Youth news

High fives for fire safety

MERIDIAN – Firefighter Lee Bohl, with the city of the Meridian Fire Department, gives a “high five” to kindergarten student Kayleigh Johnson on Oct. 22 at St. Patrick School. Preschool and kindergarten students learned about fire safety and got a close up view of a fire truck. (Photo by Celeste Saucier)

Fun times in Vicksburg

VICKSBURG – students are ready for the Spooky Sprint 1-mile fun fun to start. (Photos by Rebecca Weatherford)

Chess masters in training

SOUTHAVEN – Lucas Delgado participated in the Sacred Heart School chess tournament on Saturday, Nov. 2. Lucas’s older brother Diego was the tournament champion. (Photo by Sister Margaret Sue Broker)

The Saints go marching

COLUMBUS – Annunciation sixth graders observed All Saints Day by presenting their Hall of Saints project to other students and visitors. Students worked on their Saints project for several weeks, learning about the lives of these special people in history. (Photo by Katie Fenstermacher)

Bearing Gifts

GREENVILLE – Students at St. Joe Greenville celebrate All Saints Day Mass with Father Aaron Williams. (Photo by Nikki Thompson)

Festivities around Diocese

MERIDIAN – On Nov. 2, St. Patrick School held their annual Variety Show fundraiser. The event was organized by Dr. Danny and Rory Santiago and featured many talented acts from the catholic community. Shown are members of the St. Patrick School staff from left, Montse Frias, principal, Helen Reynolds, Celeste Saucier, Lauren Walker and Sharon Shipman performing a routine to the song “I Will Follow Him” from the movie “Sister Act.” (Photo by Wade Saucier)
JACKSON – The St. Richard annual CardinalFest was a rockin’ hit on Oct. 27, with the Fondren Guitars students Rock Band performing. Pictured is former St. Richard student, Amelia Haydel singing and playing guitar, and Seamus Priest on drums. The Fondren Guitar Band is led by St. Richard alum and parent Patrick Harkins. (Photo by Tereza Ma)
GREENVILLE – The men of Sacred Heart fried fish for their annual Harvest Festival fundraiser on Saturday, Nov. 2. (Photo by Maurice Mosley)

MERIDIAN – Father Augustine in the Halloween spirit at his parish’s celebration. (Photo courtesy by St. Patrick)

COLUMBUS – Annunciation students trick or treat through classrooms. (Photo by Katie Fenstermacher)

JACKSON – On Oct. 29 school development directors met with chancery staff members Rebecca Harris and Joanna King. The team talked about strategy and upcoming events. (Photo by Tereza Ma)

Priest delivers powerful testimony during Homeland Security hearings

By Berta Mexidor
JACKSON – Father Odel Medina tugged at heartstrings as he read a letter written by a child pleading for his father’s freedom after being jailed since the federal agent raids on Mississippi last summer.
Missionary Servant Father Medina, pastor of St. Therese Kosciusko and St. Anne Carthage, was among the many people presenting testimonies and stories and expressing concerns during public hearings Nov. 7 in Tougaloo before U.S. House Committee on Homeland Security members.
Committee members attending the hearing included Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-MS), Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) and Rep. Al Green (D-TX.) Also on hand was Rep. Steven Cohen (D-TN), who heads up the House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Civil Liberties.
Looking back. More than 600 federal agents raided chicken processing plants across Mississippi Aug. 7 resulting in the arrests of 680 people. The Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raid was the largest statewide workplace operation in U.S. history with a price tag of $1.3 million so far according to reports.
For the most part, those arrested were not dangerous criminals, but rather workers in many cases outstaying their visas. There were six more serious charges involving domestic violence and two cases of battery that were reported but details were unclear. One recent report indicated that 300 are still living in detention.
In the aftermath of the raids, many are calling the operation inhuman and unnecessary. During hearings, Jere Miles, special agent in charge of the Homeland Security investigation office in New Orleans, was questioned on the project’s costs. Other questions directed at him focused on the timing and execution of operations that took place on the first day of school when children were heading back to classes after the summer break.
According to reports, only county school districts were contacted about the raids. Communications with other schools were lacking and left educational facilities in crisis management at the end of the day when the parents were not there to pick up their children. Reports say that ICE provided 11 phones for the more the 680 detainees to use on that day to get in touch with loved ones and to seek help.

