Bienvenidos/Welcome

LA OFICINA DE MINISTERIO HISPANO Es un lugar donde nuestra misma fe, bautismo, comunión y misión en el Señor se hacen visibles. Junto con el Grupo de Líderes Pastorales Hispanos, y otras agencias arquidiocesanas, la oficina brinda apoyo directo a las parroquias con católicos hispanos en toda la arquidiócesis, ejerce su compromiso con la Evangelización, Pastoral de Conjunto, y la integración de la comunidad católica en la vida de la arquidiócesis.

THE OFFICE OF HISPANIC MINISTRY Is a place where our one faith, baptism, communion and mission in the Lord are made visible. Together with the Hispanic Pastoral Leaders Group, and other archdiocesan agencies, the office provides direct support to parishes with Hispanic Catholics across the archdiocese, exercises its commitment to Evangelization, Pastoral de Conjunto (Communion in Mission), and integration of the Catholic community into the life of the archdiocese.


Advent Season

History

In our catholic faith, we now enter into the season of advent. the word advent, from the latin "Adventus", meaning “coming”. Advent is a season of preparation for the coming of Christ, not only the birth of Jesus Christ, but his second coming as well. For the coming of the new king and his kingdom as we celebrated the last week of ordinary time in the church. Advent is a time of reflection and prayer, a time to get to know Jesus better at a more personal level. A time to reflect in our lives and make the changes necessary to be in god’s kingdom as he has promised us. The church with its many different traditions has several traditions for advent. In the usa, we are familiar with the advent wreath. With the four candles symbolizing the four weeks prior to christmas, some wreaths have a white candle in the center, which is lit on christmas day. In our tradition-rich Hispanic catholic culture, the posadas are celebrated. The Spanish word "posada", meaning “inn”. The posadas are celebrations commemorating the pilgrimage, of the virgin Mary and St. Joseph, from Nazareth to Bethlehem due to the census ordered by the emperor at that time (lk. 2:1-5). This beautiful tradition of Mexican origin, is celebrated in several other countries. Las posadas begin on December 16 and culminate on December 24. They are celebrated in different homes every day. Those who participate in the celebration make up two groups of people. One group are the “peregrinos” (pilgrims), this group of people carry a statue of the holy family, or, sometimes it is even a couple dressed as Mary and Joseph. The other group are the “inn keepers”, this group is the host of the home.

Posadas

The tradition consists of “los Peregrinos” who go knocking at each house, and in song, they ask for lodging; “…I ask you for lodging in the name of heaven … .” the “innkeeper” group, also in song, answers “…there is no room in here…”sending the pilgrims away. This goes back and forth for a couple of times until the predetermined “host family or home” welcomes the peregrinos; “…come in holy pilgrims …” and they all enter the host’s home. This can also be celebrated at a parish.

Celebration

Once inside, the celebration commences. People pray the rosary, sing “alabanzas” (songs of worship and praise) and of course, there is lots of food and drink and if appropriate, a piñata. A typical dish is tamales while a common drink is atole or champurrado (a traditional warm drink made with cornstarch, chocolate, water and sugar). It is important to mention the background of the piñata. This tradition started during the colonization and evangelization of Latin America. Tradition has it that its shape – the seven cones, represent the 7 sins and thus when we “break” the piñata, we break our sins and out of that comes the “gifts” that Jesus gives us. The “treats” that spill from the piñata when it is broken, symbolize the gifts of love and mercy of Jesus. Today, piñatas are all different shapes and characters so we can say that tradition is lost.

Today

Some parishes celebrate these traditions, or you can find some communities in our archdiocese that continue to celebrate these traditions in their homes. You can join any of them and enjoy good food and fellowship. why not start a new tradition with your family. As I have said before, it is about cultural appreciation and not cultural appropriation!...

by Dcn. Jorge Perez