the minimum quota of tickets. "We will be checking on you" (223:03/22/70). The deadline for turning in sold raffle ticket stubs was May 1 (213).

The four candidates for sweetheart began work on their campaigns in February. Sweetheart candidate Sylvia Samaniego sponsored a Bingo and dance at Tuesday 7:30PM to 11:30PM in the Community Center. Her sponsors were the Cortez and Castruita families. Sweetheart candidate Linda Hernandez held a dance at the Community Center on Sunday 1:30PM-6:00PM with free beer between 1:30PM and 2:30PM. Her sponsors were the Navarro and Anguiano families (233:02/15/70).

In March, Sylvia Samaniego and her sponsors served tamales and menudo after Mass and at 8:00PM on a Sunday night screened a movie, "Night of Terror" in the Community Center for 35 cents for children and 75 cents for adults. Sweetheart candidate Vivian Botello sponsored a dance on Saturday March 7 with a popular band called Soul Unlimited. The price to attend the dance was $1.50 per person (233:03/01/70).

Two weeks later, sweetheart candidate Linda Herandez sold tamales and cakes after Mass on Sunday (223:03/15/70) and candidate Vivian Botello served bar-b-que from 11:00AM to 2:00PM for $1.00 per plate (223:03/15/70). On Saturday night, March 21, bazaar sweetheart candidate Amelia LaFuente sponsored a dance with Dave Gutierrez Band from 8:30PM to 12:30PM for $5.00 per couple (223:03/01/70).

In April, candidate Linda Hernandez (daughter of Aleck Hernandez) sponsored a rummage sale in the hall. That evening, all four candidates jointly sponsored a dance with Johnny and the Sensations in the parish hall for $5 per couple (223:03/29/70). Amelia (Moly) LaFuente sponsored another dance on April 12 in the Community Center with Soul Unlimited for $1.50 per person (223:04/12/70). In addition to selling raffle tickets, the sweetheart candidates sold ads for the program book.

The third annual San José Bazaar was held at the City/Municipal Auditorium on Sunday May 3 from 11:00AM to 10:00PM (213) (223:04/26/70). Parishioners began leaving the church in trucks after the 6:00AM Mass to set up the booths (223:05/03/70).

The proceeds from the raffle were used pay for a new air conditioning system for the church (223:04/19/70). The total income from the 1970 bazaar was $9,449 with expenses of $2,247 for total profit of $7,202 (223:06/20/71). $4,490 was used to pay for the air conditioning system (223:05/17/70). In January 1971 the Sunday Bulletin revised the income from the 1970 annual bazaar to $7,294.75 (223:01/31/71).


The fourth annual Bazaar was scheduled for Sunday May 2, 1971 at the Municipal Auditorium. The Parish Council again appointed Henry Guerrero to act as chairman with co-chairmen Porfirio Rios, John Anguiano and Vincent Ortiz (223:01/31/71). Once again, raffle tickets were mailed to each family (223:04/04/71).

Events took place between 10AM and 10PM and included a teen dance, food, game booths and Bingo. Senator Yarborough was recruited as the guest speaker and he agreed to crown the sweetheart (223:04/25/71). In February, three children announced their candidacy for sweetheart. The candidates were: Miss Carmen Castillo, daughter of Pete Castillo; Miss Sylvia Luna, daughter of Valentino Luna and Miss Beatrice Mendez, daughter of Willie Mendez (223:02/14/71). The candidates and their sponsors began their campaigns immediately.

On February 21 and March 7, Sylvia Luna sold cakes for $1 and $1.25 after 8AM, 10AM and noon Masses (223:02/21/71) (223:03/07/71). On Sunday, March 14 she hosted a Bingo game at 2PM and a teen dance in the Community Center with the Impressions band from 7PM-11PM for $1.50 per person (223:03/07/71) (223:03/14/71). On March 14, candidate Carmen Castillo held a cake sale after 8AM, 10AM and noon Mass (223:03/14/71). The next weekend, candidate Sylvia Luna sold barbecue chicken plate for $1 (223:03/21/71), candidate Carmen Castillo sold cakes and both Carmen Castillo and Sylvia Luna sponsored dances with the same band, Mike Saucedo (223:03/21/71).

