WARSAW — Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades congratulated the first participants to receive certificates from the Educación Para el Ministerio Program Saturday, June 18, at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church and Diocesan Shrine in Warsaw.
Bishop Rhoades also celebrated Mass for the program participants and their families. The Mass was concelebrated by Society of Divine Word Father Jesús Briones, Holy Cross Father J. Steele, Father Constantino Rocha and Father Eloy Jimenez.
The Educación Para el Ministerio Program in Spanish has been a two-year program that has educated up to 100 participants who attended classes at the Archbishop Noll Catholic Center. Comparable to the Education for Ministry program, the classes were offered with consideration of Hispanic culture and language.
The June 18 graduating class was diverse in many ways — culture, language, intergenerational Roman Catholics with a wide variety of backgrounds. Many who received their Education for Ministry certificate rejoiced in their first graduation ever. The smiles, happiness and joy inundated the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe, making for an environment of true Eucharistic celebration.
The Educación Para el Ministerio Program is a joint collaboration by the Office for Hispanic Ministry and the Office of Catechesis, in response to bishop’s request.
Blessed Pope John Paul II, in his letter “Ecclesia en America,” wrote, “The parish must continue to be above all a Eucharistic community … (which) implies that parishes are to be welcoming and fraternal, places of Christian initiation, of education in and celebration of the faith, open to the full range of charisms, services and ministries, organized in a communal and responsible way, capable of utilizing existing movements of the apostolate, attentive to the cultural diversity of the people, open to pastoral projects which go beyond the individual parish, and alert to the world in which they live.”
“We are grateful to God and Mother Mary for the first graduating class of Educación Para el Ministerio 2011, and are looking foward to future participants for the greater glory of God’s people,” said Lourdes Silva, associate director of the Office of Hispanic Ministry for the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend.
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