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     On January 18, 1991 St. Elizabeth's continued to be blessed with a dedicated Portuguese priest, Father Eduino Silveira who was  appointed first as administrator, and then as pastor effective October 12, 1993.  A native of Fenais da Luz, Sao Miguel, he immigrated to the U.S. with his family at age 16 in 1971, to Providence, R.I.  He graduated from high school there, then returned to the Azores to attend the seminary in Angra, Teceira in 1979, completing studies for the priesthood at Menlo Park, California.  He was ordained at Sacramento's Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in 1987 and assigned first to Presentation Church and then to Our Lady of Assumption, before being appointed to St. Elizabeth's.

     Father Eduino or Father Ed, as he preferred to be called, was a personable and friendly man.  He presided over a vibrant social and religious community at St. Elizabeth's.  He was eager to mingle with parishioners and participated in all the parish events, indluding the yearly church festival or bazaar, Our Lady of Fatima celebrations, many weekly church activities, and the famous St.

Elizabeth's church  choir, conducted by Manuel (Machado) Jora. 

     In addition to continuing the programs and activities initiated by Monsignor Fagundes, Father Silveira

initiated some of his own, such as new catechumenal study groups and directed upgrades to the church,

such as an elevator from street level to the basement hall as well as the Church level.  He also added as a

fundraiser the matanca, a winter tradition from the Azores of killing a pig and having a party.  With his very

busy schedule, Father Ed found relaxation in attending the lovely garden area between the church and the

rectory.  Central in the flower-planted area is the scene of Our Lady of Fatima with its lovely statues.  It was

his place of solitude.           

     Father administered to St. Elizabeth's until January 5, 2005, when he was transferred to Redding, California, much to the dismay of his parishioners.  As many as two hundren of his congregation protested to the bishop in a candlelight procession in hopes of rescinding the transfer but to no avail.  Not only was Father Ed popular with his flock, but the hope of obtaining another Portuguese-speaking pastor was almost nonexistent.

     On July 1, 2005, the Bishop brought in three priests who were part of the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata, CSS, which contracts pastors for terms of years according to need.  Father Giancarlo Mittempergher, CSS, Father Antonio Luiz Medeiros dos Santos, CSS and Father Edwin Limpiado, CSS were to serve both St. Elizabeth's and Holy Cross Parish in West Sacramento, where they made their residence.  Father Antonio, who is from Brazil speaks Portuguese, was procured as necessary for St. Elizabeth Church.  Father Edwin left Sacramento after about a year to become a Diocesean priest in the Monterey Diocese.  Father Giancarlo and Father Antonio went back to the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata in July 2013.  From July 2013 through July 2016 the parish had several interim priests assigned by the Diocese. On August 1, 2016 Father Mark Richards was installed as Pastor of the parish with  Father Eduino Silveira continuing as the Chaplain to the Portuguese Community.

 

History continues... 

 

He was succeeded by Father Jose F. Ribeiro, S.J., who had been assigned to St. Elizabeth's Church in 1982 after serving the Portuguese immigrants at St. Claire's Church, Santa Clara, California, from 1975 to1981.  He was born near Lamego, Beira Alto, Portugal in 1935, entered the Jesuit seminary at Santo Tirso, Minho in 1951 and was ordained at Braga July 10, 1965.  He served one year in Zimbabwe and several years in Mozambique in three separate tours of duty, being Superior of the Mission at Tet for four years.  He left Mozambique for California when that country declared its independence of Portugal in 1975.

     A scholarly man Father Ribeiro acquired several advanced academic degrees, in philosophy, theology, sociology and clinical psychology from universities in Portugal, Rome and Spain; and a master's degree in marriage, family and child counseling from the University of San Francisco.

     Mindful that dispersal of the original ethnic base of a parish into other non-national parishes has caused the closure of churches, Father Ribeiro attempted to strengthen the parish by holding such events such as the annual parish festival on the church grounds, which were expanded in 1988 through  the purchase of the house adjacent to St. Elizabeth's.  The house became known as Father Ribeiro's House where he created a library and research facility.  Today the church is attended not only by the Portuguese and their descendants, but by others in the neighborhood.  Fr. Ribeiro left the parish in January 1991 to pursue doctoral studies at the University of San Francisco.  He then returned to Portugal where he taught at Catholic University.  He became ill and died on August 2, 1998.