Children and parents blessed one another on Jan. 9 at the first in-person liturgical celebration shared by English- and Spanish-speaking Catholics since the pandemic began.

“It was a small event on Sunday, the feast of the Baptism of the Lord – our first Hispanic liturgical gathering since January 2020, and it was a success.
Participation was vocal and strong. Songs were sung with gusto, and we feel positive that more persons will come and take leadership roles as we proceed.” These were the comments of Sr. Cecilia Fandel, chair of the Hispanic Outreach for Rusk County.

At the conclusion of the Scripture and Communion service led by Sr. Marianna Ableidinger, a ritual of blessing water and using it to recall our baptism with the Sign of the Cross was held.
The custom of parent-blessing-child and child-blessing-parents was exciting to watch, Sr. Cecilia added. “The women commented on that afterwards.”

After the service, all gathered downstairs for refreshments and a simple meal. “It was a good opportunity for everyone to get acquainted,” she said.

Two weeks prior to the celebration, English- and Spanish-speaking women planned the event after reflecting on the Scripture of the feast. Everyone had a role to play and got the word out to the 12 farms scattered throughout the county. These events are held at St. Mary’s Church in Bruce, which is fairly central to the farms.

“Women from St. Mary’s PCCW have played a critical role in these events since 2014. We would not be able to do this necessary ministry without them,” commented Sr. Cecilia.