Looking back on 2019, St. Clare Catholic Church was able to accomplish a lot, according to Youth Minister Peter Damour. The parish experienced many firsts during its 95th anniversary that helped bring the community together and allowed children, teens, and young adults to have fun and grow in their faith.
Nearly 50 years ago, St. Clare parish was on the cusp of a cultural and ethnic transition when the original settlers in the area moved out while an influx of new settlers from the Caribbean islands moved in. Fast forward to 2019 and a thriving community of Catholics from an array of Afro-Caribbean backgrounds hold steadfast to the unifying thread of their cultural upbringing: their faith.
Under the conditions of discipleship, Jesus asked those who wish come after Him to deny themselves, take up their cross and follow Him. For Angelica Taveras, the consistent restlessness in her heart became such an intricate, detailed conversation with God that she told Him if she were to trade her comfortable, corporate-world salary and work for the Church, three particular criteria would have to be met. Did God deliver?
On any given Sunday, observing the Sabbath is a choice. For three Hispanic youth who have spent their formative teen years in the youth group at St. Joan of Arc parish, Jackson Heights, they freely choose to attend Mass.