On Sunday, March 28, candidate Beatrice Mendez sponsored a teen dance from 2:00 to 6:00 in the Community Center with Band Sound Unlimited. Tickets were $1.50 per person. On the following Saturday, she sponsored another dance with Manuel Donnelly Band in the Community Center from 9:00 to 1:00AM for $2.50 per person (223:03/28/71).

In different Sundays in April, sweetheart candidate Carmen Castillo sponsored a dance with Manny and the COs for $1.50 per person (223:04/04/71), candidate Beatrice Mendez sold menudo after all masses (223:04/11/71) and candidate Sylvia Luna sponsored two dances: 2PM-6PM with Johnny and Loss Gallitos, $3 per couple and 7:30-11:30PM with The Impressions, $1.50 per person (223:04/25/71).

There were 29 booths at the 1971 Bazaar. The top sellers were dinner $596, bingo $403, beer and cokes $355, hot dogs and hamburgers $288, cakes $258, dance $168, hot corn and chile pies $136, Tic Tac Toe $122 and gifts $114. All the other booths had sales of less than $92 each (223:05/09/71). The other booths (in declining order of sales) were snow cones, fish pond, gold fish, popcorn + pickles + peanuts, Country Store, Baseball, 7 over and under, Ping-a-Coin, Casa Blanca, coffee, White House, Bow and Arrows, darts, ring pitch, rifle shot, duck pond, plants, Rat Race, bean bag and songs (223:05/09/71).

Immediately after the bazaar, the Sunday Bulletin reported a clear profit of $4,452 from the bazaar. Raffle ticket sales was reported to be $1,414 and gross sales at booths was $7,537 with expenses of $3,121 for a profit of $4,452 (223:05/09/71). In June, the figure was corrected to a total income of $7,537 with expenses of $2,822 for a total profit of $4,714 (223:06/20/71).


In February 1972, representatives from the most important parish organizations met and selected Sunday May 14, 1972 as the date of the bazaar. The bazaar would be held at the Municipal Auditorium. Representatives from the Socios, the Parent Teacher Association (PTA), the Guadalupanas, the Catholic Youth Organization (CYO), the religious education program (CCD), the Catholic War Veterans (CWV) and the CWV Ladies Auxiliary from the steering committee. Three co-chairs were selected. The chairmen were Virgil Almogabar (who was in charge of the sweetheart contest), Sam Guerra (who was in charge of publicity, tickets, raffle and guest speaker) and Porfirio Rios (who was in charge of booths).

Four organizations sponsored Sweetheart Candidates in 1972. The Guadalupanas sponsored Miss Sylvia Segura; the Socios sponsored Miss Lolly Vargas; the PTA sponsored Miss Cindy Ortiz and the CYO sponsored Miss Maggie Trejo (223: 12/03/72). The sweetheart candidates were children of parishioners. Cindy Ortiz was the daughter of Jesse Ortiz; Maggie Trejo was the daughter of Mrs. Anzelma Trejo; Sylvia Segura was the daughter of Julius Segura and Gloria Vargas was the daughter of Ascencion Vargas. The previous year's sweetheart was Sylvia Luna, who was the daughter of Valentino Luna (238).

In March, Miss Cindy Ortiz and her sponsor, the PTA, sold plate dinner and tamales beginning at 1PM in the Community Center followed by a dance from 6PM to 8PM. The next Sunday the same group sold tamales and coffee in the Community Center after the 8AM and 10AM Masses (223:05/03/72). Bishop Harris will crown the winner on Saturday, May 13. The other candidates waged similar campaigns. Together, the sweetheart candidates raised $16,095.15 with expenses of $4,600 for net profit of $11,527.58. As a reward for their efforts, one of them was crowned by Queen of the festival on Saturday, May 13 (238) by Bishop Harris.