Miles defended his agency saying that his office was incompliance with the law, and as a result of the raid, 400 cases of illegally use of SSN or identity theft were found. When Mississippi Catholic questioned Miles about the outcome of the raids, he said, “After this hearing and each raid, the agency tries to learn how to improve this kind of operation. We are taking all the suggestions, but there are some things we cannot change because we need to take care of our country,” he explained about the administration’s press on immigration and security and enforcement efforts.
Several Catholic communities of the Diocese of Jackson have been facing the consequences of the immigration raids over the past months. In emergency response and social justice efforts, the diocese has been working with parishes to provide assistance to families faced with hardships struggling to pay rent, buy food and pay bills after heads of households lost work due to the raids.
Father Medina is heading up long-term recovery efforts at crisis centers established as part of the diocese’s humanitarian aid efforts in coordination with Catholic Charities and other community organizations joining in the outreach. Help including financial assistance and legal advice is offered as part of outreach to families in the parishes and also residents living within the community-at-large touched by the raids.
Father Mike O’Brien, pastor of Sacred Heart in Canton, and Father Roberto Mena, Missionary Servants of the Most Holy Trinity and pastor of St. Michael Parish in Forest, are also part of the diocese’s humanitarian aid initiatives.
During the Tougaloo hearing, Father Medina gathered with community leaders who one-by-one shared their testimonies and concerns. They included Scott County Sheriff Mike Lee; Lorena Quiroz Lewis of Working Together Mississippi; Canton Mayor William Truly; Clift Johnson, director of MacArthur Justice Center at the University of Mississippi School of Law and Attorney Constance Slaughter-Harvey, president of the Board of Legacy Education and Empowerment Foundation.
One of the most troubling aspects of the raids on the minds of many speaking at the hearing is the difficult situations of the families, who are struggling to make ends meet. According to records, about 1,000 children are affected by the raids including the minors now without both parents and the ongoing psychological, economic and social effects. The language barrier between Guatemalan detainees, who speak Mam, a Mayan language, is also a concern that calls for special translators.
Monserrat Ramirez and Roberto Tijerina, members of Southerners on New Ground (SONG), broadcasted the hearing on the Facebook page of Mississippi Resiste, a grassroots organization dedicated to helping the immigrant community.
SONG’s activists from Mississippi and other states are uniting forces with South East Immigrant Rights Network. Together, they are creating a network of individuals including lawyers, local authorities and Catholic lay and priests giving time and talents to help families in need of assistance and to get back on their feet.
During hearings, Father Medina talked about the generous support received from people everywhere after the raids. Donations poured into Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Jackson from 40 different states and several organizations reflecting the compassion and concerns that the people of the United States of America have for the immigrant families of Mississippi now in crisis and seeking social justice, guidance and help.
Father Medina thanked members of the committee for his opportunity to speak on the behalf of people in the diocese’s family of parishes and to read the letter of the child from his own parish family hurting and traumatized in the aftermath of the raids. “I assure you of my prayers. God bless you,” said the priest with a heavy heart, as he closed his talk.

(Linda Reeves contributed to this story.)

