June 16, 2021
Bishop Mark Seitz opened up his home on May 27 for a fun evening of fellowship. The "Fiesta at Bishop's" was held as a thank you for continued support during the difficult months of the COVID-19 pandemic.The event was sponsored by the Catholic Foundation's Progress Catholic Ministry Appeal program.
The Catholic Ministry Appeal funds the ministries of the Diocese of El Paso, including counseling those in need of emotional support, educating the youth, administering services to the vulnerable amongst us, and supporting the formaiton of future priests and faith leaders.
“It was a great opportunity to spend time with one another and remember that we are all one faith community,” said Linda Caro, Chief Operating Officer. “It has been a difficult year and a half, and we wanted to celebrate the resiliency of our Diocese. We want to be sure that we get to know those who serve our Church and share with them the message that they are valued and appreciated. It’s not often that we are able to get together just to say thank you.”
The fiesta-themed event in Bishop Mark's backyard featured a taco truck, refreshing beverages, music, festive decorations, lively conversation, and delicious churros with dipping sauces for dessert. Bishop Mark welcomed 65 guests, including donors to the campaign, diocesan ministry leaders, Catholic Foundation of the Diocese of El Paso board members, Progress committee members, and beneficiaries of the various ministries.
One thing that made the event so special was that this was the first time many had gathered in person outside of their parishes and families since the beginning of the pandemic, said Caro. To ensure everyone’s safety, masks and hand sanitizers were provided.
“It was a beautiful evening and we were fortunate that we were able to provide safety measures that allowed us to enjoy each other’s company and still feel safe” Caro said.
Bishop Seitz opened the evening with a prayer and a message of gratitude for everyone’s commitment to the Catholic Ministry Appeal, and the entire community.
“We are grateful to spend this night surrounded by friends,” he said during his remarks. “Seeing all of you reminds me of how vibrant and engaged our Catholic community is, and how together we can make an incredible impact.”
Among the guests in attendance for the event were 13 seminarians, currently in formation, and Father John Telles, the Rector of St. Charles Seminary and Director of Seminarians.
For many, interacting and getting to know the future priests of our diocese was among the highlights of the event.
“It was incredibly special to get to spend time with them,” said Roberto Garibay, Progress Leader for the San Antonio de Padua Catholic Church, and a member of the Progress Catholic Ministry Appeal committee. “During these times, it’s inspiring to see people who say ‘yes’ to God’s calling. That’s what I told them – thank you for saying yes.”
For Caro and the rest of the Foundation team, that is exactly what they were hoping for with the event.
“We ask people to donate to the Catholic Ministry Appeal and explain that it goes to the ministries, but this is a way for people to see the impact first-hand,” she said. “There is not a Catholic who isn’t affected by the work of the ministries of the diocese. By helping people understand who they are supporting, they understand that they are our partners. We can’t do it without them, and we are grateful.”
Click here for more information or to make a donation, or contact Catholic Ministry Appeal Director Natalie Eckberg at (915) 872-8412.