St. Mary Mission

P.O. Box 39
Tohatchi, NM 87325


Fr. Dale Jamison, OFM, is a Franciscan friar of Our Lady of Guadalupe Province, ordained in 1974. He has spent over four decades ministering to the native peoples of New Mexico and Arizona. He became pastor of St. Mary Mission in 2012, appointed as Director of Native American Ministry for the Diocese of Gallup that same year and serves on the Board of Directors for the Southwest Indian Foundation. Fr. Dale is a Provincial Councilor for the OLG Province, and serves as Guardian for all the Franciscans living on the Navajo Indian Reservation. He was appointed a Missionary of Mercy by Pope Francis for the Jubilee Year of Mercy and subsequent years. (Read Pope Francis' address to the Missionaries of Mercy.)

Sr. Pat Bietsch, OSF, Ministry Coordinator, is a Sister of St. Francis of Oldenburg, Indiana. With degrees in special education and pastoral ministry, she came to St. Mary Mission after many years teaching in the Midwest, in addition to interacting with the Cheyenne and Crow in Montana. Learning to live a simple and green life, she enjoys gardening, and promotes solar energy through her activities with the Gallup Solar organization.

Sr. Marlene Kochert, OSF, Ministry Coordinator, came to St. Mary Mission in 1998, after seven years at Christ the King parish in Shiprock. A Sister of St. Francis of Oldenburg, Indiana, she previously taught in Indiana and Ohio, and served as a Director of Religious Education. She earned her bachelor degree in Math and Education at Marian College, Indianapolis (now Marian University), and a Masters degree in Religious Studies and Parish Ministry. At the Mission, Sr. Marlene teaches RCIA and Children’s Religious Education, along with many other ministries.

Boots is the mission cat, with a very Franciscan heritage! He was born at St. Michaels Mission in Arizona, and gifted to St. Mary's as our resident rodent patrol. He definitely earns his keep, and loves to be cuddled as a reward for his services.