Archive for category General

Pope calls for peace in Venezuela

In a recent article in The Catholic Spirit, Pope Francis prayed for peace in Venezuela:

“In front of the grave situation (Venezuela) is going through, I ask the Lord that a just and peaceful solution may be sought and achieved to overcome the crisis,” he said.

Read the full story in The Catholic Spirit.

Venezuelan Mission Featured in The Catholic Spirit

The August 23, 2018 issue of The Catholic Spirit features an article about the current situation and needs in Venezuela, as well as local efforts to support Jesucristo Resucitado. Read the article online here.

Faced with suffering, parishioners find hope and joy in the Resurrection

Easter Sunday at the mission parish was a day of prayer, processing in the streets, dancing, family and friends. Easter is also the parish’s feast day, whose title, the Church of “Jesucristo Resucitado,” means “Jesus Christ is Risen.” Celebrating the hope of the Resurrection has been a vital source of strength for parishioners who feel discouraged and suffer from the country’s ongoing political unrest.

Holy Week in Venezuela was a tumultuous time with riots and protests that only continue to escalate. Large numbers opposed to the government are calling for President Maduro to step down. You can read more about these protests by clicking here: Venezuela Protests Explained.

A member of the mission parish, when asked how she is dealing with everything going on in the country, explained, “The truth is that all of us are affected, because this situation is difficult and the government does not want to hold any elections–which would be the best non-violent way out of this disaster. It is very sad what is happening, but we trust in God that he will guide us on the road of truth and bring us to a solution.”

Many in the country continue to go hungry and are without access to proper medical care. At the mission parish in San Felix, many look to the Church for support. The priests at the mission parish, Fr. Greg Schaffer and Fr. James Peterson, as well as many lay leaders, go out daily to visit different neighborhoods and homes simply to be present with the people, offer Mass and prayer, and provide practical support. The parish soup kitchen and medical clinic are also available to anyone in the community. Many local parishes and schools from the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis have gathered basic supplies for the mission parish that Fr. Greg and Fr. James bring to Venezuela to distribute to those most in need.

Despite being hard-pressed for food and basic necessities, the people are marked by a profound hope and faith. Fr. Greg remarked that this year’s Holy Week services had “record numbers” of people participating. The joy and hope of Christ’s Resurrection truly is their strength. In solidarity, let us remember the mission parish and the country of Venezuela in our thoughts and prayers.

Blessing 1 - Fr. Greg

Easter Procession 4

Celebrating Easter - Dancers 6

Celebrating Easter - Dancers pose

Celebrating Easter - Dancers 2

Venezuelan bishops call for civil disobedience in constitutional crisis

Please keep the people of Venezuela in prayer during this time of strife. Jesús, en ti confío.

Venezuelan bishops call for civil disobedience in constitutional crisis

Fr. Greg Schaffer put in charge of the Diocese of Ciudad Guayana

On top of his duties as pastor of the Venezuelan Mission, Fr. Schaffer was appointed to administer the Diocese of Ciudad Guayana until Pope Francis names a new bishop. Read more about what this means for the parish, Fr. Schaffer, and Fr. Peterson in a recent article published in the Catholic Spirit:

Father Schaffer put in charge of diocese in Venezuela

Hanging with TC at Target Field, final weekend in MN

Yesterday our Venezuelan Mission tour group sang the 7th inning stretch at the Minnesota Twins game. First baseman Miguel Cabrera for the Detroit Tigers, a Venezuela native, was excited to see the group and took pictures with them after the game.

This weekend, Fr. Peterson will preach about the mission parish at the Masses at Guardian Angels in Oakdale. The group will assist with music. On Sunday, the group will also be at the 12:45 p.m. Spanish Mass at St. Odilia in Shoreview and will perform a few songs after Mass.

Any questions about the group’s performances can be directed to Shannon Conroy at conroys@archspm.org.

 

tc-pjr2016

 

Venezuelan parishioners visiting Minnesota!

 

¡Saludos y muchas bendiciones a ti!

Greetings and many blessings to you!