Ley, tecnología y caridad

Por Berta Mexidor
RIDGELAND – El padre Odel Medina, sacerdote de St. Anne-Carthage y St. Therese-Kosciusko expresó las preocupaciones, frustraciones y esperanzas de su comunidad y del resto de los católicos de la diócesis, preocupados por las familias afectadas después de las redadas de inmigración, durante una audiencia pública celebrada por el congresista estadounidense Bennie Thompson, presidente demócrata del Comité de Seguridad Nacional, el jueves 7 en Tougaloo College, tres meses después de las redadas que arrestaron a 680 inmigrantes y que impactaron directamente a tres parroquias de la diócesis y siete comunidades en el estado.
El representante Thompson estuvo acompañado de la representante Sheila Jackson Lee, de Texas, el representante Al Green, Texas y Steve Cohen, Tennessee, todos demócratas y también miembros de su comité, para pedir cuentas a la Oficina de Investigación del Departamento de Seguridad Nacional de Nueva Orleans, representada por el agente especial Jere Miles.
Miles defendió a su agencia diciendo que cumplieron con la ley y como resultado de la redada se han encontrado 400 casos de uso ilegal del número de seguro social (SSN, por sus siglas en inglés) para robo de identidad. Al padre Odel se unieron seis líderes comunitarios, públicos, policiales y de organizaciones que tuvieron la oportunidad de expresar sus testimonios, dentro de los que estaba Lorena Quiroz Lewis, organizadora de Working Together Mississippi.

Durante la audiencia, Monserrat Ramírez y Roberto Tijerina, miembros de Southerners on New Ground (SONG) mostraron una habilidad tecnológica para ayudar a los hispanos a comprender la audiencia. Transmitieron la audiencia en la página de Facebook de Mississippi Resiste, y para aquellos que no pueden hablar inglés, hubo un número de teléfono al que podían llamar y recibir la traducción al momento.
Decenas de personas portaron carteles con mensajes como” Dejennos trabajar”, “Vinimos a Trabajar, Progresar y Amar” y “A más redadas, mas familias separadas.”

Required Financial Practices in Diocese of Jackson

(Editors note: The following is an excerpt from the “Diocese of Jackson, Parish Finance Council, Decree and Guidelines” of the Required Financial Practices section, that details how financial donations are to be handled and accounted for in the Diocese of Jackson.)

Financial Reporting
a) Record financial transactions and prepare financial statements: Financial transactions are recorded and monthly financial statements are prepared using ParishSoft ConnectNow Accounting software.

b) Financial records: All financial records documenting transactions should be available to the parish as needed. Records should not be kept offsite at the residences of employees or volunteers where access to the financial records may be limited. Financial records are the property of the parish and must be kept on the parish premises.

c) Regular financial report preparation: Financial reporting is made regularly and timely to facilitate control and corrective action. The financial reports should be presented in detail capturing bank accounts held at local financial institutions and Diocese accounts (not just operating accounts) and debt obligations. Financial statements should contain all activity of the Parish.

d) Communication of financial results: Parish financial results are reported each month to the pastor and finance council. In addition, results should be shared with parishioners on at least an annual basis including sources and amounts of income, parish debt obligations, unpaid bills and parish savings.

Sunday and Holy Day Collections
a) Count teams: Collection bags should be maintained in the safe until the next business day when the count team is assembled and ready to begin counting. At least two (preferably three) unrelated people, not employees, should be present when collections are counted. No one should ever sort and organize money prior to the arrival of the count team.

b) Proper rotation of count team duties and members: Multiple count teams that are periodically rotated should count collections. If there is only a single count team, then count duties should be rotated.

c) Collections are handled properly: All checks are restrictively endorsed during counting procedures, and a cash collection report is compiled and signed by each of the count team members. It is helpful to establish written cash handling guidelines indicating names and duties of team members.

d) Adequate physical safeguards: All cash receipts should be deposited intact daily or locked in a safe and deposited the next day. Limit entry to the safe to two people requiring such access, each should have the safe combination and/or key. The safe combination and/or key should be adequately safeguarded. Use your bank’s drop bag process whenever possible to ensure safe/timely deposit of funds.