Packets of raffle tickets were mailed to parishioners in March. The raffle prizes were the biggest prizes yet given at San Jose. The prizes were a color TV set, a clothes washer and dryer and a 1967 Austin car in excellent condition, all with a retail value of $1,300 (223:02/04/72). The parishioners put the sold ticket stubs in the Sunday collection or handed them to the priests (223:16/04/72).

The steering committee decided that the Coronation Ball would take place on Saturday night at the San José Community Center with Bishop Harris and Rev. Jose Houser, C.S.C., as the special guest (223: 26/03/72). The Bazaar itself took place on the following day, May 14th at the Municipal Auditorium (223: 26/03/72).

The San José Church Bazaar began at 11:00AM and ended at 11:00PM. Booth sponsors included the Socios (who sponsored the Bingo games); the Guadalupanas (who sponsored the Country Store, Gift Shop and Cherry Tree); PTA (who sponsored five game booths); CCD (who sponsored the six game booths); CYO (who sponsored one game booth); the CWV (who sponsored the three game booths); Gene Casarez (who sponsored the Tamale Dinner); M. Tejerina (De Colores) and Sister M. Estar (who sponsored a booth selling religious gifts).

The net profit from the annual bazaar in the Municipal Auditorium was in the neighborhood of $15,000 (223:25/03/73) with the exact figure in dispute. It was reported that the bazaar, including the sweetheart contest, earned $19,313.30 with expenses $4,101.09 for net income of $15, 212.21. Elsewhere, it was reported that the sweetheart candidates and the bazaar raised $16,095.15 with expenses of $4,600 for net profit of $11,527.58. A later tabulation indicated that the net profit was $11,500 from the sweethearts, $770 from the bazaar and $3,100 from the raffle (223:28/05/72).


The 1973 Annual Bazaar was scheduled for Sunday June 24 at the Municipal Auditorium. Raffle tickets were mailed to all parishioners. The first raffle prize was a 1973 Chevrolet Nova worth $2,380.00. The second prize was a stereo and a radio (223:08/04/73). The sweetheart candidates sold $1,848 in raffle tickets and other parishioners sold $3,787.00 for a total income of $5,635 from the sale of raffle ticket. Expenses for the raffle were $2,680.75, leaving a net profit of $2,954.25 from the raffle (223:01/07/73).

There were four candidates for sweetheart. Sweetheart Candidates Gloria Tapia and Margaret Sendejas sold barbecue on the church grounds on a Sunday from 9:00AM to 1:00PM at $1.25 per plate (223:25/03/73). Later in the same week, Sweetheart Candidates Sylvia Segura and Dolores Ramos hosted a Bingo at Thomas Longoria's house at 7PM on Thursday (223: 25/03/73). The next month, the Socios sponsored a dance for Sweetheart Candidate Sylvia Segura at the Community Center with El Flaco Jimenez providing the music (223:22/04/73).

On the day of the bazaar, there were twenty booths or activities including a dance, bingo games and dinner, The net profit from the booths and activities was $339.97. Total booth income was $1,872.65 with expenses of $1,949.68. The dance fared better with a net profit of 30% or $417.00. Most of the profit came from the sweetheart contestants ($3,938.19) and the raffle ($2,954.25) for a total net profit of $7,232.41 (223:01/07/73).


Planning for the 1974 Bazaar began on January 27 when the bazaar committee met (249:27/01/74). The second meeting of the bazaar committee was on Feb. 8 (249:03/02/74). The bazaar was scheduled for Sunday May 5 in the Municipal Auditorium (249:12/05/74).

The raffle prize was a Ford truck (249:17/03/74). In April, the Pastor complained that, "We are offering $3,000 in prizes and so far only $635.00 has been turned in" (from raffle ticket sales) (249:07/04/74). The winners of the raffle were announced in the Samaritan newsletter on May 12 (249:12/05/74).


The Bazaar Steering Committee held a general meeting in the Community Center in early February to organize the annual church bazaar. Heads of organizations were advised to attend (223:16/02/75). The committee decided to hold the Bazaar on Sunday May 4 at the Municipal Auditorium (223:05/02/75).

