A Day to Remember Today’s Martyrs

My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord,

The Bishops of the United States (USCCB) have designated this Sunday, the Feast of Christ the King, as A Day of Prayer for Persecuted Christians. As we look at our world scene today, we recognize that the persecution of Christians around the world perhaps has never been more intense since the days of the early persecutions during the Roman Empire. It sounds hard to believe in 2017, however, it is true. The situation in the Middle East especially is very troubling.

Let’s Share Our Own Migration Stories

My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord,

This weekend in the Diocese we will be celebrating the annual Migration Day Mass at the Co-Cathedral of St. Joseph. Our celebration this year coincides with the campaign launch of Caritas Internationalis, supported by our Holy Father, Pope Francis, called “Share the Journey” (www.sharejourney.org).

United States: A Beacon of Hope

My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord,

My recent visit to Puerto Rico with Cardinal Timothy Dolan, to show solidarity, and offer assistance and support to Archbishop Roberto Gonzalez of San Juan and the other bishops of Puerto Rico brought home to me again memories of past visits to areas which experienced natural disasters.

For All the Saints and Souls

My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord,

This past week we celebrated three important days in our Church year. The Vigil of All Saints, commonly known as Halloween, which has become a secularized observance that soon may outspend the expenditures of Christmas itself. Halloween has become an opportunity for spending money on costumes, candies, pumpkins, and decorations which underneath it all is a search for spiritual meaning as I have interpreted this observance.

The Changing Face of Catechesis

My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord,

According to the USCCB National Directory for Catechesis, catechesis is an essential moment in the process of evangelization. It is important that each family set as a priority the passing on of the Faith. This, however, is often easier said than done, but we can never give up.

Columbus Was the Original Immigrant

My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord,

We just finished celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month. The word Hispanic, as we know, has been recently coined to cover immigrants from the 22 Latin-American countries and Spain who speak Spanish and are part of our nation.

Culture of Life Is an Uphill Battle

My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord,

For several generations, the Bishops of the United States have proclaimed the month of October “Respect Life Month,” for the respect of human life from its conception to its natural end in death. Last week’s horrific events in Las Vegas, the senseless mass murder, makes me think about the value of human life. It seems that life has become cheapened by the numerous murders that we hear about, especially this mass killing of over 50 people.

Join the Prayer for Migrants and Refugees

My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord,

Many times I have been asked about the importance of prayer in our lives as Catholics. Obviously, prayer is essential for us because it is our means of speaking to God, developing our relationship with God, and most importantly of discerning His will for us in our lives. Very simply, prayer is a dialogue with God who is our friend. Omnipotent as He is, He still wishes that we, His creatures, communicate with Him in our thoughts and especially affection for God who is our Creator, Redeemer and Sanctifier.

Natural Disasters Are Part of Original Sin

My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord,

The recent multiplicity of natural disasters, with Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria, and the earthquake in Mexico, have all come in less than a month’s time. These tragic events certainly lead us to consider why natural disasters occur.

A Busy Year for Religious Education

My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord,

To announce Catechetical Sunday, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops states, “This year, the Church will celebrate Catechetical Sunday on Sept. 17, 2017. This year’s theme will be ‘Living as Missionary Disciples.’ Those whom the community has designated to serve as catechists will be called forth to be commissioned for their ministry.