I am happy you are here to learn more about our Guardian Angels parish community. My name is Father Tony VanderLoop and I am the pastor of Guardian Angels. On behalf of all our staff, volunteers and parishioners, I welcome you to our community. If you are a new to us, I hope that through this website you will be drawn to engage with our parish community. If you are a parishioner, I hope that you find the information you need to become more fully engaged in our family of faith.
Guardian Angels is a traditional and welcoming Catholic parish dedicated to serving one another and our larger community. Our mission is to reach out from the Altar of Christ to educate, serve, and evangelize. We are a place where people can come to know and love God through the Holy Eucharist, through prayer, through the celebration of the sacraments, through formation in our faith, and through fellowship with one another.
In coming to know and love God, we are empowered to authentically serve the needs of others. This follows the two great commands given to us by Jesus. When Jesus was asked which of all the commandments was the greatest, he replied, “You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment. The second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matthew 22: 37-39)
The celebration of the Holy Eucharist in Mass is the source and summit of our life of faith that forms us to be in communion with our Lord and drawn into the life of the Trinity who is love. Thus, this celebration and holy communion is what empowers us to go out and live our mission of living God’s love and following our Lord’s command to show God’s love to others everyday as disciples of Jesus Christ.
Guardian Angels is a community of disciples who are on a lifelong journey of faith together. Whether you are just beginning to explore the Catholic faith or have been Catholic all your life; whether you have not been actively engaged in parish life in the past or are already deeply involved in ministry; Guardian Angels parish is a place where you can belong – and grow in your faith.
I, myself, am new to the parish and have been the pastor since July 2020. I was ordained a priest of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis in 2003 and Guardian Angels is my fifth assignment and third as a pastor. My previous parish was Saint Henry in Monticello where my mother and father currently live. I have lived in the Twin Cities area all my life and grew up in Elk River, MN. I enjoy getting outside when I can and you might see me jog by or drive by with my kayak on the roof of my car. I have enjoyed hiking in the mountains out West. In my slightly younger years, you would find me on a basketball court on a fairly regular basis. Now, it takes a little more stretching and prayers, but I am not done yet and can hold my own in a game of Lightning or Horse. I am very happy to be here at Guardian Angels and to serve you and the whole parish as pastor.
We are here to help you grow in your faith journey. I invite you to learn more about our parish by visiting our About Us page and reading our parish bulletins. Even better, join us for Mass and meet us in person. Feel free to call and make an appointment with me to learn more about our parish community and so I can answer any questions you may have. I look forward to meeting with you personally. Welcome to Guardian Angels!
May God bless you and your family.
Father Tony VanderLoop