e) Segregating collection duties: Ideally, different individuals complete the receiving, processing, recording and bank reconciliation functions. This option is not always possible especially if there are only one or two individuals available to perform these duties. Separate and rotate these duties among the available people as much as possible. Perhaps the pastor, or a volunteer parishioner with the proper background, can perform or review one of these functions monthly.

f) Parishioner contribution statements: Someone who is independent of the counting, depositing and recording of collections prepares and distributes year-end parishioner statements whenever possible. Reported variances between the donation and collection are investigated and resolved.

g) Tracking parishioner contributions: Do not back date envelopes to the Sunday date printed on the envelope; use the date of the collection. For instance, families submitting multiple envelopes (for previous Sundays on one Sunday) should be entered with the Sunday date on which the multiple envelopes were received, not the date printed on the envelopes.

h) Reviewing parishioner donor contribution summary report: Periodically (quarterly) print the donor contribution summary report and compare it to the Sunday collection worksheets for accuracy. Make corrections as needed.

(If you suspect proper procedure is not being followed with regard to church donations, call Nancy Meyers (601) 960-8458, Cathy Pendelton (601) 969-2135 or Carolyn Callahan (601) 346-6038)

Celebration of great life of Greenville priest

GREENVILLE – Paul bearers carry Father Frank Corcoran at his funeral on Friday, Oct. 25 at St. Francis church. (Photo by Sandra Cirilli)

By Jordan Nettles
GREENVILLE – On Friday, Oct. 25, loved ones gathered at St. Joseph Church in Greenville, Miss. for the funeral Mass of Rev. Jeremiah Francis Corcoran, known lovingly as Father Frank. Father Frank passed away on Oct. 17 at Delta Regional Medical Center at the age of 88.
Born in Nenagh Co. Tipperary, Ireland to a devout Catholic family, Father Frank answered a call from God to bring the Gospel to Mississippi, where he served for 65 years as a priest. In answering that initial call, he offered a resounding “yes” to God, which he continued to offer throughout his many years of ceaseless prayer and service.
The sanctuary in Greenville was packed with fellow priests, former parishioners, and friends and family members of Father Frank. Among the congregation were two of Father Frank’s nieces from Ireland, Michael Shalloe and Eimear O’Farrell. The service began with loving words from both of them.
“Today is a celebration of a great life,” said Shalloe, setting a tone for a Mass that would remember and honor the life of Father Frank. She recalled her uncle’s great love for family saying, “Family, to Father Frank, was everything.” O’Farrell spoke in Gaelic for several minutes, with a nod to loved ones watching the live-stream from Ireland.
Bishop Joseph Kopacz presided over the Mass and led concelebrants to the altar to the processional hymn, “Joyful, Joyful, We Adore You.” Father Mark Shoffner, Parochial Vicar at St. Mary Basilica and Assumption of The Blessed Virgin Mary in Natchez, gave the Homily.
Father Shoffner, who grew up in Greenville, spoke with love and humor about Father Frank. “Today we gather for Father Frank, one who golfed, and ate, and prayed, and ate some more,” he began. Father Shoffner then spoke in detail about the example Father Frank set for the many people whose lives he touched, often in a deeply personal way through the holy sacraments.
“It is important for us to live a life ordered towards God,” Father Shoffner said. “That is the great end in all of us, is to be ordered towards Him whom created us, who willed us forward from Himself. And [Father Frank] was showing that, and we know in his story has lived that, as an example.”
Father Shoffner highlighted Father Frank’s devotion to prayer and his acceptance of God’s plan, which led him to bring the word of God to communities thousands of miles away from his own in Ireland. “We’re blessed by that example,” Father Shoffner said. “He gave us a picture of fidelity, and that is what the Lord asks of us. A life of fidelity.”
Father Frank began his priesthood in Pascagoula, Miss. in 1954. He served across the state, also taking assignments in Jackson, Vicksburg, Meridian, Greenville, Crystal Springs and Hazlehurst. He retired to Greenville, Miss. in 2004.
Father Frank planned his own funeral, down to the hymns that should be sung and the priest who should give the Homily. This included informing Father Shoffner that he wanted him to preach at the funeral, before Father Shoffner was even in seminary.
Of course in the midst of sadness, there was great joy at the Mass, as well. As Father Shoffner pointed out, “He’s able to behold God [in] a way he has never been able to see Him before.”

