Category: Diocese

Holy Week in Pecos

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The May 22, 1987 tornado that hit Saragosa,TX destroyed much of the town, killing at least 30 and injuring over 100 people. On Apr. 11, 2015, Bishop Mark Seitz celebrated Mass with the community for the first time as Bishop. Bishop also took the time to bless a marble statue of the Pieta purchased by parishioners and generous donors from the surrounding parishes. The Italian marble statue of the Pieta was dedicated in remembrance of the victims of the tornado.

RGC Center May 2015 _Page_9_Image_0006The silent procession started at 2 pm Holy Friday in front of Santa Rosa Church down the Main Street of the City to St Catherine’s Church.
Parishioners from all six parishes (Santa Rosa, St. Catherine, Our Lady of Refuge, Our Lady of Guadalupe, Saint Emily, and Christ the King) participated as one. The Knights of Columbus and other men from the community carried the Statue of our Lady of Sorrows, the body of Jesus and the Cross our our Lord. At exactly 3 pm parishioners arrived to St. Catherine’s to hear the 7 Last Words of our Lord. The purpose of the procession was to walk with the Lord and Marry reflecting on the silence of the death of our Lord and to bring the parishioners of this area to pray and worship together as one community.

First Pro-Family Pro-Life Conference Moves Attendees

-Sidewalk Jesus columnist Janet M. Crowe

Although physically separated by a river and border fence, two nations gathered in El Paso and Juarez for the first Bi-National Pro-Family Pro-Life Congress. In El Paso alone, more than 900 individuals, with

Trent Horn, Catholic Answers host, takes a question at the Pro-Life Pro-Family conference

Trent Horn, Catholic Answers host, takes a question at the Pro-Life Pro-Family conference

youth almost outnumbering adults, joined in spirit to learn how to spread the message of life that the world badly needs to hear.

Summing up the purpose for jointly hosting a conference on both sides of the border, Bishop Mark Seitz said, “We are one and we can work together. We can do more because we are united in Christ to work for the dignity and sanctity of life.”

Working to promote the sanctity of life can boil down to one question, according to Trent Horn of Catholic Answers. Asking, “what are the unborn” brings the discussion to a level of obvious logic that cannot, in good conscience, be ignored. Since even a child easily understands that a mother dog and father dog produce a puppy dog, and a human mother and a human father clearly create nothing less than a human baby, then how can adults be so blind as to fail to see the humanity of the unborn?

While unwillingness to see the truth often permeates pro-life versus pro-choice discussions, we often fall into the trap of wanting to win the argument of who is right or that what we are saying is right. Instead, Horn emphasized, we must consider that at the heart of the matter are people with needs, goals, dreams and fears. We cannot forget to express our concern for that person and her situation as well as the child within her womb. Empathy should be the beginning of our insight into the problem that an individual faces or we not only lose the argument, we lose sight of the compassion that must drive us in helping others.

Then, we can show that the truth is more simple than the rhetoric espoused by those who try to muddy the waters. Jesus spoke in parables, and people could understand the comparison to their own lives in His stories. We, too, can “trot out a toddler,” as Horn says, to clearly show the truth behind abortion’s misinformation and lies.

In other words, when someone claims that it is unfair for a woman living in poverty to be forced to bring another child into the world when she is struggling to care for the children she already has, we can show that one life is no less valuable than another. Rather than aborting the life within her womb, why can’t she “abort” or get rid of the toddler or even the troubled teenager she already has? “Trot out a toddler” into the discussion to ask why the murder of one life is acceptable while the murder of another’s life is a heinous act. Shock and anger may be the initial response, but, hopefully, awareness and understanding will prevail or will at least plant a seed.

Love and a few tears watered those seeds of understanding at the conference in the testimony of a high school student named Reed who shared the song he wrote about his own life. Reed’s life began as a result of rape. At only fifteen, his mother did not feel able to care for the child that resulted from that terrible act but she refused to take away her child’s future in the way that her rapist had taken away her confidence and security. Reed sang of his grateful love for both his birth mother who gave him the gift of life as well as for his adoptive family whose love allowed him to become the person he is today and hopes tbe in his future.

And, it was to the future that all of the speakers directed their voices and their hearts. Reed challenged the youth who filled the bleachers of the gymnasium to “be the person God created you to be and be a disciple to the nations” by spreading the God’s word that life is sacred and must be protected.

RGC Center May 2015 _Page_9_Image_0005Bishop Seitz urged each person to have the courage to do what is right in the sight of God because the freedom of religion guaranteed in our Constitution must be supported not just by the ability to attend church but in the way we live what we believe as our Catholic faith every day. Theology of the Body speaker Monica Ashour roused both youth and married couples to come out of the darkness and into the light of understanding and respect for oneself.