The committee decided that the Raffle prizes would be cash. There would be five prizes given in denominations of $1,000; $750; $500; $250 and $100. Additionally the person selling the most raffle tickets would receive a $100 cash prize (223:23/02/75). Ten tickets were mailed to each parishioner to sell (223:09/03/75) and parishioners were asked to return the ticket stubs and the cash in the Sunday collection or hand them to the priest (223:10/03/75). The proceeds from the bazaar would be used remodel the church (223:10/03/75).

Catholic War Veterans San Jose Post 1805 and its Ladies' Auxiliary sponsored a dance in April to raise seed money for the bazaar (223:13/04/75). There was no sweetheart or queen contest in 1975 but various church organizations sponsored forty-one activities or booths. Only six booths sold food and 21 others were game booths (223:18/05/75). The most successful activities were a booth that sold beer (with sales of $1,101.33), bingo games ($628.11) and the dance ($203.05).

Alfonso Ramos and Orchestra provided music for the dance from 8:00PM to 12:00AM midnight in the Municipal Auditorium. Tickets to the dance were $6 per couple presale and $7 at the door (223:04/05/75). There was a dance contest for teenagers and a retinue of clowns. The bazaar itself began at 11:00AM and ended at 6:00PM. The early closing time allowed everyone to attend the dance. The financial report appeared in the Sunday Bulletin on May 18. Total income was $17,201.31 with total expenses $7,416.27 for a total profit $9,785.04. Raffle tickets sales were $9,770.00 with the five cash prizes totaling $2,600.


The first planning meeting for the 1976 Bazaar was scheduled for January 19 in the school building (223:11/01/75). This meeting was rained out so a second meeting was held January 27. The pastor said, "As everyone knows, many organizations are in trouble within the parish". The pastor urged all organizations to make "one huge joint effort to launch a successful bazaar". The committee decided to move the bazaar to the church grounds and to have the dance on Saturday night instead of on Sunday night (following the bazaar) (223:18/01/76). In this way, the committee hoped to increase the net profit from the bazaar. All registered parishioners received tickets for the bazaar raffle (223:28/03/76). They were instructed to wrap the money around the ticket stubs, fasten it with a rubber band and put it in the Sunday collection basket (223:11/04/76).

The San José Church Bazaar was held on the church grounds on Sunday, May 2. The dance took place the night before. The bazaar began at 1:00PM and ended at 9:00PM (143) (222). Eight parish organizations manned thirty-seven booths. The organizations who sponsored booths were the Guadalupanas, the Socios, the Altar boys, CCD, San Jose Seniors, Men's Club, Catholic War Veterans Ladies Auxiliary and the Catholic Youth Organization. Macrina Tijerina, a long-time leader of the Guadalupanas, ran her own booth (223:02/05/76).

The financial report of the bazaar was printed in the Sunday bulletin of May 9. Total income was $11,065 with expenses of $4,275 for total profit of $6,793. The report listed the sales of each booth. The bingo games run by the Socios netted the most money ($583) followed by a cake booth that sold baked goods worth $330 and John Riojas who sold $318 of hamburgers (223:09/05/76).


The 1978 San José Church Bazaar was held in the Municipal Auditorium on Sunday, May 7. Few records exist of this event. The 26-page program consisted entirely of advertising with no mention of the event itself (240). Bingo and raffle were illegal in Texas (251) and neither Bingo nor raffles were permitted at events sponsored by the Church between 1977 and 1982 (223:20/01/1985). Since both Bingo and raffles had been features of the annual church bazaar, the bazaar committee was forced to find other ways of fund raising.


In 1979 the San José Church Bazaar was held on Sunday April 22 at the Municipal Auditorium (223:15/04/79). Sister Gloria Rodriguez, MJMJ and Sam Guerra were in charge. Sister Gloria was the Director of Religious Education. During the 1970s, the bazaar frequently had three cochairmen: Sam Guerra, Manuel Navarro and Henry Guerrero (58). As a result, Sam Guerra had many years of experience organizing the annual bazaar. Sam Guerra was charged with selling advertising for the bazaar program (223:11/03/79).

