Updated: Feb 22
Father Derrek Scott and I just completed some on-site work in the Grand Junction deanery. You may recall that we began a series of parish and ministry visitations last November in the Durango deanery. Traveling out of COVID, we are going out to hear what’s going on in the parishes and ministries, gathering feedback for Pope Francis’ Synod on Synodality and preparing for the national Eucharistic Renewal.
Last week, we visited Immaculate Heart of Mary, St. Joseph, Holy Family School and St. Mary Hospital. We met with the Hispanic Ministry leadership, the Catholic students from Mesa University and all the priests of the deanery. The listening sessions were well attended and the feedback productive. I want to thank all representatives, staff and clergy involved. Coming out of COVID, the mission is moving forward. It is a joy to be in communion with disciples laboring for the harvest on the western slope!
"Father Derrek Scott and I just completed some on-site work in the Grand Junction deanery."
Looking ahead, Father Derrek and I will visit parishes and ministries all over the diocese through the next year. One purpose is administrative, to hear about finances, communications, procedures, local concerns and next steps. To see how this diocese connects and can improve.
However, note that the overall purpose of each encounter is what ties us together. This is the mission of Jesus! It is in this one thing, only, in which we find our definition and our hope. Our encounters with each other are encounters with Jesus. As I look forward to the visits ahead, I want to share one thought about making this happen in the parishes.
"This is the mission of Jesus! "
Young families are among us, some newly arriving, some returning, some having stayed the course. Rejoice with them. Let go of lingering division and cultural differences, then look to them and rejoice. They come to us in hope. They need our faith. They need us. Look to the ministry of the youth and young families. Unite the parish around them. Rejoice in those who step forward to do this ministry. Where the future of the mission of Jesus is held firmly in the heart of the parish, the parish is growing.
The Diocese of the Little Way is a wonderful work of God. It is in progress and on its way. To those parishes we missed on this last round, we will return to hear you and celebrate with you. And to all those yet to come, brothers and sisters, we look forward to sharing the encounter with Jesus with each and every one of you. May Jesus bless us all!
Sincerely yours in Christ,
+Most Reverend Stephen J. Berg
Bishop of Pueblo