(Jordan Nettles is the Marketing Assistant and Digital Publishing Coordinator at University Press of Mississippi. She graduated from the The University of Southern Mississippi and attends St. Richard Church.)

Youth news

St. Patrick students get creative

MERIDIAN – St. Patrick Catholic School students in fourth through sixth grades participated in the annual Knights of Columbus – Council 802 Creative Contraption contest. Each student was given identical bags with various items to create functioning contraptions. First place winners were fourth grader, Anthony Hopson; fifth grader, Elizabeth Crudup; and sixth grader, Stephen Wilson. They each received a $10 movie gift card from the Knights of Columbus. (Left) Freeda Ramirez, a sixth grade student at St. Patrick School, demonstrates her Creative Contraption to KC member John Harwell, on left and KC Grand Knight David Viger.(Below) Fourth grader, Tytan Duong demonstrates his Creative Contraption to KC Grand Knight David Viger. (Photos by Celeste Saucier)

Apple bobbing time

GREENVILLE – Sacred Heart church held a picnic for the youth of the Catholic children of the city to bring about support and fellowship of the future leaders. Featured activities included bobbing for applies. (Photo by Maurice Mosley)

Recess time fun

COLUMBUS – On Oct. 16, Father Jeffrey Waldrep stopped by the Annunciation school playground to visit with students. (Photo by Katie Fenstermacher)

Little leaders

NATCHEZ – Cathedral School fourth grade students, Jordan Stubbs, Grant Carlton, Adeline Burget and Leah Tillman, led a Natchez Board of Supervisors meeting with the pledge of allegiance. (Photo by Cara Serio)

Learning is better together

MADISON – St. Anthony fifth graders Katie Venable and Murphy Moorehead explain the properties of Uranus to second graders Ben Schenk and Ava Archer. (Photo by Michele Warnock)

Purple Dress Run supports domestic violence shelter and programs

JACKSON – About 200 runners and walkers grabbed their running shoes and purple dresses for Catholic Charities 8th annual Purple Dress Run at the District at Eastover in Northeast Jackson on Thursday, Oct. 17 in honor of National Domestic Violence Awareness month. Racers ran and walked through the Eastover neighborhood to raise awarness about domestic violence and to raise money for Catholic Charities newly opened domestic violence shelter.

Youth news

Pinwheels for peace at St. Patrick Meridian

MERIDIAN – St. Patrick School recently held its annual Pinwheels for Peace program in celebration of International Day of Peace.
Students were chosen to write essays on what peace meant to them and pinwheels were placed in front of the school with messages of hope and peace.
Shown placing their pinwheels are Mrs. Palmer’s third grade students Helena Rutledge, Miles Whitman, Reese Ann Gressett and Victoria Ramirez. (Photo by Helen Reynolds)

Fighting Irish football

GREENVILLE – Bishop Kopacz enjoyed a night of Fighting Irish football at St. Joseph school. (Photo by Nikki Thompson)

Math gets technical

JACKSON – Sister Thea Bowman school students Khamari, Harry and J’Zarrio are concentrating hard to solve math problems using their tech tablets. (Photo courtsey of school)

Firefighters visit promotes fire safety first

COLUMBUS – First grade students at Annunciation school enjoyed a visit from local fire fighters who discussed fire safety and the importance of an evacuation plan in an emergency situation. (Photo by Katie Fenstermacher)

Field trip fun

GREENVILLE – Greenville’s St. Joseph fourth through sixth graders got to attend Native American Day at Winterville Mounds on Oct. 10. They learned a lot about the Native American culture and also got to make a few crafts. Fun was had by all! (Photo by Nikki Thompson)