Archbishop Garcia-Siller of San Antonio echoed that call to the youth, “We must treat our bodies as temples of the Holy Spirit because God dwells inside of our bodies. We are beautiful from the inside out.” With courage, he said, we can share that beautiful light within us. We are called to be the light of Christ to others who are in darkness especially when situations are difficult because the truth cannot be compromised.

If we go forth with the light of Christ, then each person’s shining light will illuminate others until the darkness no longer has a hold on our world. Let’s begin today!


— William McKenna, M.S., Clinical Extern at the IPS Center for Psychological Services

QUESTION: How can I take responsibility for my own sinful actions, while still recognizing the mercy and love of God?

Although we are created in the image and likeness of God, we suffer from the effects of Original Sin. Despite our fallen nature, we still have full use of free will, unless that will is inhibited by aMarch RCC 2015 _Page_7_Image_0001 serious psychological disorder or another person or circumstance that truly prevents us from acting freely. To be healthy psychologically, a person must be able to accept and be accountable for his or her sins. The difficulty is to find the balance between taking responsibility for our sins while not despairing of our weaknesses.

A good way to understand this balance is through the context of a relationship. It may be easy for a married couple to be able to identify the faults and failings of their spouse, simply due to the intimate nature of their relationship. In a healthy marriage, husband and wife are able to help each other recognize their faults, while at the same time encouraging each other to overcome them. Understanding that we must rely on the forgiveness of another when we have sinned against them, while also always seeking to repair the relationship and grow in virtue, helps us to understand our need both for God’s mercy and our own resolve to do better.

Advice from psychological experts, drawing on Catholic
faith and modern psychology

The tendency to look for reasons to blame people and circumstances outside of ourselves is easier and more convenient than simply owning up to the sin. Just look at Adam and Eve in the book of Genesis, blaming one another and the snake. However, if we recognize the part we have played in our actions, we see not only the wrong we have done, but also the work needed to repair our relationships, including our relationship with God. While this realization is difficult, it is the only way we can accept the mercy of God. Sinning does not mean that we are a failure, simply that we are human.

As we continue the holy season of Lent, let us try to remember that while God loves us in spite of our sinfulness, that we can grow psychologically and spiritually when we accept and take responsibility for our sins.

Have a practical question related to psychology and faith? Write to


–William McKenna, M. S., Clínico No Residente del Centro IPD para Servicios Sicológicos.
Traducción por Martha Marmolejo


PREGUNTA: ¿Cómo puedo asumir la responsabilidad de mis propias acciones pecaminosas, sin dejar de reconocer la misericordia y el amor de Dios?

Aunque hemos sido creados a imagen y semejanza de Dios, sufrimos los efectos del pecado original. A pesar de nuestra naturaleza caída, todavía tenemos pleno uso del libre albedrío, a menos que la voluntad sea inhibida por un grave trastorno psicológico, otra persona u otra circunstancia que realmente nos impida actuar libremente. Para estar sano psicológicamente, una persona debe ser capaz de asumir y ser responsable de sus pecados. La dificultad está en encontrar el equilibrio entre tomar la responsabilidad por nuestros pecados y no desesperarnos por nuestras debilidades.March RCC 2015 _Page_7_Image_0001

Una buena manera de entender este equilibrio es a través del contexto de una relación. Puede ser fácil para una pareja casada identificar los defectos y las faltas de su cónyuge, simplemente debido a la naturaleza íntima de su relación. En un matrimonio saludable, marido y mujer son capaces de ayudarse unos a otros reconociendo sus faltas, mientras que al mismo tiempo se estimulan entre sí para superarlos. Entendiendo que debemos confiar en el perdón de otros cuando hemos pecado en contra de ellos, debemos buscar siempre reparar la relación y crecer en la virtud, la cual nos ayudará a entender nuestra necesidad, tanto de la misericordia de Dios, como de nuestra propia voluntad para hacer lo mejor.

Expertos en psicología asesoran sobre la base de la fe católica y la psicología moderna

La tendencia de buscar argumentos para culpar a la gente y circunstancias fuera de nosotros, es más fácil y más conveniente que simplemente reconocer el pecado. Basta con mirar a Adán y Eva en el libro del Génesis, culpándose uno al otro y a la serpiente. Sin embargo, si reconocemos la parte que hemos jugado en nuestras acciones, no sólo veremos el mal que hemos hecho, sino que también el trabajo que se requiere para reparar nuestras relaciones, incluyendo nuestra relación con Dios. Aunque esta realización es difícil, es la única manera en que podemos aceptar la misericordia de Dios. El pecar no significa que somos un fracaso, simplemente que somos humanos.

