TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - It's been a full week without their little girl, and on Sunday evening, April 29, the parents of 6-year-old Isabel Celis turned to their church for support. The St. Joseph Catholic Parish on Broadway and Craycroft held a special mass and a rosary ceremony. It's the church Isabel Celis attends. It's only walking distance from the family home.
Our cameras caught of a glimpse of the Celis family as they left the services through a breezeway and into a back parking lot. A spokesperson for the Diocese of Tucson helped coordinate the brief media opportunity, but the family did not make a statement.
The church did not want to make a formal statement about the Celis search, however Bishop Gerald Kicanas issued a letter apologizing for his absence and promising prayers from Rome.
"All in our community stand in solidarity with Sergio and Becky Celis," reads the letter. "I know Isabel's family appreciates very much our concern and especially our prayers."
Some church members expressed feelings of sorrow and grief. They also expressed concerns about how the family is being portrayed, especially when it comes to questions about why the parents didn't address the media sooner or more often.
"It just really breaks their heart and they would love to be out there more," says church member Traci Najar who works with the church music and choral programs. "I mean it's just so hard for them. It's such a heavy burden."
Church members also said they are very grateful for the community support. Many of them have been passing out fliers and keeping Isabel's face in view in hopes that someone will spot the little girl.