“Every time I remember you, I thank my God…” these words from St. Paul to the Philippians come to my mind very often, because the Hispanic Community of the small town of California Missouri, makes them resonate in my heart.
It is a privilege to live with migrants. During this time, in ministry with them, their faith helps me, their trust in God, their simplicity of life, their suffering for the remoteness of the family and homeland, but at the same time, a new community of mutual support it is built.
In the different occasions that arise, they could either be problems, sufferings, joys and other family situations, the unconditional support they give each other, makes the Word becoming flesh true, in their midst, with them and with each other.
The opportunities for services we can provide are countless, from a simple medical consultation, to a C-section or other surgery. From preparation for the Sacraments, to the accompaniment in court for any irregular situation that they might face.
I learned from Enrique Castro, who works for the Hispanic ministry at the Diocese, what he once shared with us, saying: “this is my family, my blood family is far away, but I spend more time with you very frequently.” My congregational family is, and will always be, the one I chose for life, and although physically far from their support, I live it in their presence by various means. The Sunday Eucharist, the Holy Hour on Thursdays gives me the opportunity to pray with them, to learn from them, to get to know them a little more each time and to continue this pilgrimage as a true Church, People of God.
By Sr. Lupita Ruiz.