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Lent and Easter have been a blessing this year (’15) here in Eastern Venezuela at our mission parish of Jesucristo Resucitado.  As with all Christians, this is THE central time for us. The people coming to the Sacraments are clinging to Jesus as their country struggles around them. Easter Sunday is also our parish feast day when the Bishop comes for Mass after the festive 1/2 hour procession to church through the barrio.  This is followed by a parish party of food, music dances and laughter.

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This past Holy Week we were blessed with a visit from St. Paul Seminary’s Vice Rector Fr. Peter Williams.  He took part in everything possible, including the five hour Good Friday Way of the Cross through the entire 11-barrios of the parish.  We were treated to two plates of cooked turtle to replenish our energies.  This is a treat this time of year.

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I took the youth group to the ruins of the first Capuchin mission here just after Easter week.  We studied the life of San Felix, the 16th century Capuchin for whom this town is named.  He used to say thanks be to God so much (“deo gratias”) that when people saw him approaching they said “here comes Brother Deo Gratias!!”  This is a challenge to us here and across the world to receive all from our loving Father as a gift.

God’s blessings, Fr. James and all the parish.