|Dear NCCHM Members, Friends, and Sponsors,
Paz y bien. I pray my message finds you well and in good health.
On behalf of the National Catholic Council for Hispanic Ministry (NCCHM) and the Board of Directors, I want to invite you to the NCCHM 2020 Annual Meeting.
The NCCHM 2020 Annual Meeting will convene online on December 3-4, 2020. We invite you to join as we gather in Pastoral de Conjunto to celebrate the journey to NCCHM 30th Anniversary and Raices y Alas 2021 to be celebrated in Washington, DC on Sept.22-26,2020. National leaders in Hispanic ministry will gather in Pastoral de Conjunto under the theme: Prophetic Voices: Ser Puentes Para Una Nueva Epoca.
Over 70 national leaders from 63 organizations, dioceses, religious communities, pastoral institutes, universities, and the USCCB are serving in teams and committees planning a National Catholic Congress on Hispanic Ministry. When we gathered at the end of October to officially launch our teams and committees on the road to Raices y Alas 2021, we were blessed to hear from Mar Muñoz Visoso, Executive Director of the Committee for Cultural Diversity in the Church. In that meeting, she not only inspired us to dream big she told us, “Knowing that we are loved and sent, we embark once again on this journey of Raíces y Alas knowing that the Lord accompanies us and that He will guide this boat and bring it to a good and safe port as long as we let ourselves be guided by His Spirit. So now it is our time as leaders to reflect on “what we have seen and heard” and to get our hands dirty. Es tiempo de ponernos manos a la obra, y trabajar en pastoral de conjunto para llevar a cabo la misión de la Iglesia y construir puentes de hermandad entre nosotros mismos y con toda la Iglesia. It is time to build and expand bridges among ourselves, the Hispanic people, and with the brothers and sisters of other cultures, ethnic groups and even those of other Christian denominations and other faiths, in the name of the common good. It is our responsibility to acquire the wisdom and the competencies, including the intercultural competencies, to be able to carry out the mission of the Church in this particular context in the United States.” I have shared Mar’s entire message to the teams and committees in Puentes so that she may inspire and lift others as she did with us.
In October, Pope Francis gifted us with the Encyclical Fratelli Tutti on Fraternity and Social Friendship, a beautiful letter of love and heart on all levels of humanity from the Holy Father. Such a level of fraternity and friendship begins with honest, open, and respectful dialogue. Indeed, “in a true spirit of dialogue, we grow in our ability to grasp the significance of what others say and do, even if we cannot accept it as our own conviction. In this way, it becomes possible to be frank and open about our beliefs, while continuing to discuss, to seek points of contact, and above all, to work and struggle together”. Fratelli Tutti No 203.
As national pastoral leaders who work, serve, or are involved in one way or another in Hispanic ministry we called not only to embrace the mission we have been called to but embrace each other in caring and respectful dialogue. So I invite you to join us on December 3-4, at the NCCHM 2020 Annual Meeting to reflect on our roots and embrace our wings as we move forward to convene a National Catholic Congress on Hispanic Ministry.
Mar added, “We are a people that understands justice, mercy, and compassion. Prior generations fought very hard and suffered a lot to get us where we are today. We must not forget our roots, and we must learn from those who came before us, for it will help us to tackle the problems, sufferings, and various crises of the present generation. At the same time, it is our turn to respond in faith and with prophetic zeal, to envision a future of hope for us and our children, for our Church and our world.
In our website you will find the NCCHM 2020 Annual Meeting Program and the Registration link. I invite you to join us in a celebration of past and future. We have a group of leaders and speakers who will inspire us for the mission ahead.
Please know that you, your ministries, and families are all in the prayers of the NCCHM Board of Directors. We continue to live under a pandemic that continues to surge. We pray for the health and safety of you and your families and may the Lord comfort those who have lost loved ones to COVID. The Board also continues to work hard to ensure NCCHM continues to service its mission and vision of advocacy, education, networking, and leadership.
Thank you for all you do in the service of God’s people and for your support to NCCHM.
Un fuerte abrazo en Cristo,