Grandparents breakfast at St. Thea Bowman

JACKSON – Sister Thea Bowman school grandparents Cathy Pendleton and Shirley and Phil Thiac enjoyed a nice breakfast with their grandchildren at the annual “We Love Our Grandparents Breakfast.” (Photo courtesy of school)

V Encuentro en Mobile, Respondiendo con Alegría

Por Berta Mexidor
MOBILE – Con Misa celebrada por el arzobispo Thomas Rodi de la Arquidiócesis de Mobile, en la iglesia Santa Catalina de Siena, el sábado 12 de octubre, comenzó el V Encuentro Provincial en el que participaron 16 delegados de la Diócesis de Jackson.

MOBILE – En Misa celebrada por Arzobispo Rodi a delegados provinciales el sábado Oct.12 (i-d) Diácono Ronnie Hathorne, canciller de la diócesis de Mobile; padre Marco A. Sánchez, ST from St Joseph Holy Trinity, Alabama; padre Everardo Mora Torres, Sacred Heart, Pascagoula, MS; Monseñor James S. Kee, J.V., S.T.L., J.C.L., Vicario Judicial, archidiócesis de Mobile; arzobispo Thomas Rodi de la archidiócesis de Mobile; diácono Hector Donastorg, director de la oficina Ministerio Hispano de la Diócesis de Mobile y padre Capo, director del SEPI. (Fotos por Berta Mexidor)