 

A group of parishioners from our Venezuelan Mission Parish is in Minnesota visiting schools and parishes throughout the archdiocese. The group consists of talented musicians and they are performing traditional Venezuelan dances. The group will be singing the 7th inning stretch at the Minnesota Twins vs. Detroit Tigers game this Wednesday, September 21.

Fr. James Peterson, the associate pastor at the Mission Parish of Jesucristo Resucitado, will be celebrating the Masses at Guardian Angels in Oakdale this coming weekend. The group will assist with music.

 

For more information, please contact Shannon Conroy at conroys@archspm.org or 651-290-1630.

 

Tuesday, September 20

Visit Holy Family Catholic High School, Victoria

Wednesday, September 21

Visit the Little Sisters of the Poor, Saint Paul

7:10 PM Sing 7th Inning Stretch at Minnesota Twins Game

Thursday, September 22

7:00 PM Presentation at St. George, Long Lake

Saturday, September 24

5:00 PM Mass at Guardian Angels, Oakdale

Sunday, September 25

7:30 AM Mass at Guardian Angels, Oakdale

9:00 AM Mass at Guardian Angels, Oakdale

11:00 AM Mass at Guardian Angels, Oakdale

 

twins-game

 

For ways you can help:

See the “You can help” tab above for a list of supplies needed to send down to the Venezuelan Mission.

Parish teams up with the Puerto Ordaz Symphony

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Some of the benefits of the Parish of Jesucristo Resucitado’s new relationship with the Puerto Ordaz Symphony were evident in a beautiful Christmas concert put on by the children of Jesucristo Resucitado and their teacher Marbella Salazar.  Marbella has been a parishioner of the Parish of Jesucristo Resucitado all her life. When Fr. Dennis Dempsey was serving the mission parish, he encouraged Marbella to pursue her interest in music and taught her how to play the guitar.  She and her sister joined our Sunday morning choir.  Today Marbella is an instructor for the Puerto Ordaz Symphony.  Marbella received permission from the symphony to set up a satellite classroom in our parish.  Although Marbella had been working with the children (ages 5 to 10) for only three months, they put on a beautiful concert filled with singing, percussion and an arrangement of flutes and cuatros (four-stringed guitars).  It was quite impressive the number of songs they performed so enthusiastically and competently with so few lessons.  I am very grateful to Marbella and the Puerto Ordaz Symphony for offering these music classes free of charge in our parish and for the generous people of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis who through their donations have helped to purchase some of the musical instruments for the children.

Fr. Greg Schaffer, Pastor

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Choir Christmas Concert 2

Alabado sea Jesucristo!

DEAR BROTHERS AND SISTERS!  Thank you for your love and prayers for all at the mission parish in Venezuela!   Archbishop Nienstedt has asked me to come back this summer and be a pastor in MN.  Thus, Fr. James Peterson will come to be the new associate priest working with Fr. Greg the pastor.

The season of Easter has been a very blessed one of many visits and blessings of homes and the sick.

image3The youth have been very active. Our youth group has blossomed with local pilgrimages to the Capuchin ruins to study the life of Saint Felix (the patron of the town) and to the hospital Jesus Crucificado founded by the Venezuelan Blessed Candelaria of San Jose!  We have 15 youth committed and eager to go to World Youth Day in Poland 2016.  There is a smaller group of youth meeting on Sundays to receive a more intense formation of prayer and apologetics in my final weeks.  We are working to see how to give a clear and solid 20 second response to the rapid fire attacks against the church that come daily and with vigor from Protestants.

I constantly challenge the many families who come for baptism and then are seemingly gone from church practice after.  Everyone knows the date of their birth…because there are parties everywhere at all times and late into or all night long with plenty of food and libations.  However, very few to none of the folks know or celebrate the date of their baptism!!

Unfortunately, it is still very difficult in the barrios. The violence and chaos continue for the majority of people.  I was amazed at the long line up of cars the other night of people who were sleeping in their vehicle all night to be first in line to attempt to buy a car battery… if there are enough to go around.

May the Lord bless each soul here and all of us to be in solidarity with all our brothers and sisters.  Blessings on you all in Jesus and Mary,

Fr. James Adams

 

Easter in San Felix

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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.