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Subcommittee on the Church in Latin America Approves $2.46 Million in Grants

 
November 12, 2013
WASHINGTON—The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Subcommittee on the Church in Latin America approved 164 grants to 20 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, for a total of $2,273,105. The subcommittee approved the grants on November 9th, just prior to the USCCB’s General Assembly meeting in Baltimore. The pastoral grants are financed by the annual Collection for the Church in Latin America, taken up in churches across the U.S., to assist in religious education, family life and pro-life initiatives, parish-based evangelization and other pastoral projects.

“We are blessed every year to receive generous contributions from the people of the U.S.,” said Bishop Eusebio Elizondo, M.Sp.S., auxiliary bishop of Seattle and chairman of the subcommittee. “We are privileged each year to see how these projects build up the Church in Latin America and spread the faith. The gratitude of our grant recipients and their program beneficiaries is overwhelming.”

The Subcommittee received $4.89 million in requests from countries such as Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Ecuador, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, and Venezuela for their November meeting. With this batch of approved grants, the Subcommittee approved a total of 393 grants amounting to $5,540,716 in pastoral grants in 2013.

In the Archdiocese of Cali, Colombia, a grant of $23,000 to the Benedict XVI Archdiocesan Institute for the Family will provide classes for parents and couples on prayer and spirituality, Church teachings on marriage and leadership formation. A $10,000 grant to the Diocese of San Isidro’s Equipo Diocesano sobre Drogodependencia in Argentina will train parish teams on how to address the issues of drug abuse and addiction in the diocese, and develop prevention efforts. In Bolivia, an $8,000 grant for the formation of missiology students will support eight students, including clergy, religious, and laity, in mission formation. The participants will assist in pastoral work in their respective dioceses.

In Haiti, the construction of churches and church buildings continues after the devastation of the 2010 earthquake. “Progress has been slow and difficult, due to many challenges of the system in Haiti and the need to ensure high-safety standards for the new buildings,” said Archbishop Thomas Wenski of Miami, chairman of the subcommittee’s Haiti Advisory Group. “But we have had encouragement with many projects now entering the completion phase.”

In addition to the money approved for the pastoral projects, the subcommittee also approved $188,508 from the Special Collection for the Church in Haiti for two reconstruction projects. Of the two approved reconstruction projects in Haiti, the first is a grant of $76,500 for reconstruction of the novitiate of the Compagnes de Jesus sisters, in Leogane. The USCCB is also currently funding the reconstruction of the sisters’ school on the same site. The second project is a grant of $112,008 for the design phase of a new parish and rectory for the Parish of Immaculate Conception located in Cite Soleil, one of the poorest neighborhoods in Port-au-Prince. The church building was completely destroyed by the earthquake.
 
The national date for the Collection for the Church in Latin America is the fourth Sunday in January. However, some dioceses take up the Collection at other times during the year.

More information on the work of the Subcommittee is available online at: http://www.usccb.org/catholic-giving/opportunities-for-giving/latin-america/index.cfm.

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Keywords: Latin America, evangelization, ministry training, clergy, deacons, lay formation, Collection for the Church in Latin America, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Bishop Eusebio Elizondo, M.Sp.S., diocese, grants, Subcommittee on the Church in Latin America, Haiti, PROCHE, Archbishop Thomas Wenski, national collections

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