Christian Faith in Action

Words of the Priest / Palabras del Sacerdote

Grace to you, Brothers and Sisters:

As the weather has become more friendly to a Colombian like me, I have started to bike on Sunday afternoons before the evening mass. I usually go for an hour or so bike ride. I love enjoying the great weather and seeing families in the park having a good time. This past Sunday, it was great to see lots of people out. There was a great diversity of people. It was a nice reminder that we are a diverse city and diversity is great. There was all kind of activities: fishing, baseball, soccer, grilling, walking, biking-- everyone doing their thing. The image that I took home was inspiring and made me reflect on the feast that we are going to celebrate on Sunday, Pentecost.  Pentecost was that great moment in which the Holy Spirit descended on our Blessed Mother and the apostles. To some theologians the Church began that day of Pentecost. The apostles knew from that point on that the mission was theirs and they needed to take leadership in preaching the Kingdom of God. Pentecost has always been seen as a moment of renewal and new beginnings for the Church.

As we approach the feast of Pentecost and as we are moving into a new beginning in leadership in our Catholic Community in Central Racine, I want to share with you, in the context of Pentecost/new beginning, an idea that I have for our three parishes in Central Racine. I want us to allow the Holy Spirit to shake us up and renew our discipleship commitment in our faith communities. I have been working on this idea for a while with Eloy and a group of great and faithful people to create a comprehensive Evangelization effort for our communities of faith. This Evangelization Outreach Program has four different areas:

  1. GIFS (God Incarnate in Faithful Students). This component focuses on a program for middle schoolers to enrich their faith and help them recognize God’s image in themselves. We have three great resources for this activity in our parishes: Our Lady of Grace Academy, John XXIII Center and Renaissance School.
  2. ACTS. You all know the efforts that Eloy puts into working with high schoolers. The idea will be to include high schoolers in a program that helps them give back to the community. The focus will be service. We will get those in confirmation classes and others involved and committed to serving others.
  3. Young LINKS. This group will focus on keeping youth connected with a faith community, as they navigate the transition into college and work. As I was sitting in confirmation mass last April, I saw all the young people being confirmed and I realized that as parish communities we don’t have anything to offer them other than participating in mass and sacraments. Hence, my desire to create a fluid group/ministry with them so we keep connected with them wherever they are. In this group the youth will have a link to the parish and faith community.
  4. Belle City Catholics. This program will target Catholics above 21 years old who will gather around the table to share some snacks and a drink as they participate on a formation topic. This is sort of a “Theology on Tap” concept for Catholics in Racine, especially within our three parishes in the Catholic Community in Central Racine. This program has the potential to reach beyond our parish boundaries to those who would be interested in participating in it.

These four efforts will make up the bulk of my priorities for the Catholic Community in Central Racine for the upcoming year. I want in a year from now to look back and see that the Holy Spirit has produced much fruit in these four different areas. I am counting on the support of staff, volunteers, pastoral councils, and all of you to make this happen. Let us renew our parish communities in Central Racine.


Juan M Camacho

Gracia a ustedes hermanos y hermanas:

A medida que el clima se ha vuelto más amigable para un colombiano como yo; empecé a andar en bicicleta el domingo por la tarde antes de la misa de 6PM. Por lo general, voy a dar un paseo en bicicleta por una hora. Me encanta disfrutar del buen clima y ver a las familias en el parque pasar un buen rato. El domingo pasado fue genial ver a mucha gente afuera. Había una gran diversidad de personas. Fue un buen recordatorio de que somos una ciudad diversa y la diversidad es genial. Hacían todo tipo de actividades: pescar, jugar béisbol, fútbol, ​​parrilladas, caminaban, andaban en bicicleta, todos pasándola bien con su familia. La imagen que me llevé a casa fue inspiradora y me hizo reflexionar sobre la fiesta que vamos a celebrar el domingo. Pentecostés. Pentecostés fue ese gran momento en el que el Espíritu Santo descendió sobre nuestra Santísima Madre y los apóstoles. Para algunos teólogos, la Iglesia comenzó ese día en Pentecostés. Los apóstoles supieron desde ese momento que la misión era de ellos y necesitaban asumir el liderazgo en la predicación del Reino de Dios. Pentecostés en la Iglesia ha sido sinónimo de renovación y nuevos comienzos para la Iglesia.

A medida que nos acercamos a la fiesta de Pentecostés y nos adentramos en un nuevo comienzo en el liderazgo de nuestra comunidad católica en el Centro de Racine. Quiero invitarlos que permitamos que el Espíritu Santo nos sacuda y renueve nuestro compromiso de discipulado en nuestras comunidades de fe. La comunidad Hispana de San Patricio tiene muchos grupos y movimientos. Una de las cosas que me gustaría es ver mayor unidad entre todos nosotros. Veo que hay muchos deseos de competencia y eso no es saludable para la fe y la vida de la parroquia. La diversidad de grupos y ministerios es fruto del Espíritu Santo pero la animadversión y división es producto del maligno. Les exhorto en este Pentecostés a vivir una vida más armónica en el Espíritu sabiendo que todos somos miembros del mismo Cuerpo. Miembros de la misma Iglesia de Cristo. Me gustaría que tomáramos este Pentecostés como momento de reflexión para poder cada uno de nosotros aportar nuestro granito de arena para la construcción del Reino.

Ánimos y que El Espíritu Santo nos guíe e ilumine.


Juan M Camacho