El evento fue convocado por el Southeast Pastoral Institute (SEPI), bajo el tema “Latinos respondiendo con Alegría de ser discípulos misioneros”. El arzobispo Rodi concelebró la Misa con sacerdotes de la provincia y el padre Capo, director del SEPI ofreció la homilía.
El padre Capo, quien celebró además en ese día 33 años de ordenación, recordó el lema del evento” Discípulos misioneros testigos del amor de Dios” y llamo a tos a sequir los tres mandatos: Llamados, Formados y Enviados, que fueron definidos en la carta pastoral del obispo Robert J. Baker, S.T.D. por el 50 Aniversario de la Diócesis de Birgmingham, Al. El padre capo reafirmó”…no hemos sido elegidos para guardar los conocimientos para nosotros sino para …dar el mensaje a toda la Iglesia y ser, como dice el Papa, ‘Iglesia en salida.’ El ejemplo de ser misionero es Maria.
Los delegados de la Diócesis de Jackson se unieron, en alabanza y día de trabajo en equipos, a las delegaciones de las diócesis de Biloxi, Birmingham y Mobile, para continuar el proceso de consulta y análisis que se deriva del V Encuentro Nacional, celebrado el Texas en octubre 2018 para responder a las necesidades de la creciente comunidad Hispana. Según el censo de 2010, la población hispana para 2050 podría llegar a 132.8 millones en los Estados Unidos. El censo de 2010 muestra que el 68 por ciento de los hispanos son católicos.
Un dato del Instituto de Investigación Pew, publicado en 2016, mostró un crecimiento del 129 por ciento desde el 2000, en los Hispanos en Mississippi. Con alrededor de 85 mil latinos con una edad promedio de 26 años en 2016, los Latinosrepresentaron el tres por ciento de la población del estado.
Jackson es la diócesis más grande al este del río Mississippi. Los católicos sólo comprenden el 2.3 por ciento de la población y son atendidos en 72 parroquias y 26 misiones y capillas repartidas en 38,000 millas cuadradas. Al menos 27 parroquias ofrecen misa en español. Los sacerdotes bilingües, los líderes comunitarios y los catequistas son la fuente para llegar a la creciente población Hispana.
Los representantes de las cuatro diócesis de la provincia de Mobile: Birmingham, Biloxi, Jackson y Mobile se reunieron en pequeños grupos para analizar cada una de las trece áreas ministeriales, que fueron a la vez discutidas y analizadas antes a nivel nacional. En video mensaje el Monseñor Felipe de Jesus Estévez, obispo de St Augustine y obispo líder de la región XIV, exhortó”…Manos a la obra.”
Los delegados recibieron el documento de trabajo con las conclusiones y recomendaciones para cada área. Estas trece áreas son la base para la discusión de temas y propuestas de soluciones:
Evangelización y misión; Corresponsabilidad y desarrollo; Pastoral familiar; Pastoral con jóvenes adultos; Formación en la fe y catequesis; Desarrollo de liderazgo y capacitación pastoral; Liturgia y espiritualidad; Inmigración; Vocaciones; Educación católica(K12); Solidaridad global; Pastoral escolar y universitaria; y Capacidades interculturales.
En cada mesa se valoraron cada una de las estrategias propuestas a nivel nacional y regional en base a su peso en el acrónimo PULGAR: Profético, Urgente, efecto a Largo plazo, efecto Global, realista o Alcanzable y a su impacto Reproductor.Después de este análisis, cada una de las mesas escogió las tres estrategias que, al parecer del equipo, fueron las más importantes a ser tenidas en cuenta.
Cada una de estas respuestas, de cada una de las provincias del sureste, serán compiladas por SEPI, y sometidas a la Conferencia de Obispos de Estados Unidos (USCCB, por sus siglas en inglés). SEPI es la organización que lleva las directivas de la USCCB al sureste del país. En los documentos de SEPI se puede encontrar su misión como la organización” …que coordina y apoya el Ministerio Hispano en las 30 diócesis del sureste, …por medio de los tres pilares de Evangelización, Formación y Comunión, su rama formativa. SEPI se esfuerza en facilitar la plena participación de los latinos en la misión de la iglesia y la sociedad…”
La última parte del evento se dedicó a una consulta sobre el tema de los jóvenes en cara al futuro, después del Sínodo de los Obispos sobre “Los jóvenes, la fe y el discernimiento vocacional” celebrado en octubre del 2018, la carta Cristo Vive (Christus vivit) y a las conclusiones sobre los jóvenes que arrojo el V Encuentro. La opinión sobre el trabajo con y para los jóvenes fue recogida generacionalmente: un grupo estuvo compuesto por líderes jóvenes activos que trabajan con jóvenes o con la Pastoral Juvenil, otro grupo para el conjunto de personas menores de 35 años y al otro extremo el grupo de los menos jóvenes, quienes a su vez son padres de familia o laicos en general preocupados por el futuro de la iglesia en manos de las nuevas generaciones.
La hermana Claudia Ines Crisostomo de Biloxi explicó a los de su mesa las diferentes vocaciones religiosas que existen y dijo” Las vocaciones nacen en la familia,” recordando como su abuela la influyó solo con su ejemplo de oración y ayuda dentro de la iglesia.
La hermana Rosa María Reyes, MGSpS y el padre Everardo, es sus respectivas mesas también tocaron el tema de las vocaciones (Matrimonio, Soltería, Sacerdocio y Vida Consagrada) ilustrando cómo era el día a día de la vida religiosa y sacerdotal y como además del sacrificio del servicio, incluía también momentos de alegría. Consuelo Palacios de la diócesis de Birmingham expresó que “Los padres debemos ser educados para ayudar a los hijos a encontrar su vocación”
Al final, los delegados presentaron sus conclusiones en asamblea y se despidieron con el compromiso de realizar reuniones como ésta a nivel parroquial y diocesano, hasta llegar al próximo Encuentro regional a realizarse en octubre del 2020.
Todos, al final, se llevaron la idea que la esencia del Encuentro es la definición del cardinal Seán Patrick O’Malley, arzobispo de Boston, quien en video dijo que la misión de Encuentro es ”Evangelizar…y transmitir la fe a las nuevas generaciones.”