Latin American sisters in U.S. ‘build bridges’ during ‘challenging time’

Latin American sisters in U.S. ‘build bridges’ during ‘challenging time’

CHICAGO (CNS) — Thirty-four Latin American siblings that are working as missionaries in bad Latino communities in the us recently collected for the retreat that is 10-day conference in Chicago.

They certainly were accompanied by their mother superiors and, for a career retreat on the last week-end, by 20 young Latinas interested in learning more about religious life.

Involved in underserved areas in 12 dioceses, the Mexican, Puerto Rican, Colombian, Venezuelan, Guatemalan, Salvadoran and Honduran siblings result from 12 spiritual purchases and they are an element of the American Sisters Exchange that is u.S. -Latin Program. Catholic Extension partnered because of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation to generate this system.

The Latin American siblings reach out to and minister with Spanish-speaking immigrant families, supplying leadership in religious training, migrant farmworker outreach, home visitations, youth and young adult ministry, religious guidance, vocations advertising along with other ministries.

The siblings are within their 3rd 12 months of the initiative that is five-year made to strengthen Catholic ministries to immigrant communities, promote vocations among Latino Catholics and develop greater Hispanic leadership into the U.S. Catholic Church.

The program offers pastoral experiences as well as educational programming that is preparing them for greater leadership in their religious congregations for the participating sisters from Latin America.

The might 19-28 Chicago encounter included a retreat when it comes to siblings and their mother superiors during the Cenacle Retreat Center; a career retreat, additionally during the Cenacle; a workshop at Loyola University Chicago; conferences with Chicago Cardinal Blase J. Cupich, Catholic Extension staff additionally the manager regarding the Hilton Foundation’s Catholic Sisters Program; along with visits to many Chicago parishes, including a “Sisters’ Serenade” at St. Teresa of Avila Parish.

Fun agenda products included going to a Chicago Cubs game and taking in a few places of Chicago, where Catholic Extension is dependent. The business could be the leading supporter of missionary work with bad and remote components of the usa. Extension’s hashtag #SistersintheCity accompanied those outings.

Inviting the siblings to Chicago, Cardinal Cupich addressed them in Spanish during a gathering within the Chicago Archdiocese’s St. James Chapel. The cardinal blessed them and thanked them for his or her great present to your U.S. Church.

Catholic Extension stated that as its chancellor, Cardinal Cupich happens to be instrumental in guiding and developing this program.

He asked a “special benefit” regarding the sisters: “When you meet our immigrant friends and family for the nation, please share this message that God is with them in this challenging time and that the church will never stop advocating for them with them from me: Tell them. Inform them that their tradition and language are breathtaking and they enrich us. And let them know that i am going to pray to the mom Mary that she protect and cover them and their own families in her mantle. ”

During Sunday Mass May 21 at Old St. Patrick Church in Chicago, Father Jack Wall, president of Catholic Extension, respected the siblings for “having left out their own families and their nation in the future in to a land that is strange provide among the list of poorest for the bad. ” He praised their “powerful witness to your power of God’s love. ”

Father Wall said, “At Catholic Extension, we’ve started to realize that you can’t go directly to the poorest places in america and never get the existence for the Catholic Church. Plus the real face of ministry on the list of poorest regarding the bad many times is ladies spiritual. They is there having a profound joy in their hearts. ”

Handling the siblings straight, he stated, “Sisters, Hermanas, we have been therefore grateful for the walking together with us in hope. Your acceptance with this mission to come quickly to this nation happens to be a blessing that is great us. ”

At a meeting might 25, Sister Maria Teresa de Loera said the siblings taking part in the U.S. -Latin United states Sisters Exchange system see on their own to be in the frontlines of responding to Pope Francis’ call to “go away to your peripheries of migration. ”

An associate associated with Mexican purchase of Catholic Teachers regarding the Sacred Heart of Jesus whom now works into the Diocese of minimal Rock, Arkansas, Sister de Loera stated, “We are hearing, battling with, providing desire to, and sharing the immigrants to our lives. Our most readily useful share is our prophetic witness of unity and joy. ”

