Blessed Michael McGivney/Beato Michael McGivney

 My brothers and sisters, As I said beforehand- I will continue to use this blog on a regular basis (this week being the exception). I am going to publish here a presentation I gave in PROBIGUA about a Saint or a Blessed. This project was used in order to catechize the maestras of the program, as well as to see how far I have come in the program. It si in both English and Spanish, and the video will be published to the photos drive. Please take a look and see.  The Saint/Blessed I chose was Blessed Michael McGivney- whose feast we celebrate today! BLESSED MICHAEL MCGIVNEY/ BEATO MIGUEL MCGIVNEY   -         “Unity and Charity is our motto. Unity, in order to gain strength to be charitable to each other in benevolence…” o     (Card 1) “Unidad y Caridad es nuestro lema. Unidad, para ganar fuerza para ser caritativo unos con otros en benevolencia…”   -         This quote of Bl. Fr. Michael McGivney is one of the very few he has written and has been recorded as being a part of the declarati

One in Faith/Uno en la Fe

 My friends, I began this blog in order to share with you an experience that some of you may never have a chance to. I have to say, that my time here in Guatemala has born nothing but good fruits- both academically, spiritually, humanly, and pastorally. As St. John wrote at the end of his Gospel, “There are also many other things Jesus did, but if these were to be described individually, I do not think the whole world would contain the books that would be written.” This in a way is true for all of us who experience something, and only share a small amount- that is in a way what this blog has done- given you a taste, just a taste, of what another culture is like.  However, let me remind ourselves as to why the blog is titled ‘One in Faith/Un en la Fe’- “I titled this blog ‘One in Faith’ in order to express that no matter the race, ethnicity, culture, diversity, color of skin, or wherever one may be in the world- we are the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church. We are united in our

A Saintly and Blessed Place- Part III (Fiesta De Santiago)

 My brothers and sisters, Well, throughout my time here, I have experienced a number of opportunities- cultural, spiritual, historical, etc… and I do have to say, this experiences is far from over, and I have just hit the tip of the iceberg in introducing you all to a nation, to a people, and to a community that we are so far removed form, but we really are not. Yesterday, July 25, the people of Guatemala celebrated the Feast of Saint James- Fiesta De Santiago. For those who do not know who Saint James is, here is a very brief overview of who this man is. St. James was one of the original 12 Apostles who followed Christ. He was the brother of St. John, the beloved Apostle, and is known as James the Greater (there is a James the Lesser who becomes the first Bishop of Jerusalem.) St. James was one of the three that was present for the Transfiguraron of our Lord, Jesus’s Agony in the Garden (all the Apostles were there, but only three of them went on further with Jesus), and was present f

A Saintly and Blessed Place- Part II

 My friends, due to some construction outside of the house, the wifi has not been the greatest, which prevented my previous post ‘Part I’ to not be published when I desired it. As my former professor at seminary would say, ‘Technology is the ontology of modernity’! Anyway, I would like to share with you ‘Part II’ of this short post series with an introduction to Blessed Stanley Rother! As mentioned previously, Santo Hermano Pedro Bentancour was a Saint of the poor and sick in Antigua, and an example of what it means to live out our Baptismal Priesthood- not just through fundraising or a share in our own surplus of our material wealth- but through the sharing in of Christ’s own poverty at Bethlehem when He humbled himself to take on our own weak and ‘poor’ human nature. Santo Hermano Pedro showed us that our own wealth comes from our own poverty as human beings, and by giving of ourselves, we share the greatest gift of wealth that we have- nothing material or words of ‘inspiration’- but

A Saintly and a Blessed Place- Part I

My friends, over this past weekend, I have had the pleasure to learn a little bit about the ‘sanctity’ of Guatemala. What I mean by this, is that the Guatemalan people, especially in Antigua and Atitlan, have a great devotion to Santo Hermano Pedro Bentancour and Bl. Stanley Rother. Both of these individuals, have had some impact on the life of the Faith in Guatemala. Due to the fact that they have had this impact I am going to write two parts- each identifying both of these individuals and their impact in Guatemala. First, Santo Hermano de Pedro- Br. Pedro was born in 1626 and died in 1667. He wa sa man who lives in through the eyes of the Mysteries of Bethlehem and the Cross. As he was about to disembark for the ‘new world’ he became ill. Through his illness he came in direct contact with the poor, the outcast, and those who were ill and suffering. Once he recovered he consecrated his life to God. Although he was not able to complete his ecclesiastical studies to become a Priest, he

Antigua- the Ancient City

Antigua- translated from Spanish to being called ‘The Ancient City’, and quite literally it is an ancient city. Much of the architecture, the culture, and the people portray the influences of the Mayan heritage. Antigua has been designed in order to protect the ancient cultures and traditions of Ancient Guatemala- from the time of the Mayan civilization to the time of the Spanish conquistadors and explores and the Spanish influence on the culture. One of the many structures int he city itself that portrays both the Mayans nd the Spanish cultures are the Churches. Though they are not designed to be like Mayan temples, nor anything European like, they are structured in a way that represents both heritages. The designs around the inside and outside of the Church is very much Mayan influenced, while the size and the interior layout is more Spanish-European.  The people- some continue to dress in the traditional Mayan colors- which signify the family they have descended from. Various colors

The Ancient and the Contemporary

As mentioned in my previous post, the Mayan culture and ceremonial actions were heavily influential in Guatemala’s cultural and religious practices. The Mayans established their culture and society around their religious practices and ceremonial sacrifices. Nothing the Mayans did was without a ceremonial purpose.  One of the beautiful things is that the Mayan culture, although no longer continues as it was in the past, still is active in a more contemporary way. Those who descended from the true Mayan culture continue to return to Tikal in order to offer sacrifice. In the past, their sacrifices were not just that of animals, but also human sacrifices as well in order to please the gods of the cosmos. Today, the Mayan people return for their ‘Holy Week’ to Tikal at the beginning of March. They spend one day sacrificing small animals (chickens, hamsters, birds, etc…) and spend about 5 days in prayer and contemplation. They have ceased doing human sacrifices today, but you can see all of