A medida que continuamos el santo tiempo de la Cuaresma, tratemos de recordar que mientras Dios nos ama a pesar de nuestro pecado, también podemos crecer psicológicamente y espiritualmente cuando aceptamos y asumimos la responsabilidad por nuestros pecados. ¿Tiene alguna pregunta práctica relacionada con la psicología y la fe? Escríbanos a;

Book Review:Bioetica delle Virtù – Il soggetto e la comunità

Author: Armando Savignano, Guida 1999, Naples, Italy ISBN 88-7188-270-9
Rev. Rolando Fonesca, San Juan Diego Parish

Virtue ethics brings forward the following question: What sort of person should I become? This sets it apart from the modern world which tends to concentrate on the question of “what rulesRio Grande April 2015_Page_19_Image_0002 should we follow and why should we respect them?” In order to acquire virtue it is necessary to approach the idea of a “good life”, pursued as an end in itself within a coherent personal life project which happens to be inserted in a given tradition. The excercise of virtue is truly a fondamental aspect of human life and cannot be set aside. It is not enough for a doctor to have an excellent preparation in his field – he also needs to embrace a humanistic medicine into the equation. That is to say the way he will treat his patients with kindness, understanding, compassion. The way he is going to be attentive to the patients needs and the trust that needs to unfold in doctor-patient relations. This willingness to approach the world of the patient with concern and understanding beyond the necessary technical procedures and decisions that need to be made is what makes a doctor a “good doctor”, i.e. a virtuos doctor. From this optic, this volume examines current issues relating to bioethics, with special reference to the biomedical aspects: the relationship between doctor and patient, the concept of health, balance between a more human medicine and scientific and technological achievements.

Devotion of the Month: Holy Eucharist

By tradition, the Catholic Church dedicates each month of the year to a certain devotion. In April, it is the Blessed Sacrament. One thing that sets Catholics apart from other Christians who believe Rio Grande April 2015_Page_19_Image_0001in the Real Presence (that the bread and wine truly become the Body and Blood of Christ) is that we don’t believe that the Real Presence ends when the Sacrament of Holy Communion is complete. Frequent prayer before the Blessed Sacrament, reserved in the tabernacle, is a path to spiritual growth.

The Act of Adoration can be incorporated into our daily prayers. In it, we thank Christ for His continued presence among us, not just through His grace but physically, in the Holy Eucharist. His Body is the Bread of Angels, offered for our strength and salvation.

Act of Adoration

I adore Thee, O Jesus, true God and true Man, here present in the Holy Eucharist, humbly kneeling before Thee and united in spirit with all the faithful on earth and all the blessed in heaven. In deepest gratitude for so great a blessing, I love Thee, my Jesus, with my whole heart, for Thou art all perfect and all worthy of love.

Give me grace nevermore in any way to offend Thee, and grant that I, being refreshed by Thy Eucharistic presence here on earth, may be found worthy to come to the enjoyment with Mary of Thine eternal and everblessed presence in heaven. Amen.

Devoción del Mes: Sagrada Eucaristía

Por tradición, la Iglesia Católica dedica cada mes del año a una cierta devoción. En abril, es el Santísimo Sacramento. Una cosa que distingue a los católicos de otros cristianos que creen en la Rio Grande April 2015_Page_19_Image_0003Presencia Real, (que el pan y el vino se convierten en el verdadero Cuerpo y la Sangre de Cristo) es que no creemos que la Presencia Real termine cuando el Sacramento de la Santa Comunión se completa. La oración frecuente ante el Santísimo Sacramento reservado en El Sagrario, es un camino hacia el crecimiento espiritual.

El acto de adoración se puede incorporar en nuestras oraciones diarias. En ella, damos las gracias a Cristo por su continua presencia entre nosotros, no solo a través de su gracia, sino físicamente, en la Sagrada Eucaristía. Su cuerpo es el pan de los ángeles, ofrecido para nuestra fuerza y salvación.

Acto de Adoración

Te adoro, oh Jesús, verdadero Dios y verdadero Hombre, aquí presente en la Sagrada Eucaristía, humildemente de rodillas delante de ti y unidos en espíritu con todos los fieles en la tierra y todos los bienaventurados en el cielo. En el más profundo agradecimiento por tan gran bendición, te amo, Jesús mío, con todo mi corazón, porque Tú eres todo perfecto y todo digno de amor.

Dame la gracia donde nunca más y de ninguna manera te ofenda a Ti y haced que yo, siendo refrescado por tu presencia eucarística aquí en la tierra, sea hallado digno de venir a disfrutar con María de Tu presencia siempre bendita y eterna en el cielo. Amén.