She told Extension mag that the encounter that is 10-day Chicago ended up being recharging them, saying, “It makes the Holy Spirit be reborn in us as women religious. ”

Through Catholic Extension’s partnerships with U.S. Catholic universities, the siblings within the U.S. -Latin United states Sisters Exchange Program many times per year get substantial language, social, theological and pastoral training. At the conclusion of this program, they are going to come back to their Latin American congregations, that may in turn reap the benefits of their increased skills and expertise.

Sister Brenda Hernandez Valdes is certainly one of three Daughters of Mary Immaculate of Guadalupe from Mexico who just work at St. Joseph Parish in Williston into the Diocese of Bismarck, North Dakota. She stated that on her behalf this program happens to be “a great possibility during my life to cultivate in several ways — as a individual person, spiritually plus in my apostolic life. This Catholic Extension system happens to be a godsend not merely when it comes to individuals but in addition for us, for every single cousin into the program. ”

Once the parishioners in Williston develop inside their faith, Sister Hernandez stated, “we understand fruits within their life. For me this is the best benefit associated with experience. ” Before the siblings’ arrival, the workers that are immigrant not need anybody within the area’s parishes speak their language. “The Catholic Church was indeed people that are losing North Dakota, ” she said. “With our existence, we’ve been assisting the church to save lots of also to keep individuals. ”

She explained that numerous regarding the employees in North Dakota’s oil areas around Williston arrive alone. “Some of them don’t have actually family relations or friends. Everyone requires family members, as well as in our church, everyone is family members, we have been God’s household. ”

Through the siblings’ first year in Williston, Sister Hernandez stated, the first Communion of 25 Hispanic children additionally possessed an effect that is ripple Several of their moms and dads hadn’t been getting Communion since they are not hitched. Whenever kids asked them why they didn’t get to Communion, they chose to get hitched within the church. “We evangelized the kids, ” Sister Hernandez stated, “and then a children evangelized their moms and dads. It really is awesome. ”

Sister Maria Catalina Carrillo, whom traveled from Mexico to represent Sister Hernandez’s order that is religious the Chicago conference, stated, “So many congregations are right right right here, but together we feel united as one church. The sisters in this system would be the connection between your Hispanic and cultures that are anglo. They bring the 2 communities together. ”

For a lot of associated with the siblings, in addition it happens to be an eye-opening experience with respect into the realities of life for immigrants in america.

Sister Carrillo stated, “In Mexico we genuinely believe that the folks whom move from Mexico towards the united states of america have actually a life that is easy nevertheless they don’t. They should face a lot of hard things, plus the siblings bring them joy through the church while making them feel welcome. ”

Sister Marite Gutierrez, a Catechist Sister of Jesus Crucified working at Madonna del Sasso Parish in Salinas, Ca, stated a lot of her parishioners are farmworkers whom face numerous dilemmas.

She cites the exemplory case of a mother that is young who’s struggling to produce ends satisfy and everyday lives together with her two daughters in a tiny space in a condo this woman is sharing with another family members.

“ we think that’s not exactly just exactly what Jesus wishes for their children, ” Sister Gutierrez said. “The very first thing i will do because of this mom is usually to be her buddy, to pay attention also to reach down in order that she along with her kiddies can feel God’s love and take care of them. Faith may be a little screen for light, for Jesus to come into their everyday everyday lives. ”

This has been more difficult for many of her parishioners year. “They don’t understand what will probably occur to them, ” she stated. Due to the fear that is widespread of, “they don’t determine if at the conclusion of the time they’ll be in a position to get back from their work. The kids don’t understand if their moms and dads would be home if they keep coming back from school. ”

Sister Gutierrez added, “Immigrant individuals are our friends and family, so when the church, we have to assist them to by any means we are able to. 1st and a lot of important things is constantly to provide hope. ”