All parish organizations were asked to help (223:16/04/79). The CCD baked and sold cakes, the Guadalupanas made and sold potholders, the Senior Citizens grew and sold plants, the Socios prepared and served food, the young people of the CYO ran a jail and the Catholic Adult Organization (CAO) ran game booths (223:15/04/79).

At least two candidates for festival queen were put forward. Each had to be sponsored by at least two parish organizations (91). The Guadalupanas and Socios sponsored Sandra Polanco and the Catholic Youth Organization (CYO) and Religious Education/CCD sponsored Berna Ortiz (223:01/04/79). Each candidate for Queen raised money by selling tickets. There were no other fund raising events for the Queens. Each ticket turned in counted as one vote. Each queen sponsor was given numbered tickets checked out for a specific candidate and only those tickets counted as votes for that candidate (223:11/03/79).


In 1980, Father John Korcsmar C.S.C. was Bazaar Chairman with Sam Guerra and Henry (Hank) Guerrero as co-chairmen. The bazaar was held on Sunday May 11 (which was also Mother's Day) at the Municipal Auditorium. The bazaar began at 11:30AM. The sponsoring organizations were: Catholic War Veterans Post 1805, the CWV Ladies Auxiliary, Catholic Youth Organization (CYO), Religious Education/CCD, Mission Youth, Catholic Adult Organization (CAO), the Socios, the Men's Club, the Guadalupanas and the Women's Club (91).

A contest for San José Sweetheart was held. Each candidate had to be sponsored by two church organizations. The candidate whose sponsors were the most successful in fund raising would be crowned as the 1980 San José Sweetheart. The crowning ceremony began at 6:30PM on the evening of the bazaar.


The 1982 Bazaar was held on Sunday, May 9 (Mother's Day) at Municipal (Palmer) Auditorium at the corner of Barton springs Road and First Street from 11:00AM to 7:00PM. Parishioners were encouraged to set up a booth (223:21/03/82) and there were 30 booths or activities including a teen dance. The total raised from the booths was $3,563. The dinner booth (sponsored by the Socios) raised the most money ($617). They served a plate dinner of carne guidada, rice, beans, tortillas and tea for $2.50 (223:25/04/82). In terms of amount of sales, the dinner was followed by the flower booth ($273), coke ring toss ($267) and the cakewalk ($219).

Since both Bingo and raffles were no longer permitted (251) (223:20/01/1985), the success of the bazaar as a fundraiser depended upon the sweetheart contest. Sweetheart candidates were Lisa Acunña, daughter of Raymond and Teresa Acuña (sponsored by CCD) and Audrey Ortíz daughter of Jesse and Dora Ortíz (sponsored by the Mission group) (223:04/18/82). Mrs. Frances Treviño was put in charge of the sweetheart contest (223:18/04/82) and she decided to have the Sweetheart Dance on Saturday May 1, a week before the bazaar. The Sweetheart Dance was held at the San José Community Center from 9:00PM until 1:00AM. Tim Torres Band provided the music. Supporters purchased tickets from the sweetheart candidates for $10 per couple or $12 at the door and the winning candidate was announced at the dance (223:25/04/82). The sweetheart dance raised $615 and the sweetheart candidates raised $4,903 (223:30/05/82)

In addition to the sales from the booths and activities such as the sweetheart contest, the CWV Ladies Aux. donated $200 towards the bazaar (223:18/04/82). The amount raised from the bazaar was $9,081 with expenses of $2,582 for a total profit of $6,499 (223:30/05/82).


In February 1983, the bazaar committee decided to discontinue to bazaars at the City (Palmer) Auditorium. The reason given was that the rental for the Auditorium almost doubled from the previous year and the City imposed a 25% tax (from 10%) on the one meal they allowed to be served. The pastor and the committee decided that the May Bazaar would be replaced by Monthly Dances and dinners. The dances would be held monthly (except during Lent) at the San José Community Center. Parish organizations, choirs and individuals would be recruited to sell tickets based on the model of the February 5, 1983 pre-Lent dance. The first Parish Dinner, a Mexican Dinner, was March 20th to celebrate St. Joseph's Day.