Pope Francis Will Address Congress

By Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON (CNS) — House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, announced Feb. 5 that Pope Francis will address a joint meeting of Congress Sept. 24.March RCC 2015 _Page_1_Image_0003

The pontiff’s “historic visit” would make him the “first leader of the Holy See to address a joint meeting of Congress,” Boehner said in a statement, adding that he was “truly grateful that Pope Francis has accepted our invitation.”

Boehner noted that “in a time of global upheaval, the Holy Father’s message of compassion and human dignity has moved people of all faiths and backgrounds. His teachings, prayers, and very example bring us back to the blessings of simple things and our obligations to one another.”

“We look forward to warmly welcoming Pope Francis to our Capitol and hearing his address on behalf of the American people,” he added.

A statement from the Archdiocese of Washington called it “a great honor and tremendous joy to welcome our Holy Father, Pope Francis, to the Archdiocese of Washington during his proposed pastoral visit to the United States in September.”

The statement said the announced visit “will be a time of grace for all of us.” It also said the archdiocese looks forward “to the official announcement of more details of the visit.”

On Jan. 19 when the pope was on the plane returning to Rome from his visit to the Philippines, he told reporters that his September trip to the U.S. would take him to Philadelphia, New York and Washington — where he intends to canonize Blessed Junipero Serra.

The pope also confirmed he would visit the United Nations in New York. He had already announced his participation Sept. 26 and 27 in Philadelphia for the World Meeting of Families there.

El Papa se Dirigirá al Congreso

Por Servicio de Noticias Católicas

WASHINGTON (CNS) El Presidente de la Cámara John Boehner, republicano de Ohio, anunció el 5 de febrero que el Papa Francisco expondrá en la reunión conjunta del Congreso del 24 deMarch RCC 2015 _Page_1_Image_0003 septiembre.

La “visita histórica” del pontífice lo convertirá en el “primer líder de la Santa Sede que asiste a una reunión conjunta del Congreso”, dijo Boehner en un comunicado y añadió que estaba “verdaderamente agradecido de que el Papa Francisco haya aceptado nuestra invitación.”

Boehner señaló que “en un momento de agitación global, el mensaje del Santo Padre de compasión y dignidad humana, ha movido a la gente de todos los credos y orígenes. Sus enseñanzas, oraciones, y ejemplos nos regresa a las bendiciones de cosas simples y nuestras obligaciones para con los demás “.

“Esperamos con gusto darle una cálida bienvenida al Papa Francisco a nuestro Capitolio y escuchar su discurso en nombre del pueblo estadounidense”, agregó.

Un comunicado de la Arquidiócesis de Washington lo llamó “un gran honor y una tremenda alegría dar la bienvenida a nuestro Santo Padre, Francisco a la Arquidiócesis de Washington, durante su visita pastoral propuesta a los Estados Unidos en septiembre.”

El comunicado dijo que la anunciada visita “será un tiempo de gracia para todos nosotros”. También dijo que la arquidiócesis espera “el anuncio oficial de la visita y más detalles de la misma.”

El 19 de enero, cuando el Papa estaba en el avión de regreso a Roma de su visita a las Filipinas, dijo a los periodistas que su viaje de septiembre a los EE.UU., lo llevaría a Filadelfia, Nueva York y Washington – donde tiene la intención de canonizar al Beato Junípero Serra. El Papa también confirmó que visitaría las Naciones Unidas en Nueva York. Él ya había anunciado su asistencia al Encuentro Mundial de las Familias para los días 26 y 27 de septiembre en Filadelfia.

How to See the Pope In Philadeliphia

Diocese of El Paso, along with Canterbury Pilgrimages and Tours, is now organizing a large group of parishioners to visit Philadelphia during Pope Francis’ first U.S visit.

The World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia, PA will be held Sept. 22-27. The El Paso tour will be from Sept 22-28.

Held every three years and sponsored by the Holy See’s Pontifical Council for the Family, the World Meeting of Families is the world’s largest Catholic gathering of families. The theme of the World Meeting of Families – Philadelphia 2015 is “Love Is Our Mission: The Family Fully Alive,” emphasizing the impact of the love and life of families on our society.

The per person cost is $1,895 (double occupancy.) This includes round-trip airfare, hotel for 6 nights, daily breakfast, 2 dinners, motor coach transportation, and sight-seeing in Historic Philadelphia. **Not included is the cost of the WMF conference registration fee.

A $450 deposit must be made with Canterbury Tours in order to secure your seat.

For more info and/or to register, contact Canterbury Tours at 800-653-0017. Or go to

For more on the World Meeting of Families, go to