November 19, 2018

Catholic Diocese of Brownsville
Weekly Update

Nov. 19, 2018

Thanksgiving: Diocesan Offices Closed Nov. 22-23
All diocesan offices will be closed Wednesday at 10 a.m. and all day Thursday and Friday, Nov. 22-23, for the Thanksgiving holiday.

National Retirement Fund for Religious (RFR) Collection
The national Retirement Fund for Religious (RFR) collection is just over three weeks away on Dec. 8-9. Please help raise awareness about the appeal and the ongoing needs of senior religious. Some 31,000 senior sisters, brothers, and religious order priests benefit from the Retirement Fund for Religious.

Four ways to support this collection:
• Pastors are urged to announce the RFR collection from the pulpit and to encourage generous support.
• Speakers can be organized for parishes that request them.
• Parishes can display RFR posters and to include a collection announcement in their bulletins.
• The message can be shared on social media. The social media toolkit available at makes it easy.

Visit the RFR Campaign Materials page for a variety of resources to support campaign promotion:

Campaign Materials

Checks from individuals should be made payable to the Retirement Fund for Religious – not to the Diocese or parish – and should be sent to the Diocese of Brownsville accounting office so they can be forwarded to the RFR office as soon as possible for processing and acknowledgement in a timely manner. Funds for the collection are due by March 31, 2019 at the national office. Therefore, please forward all funds collected for the Retirement Fund for Religious to the diocesan accounting office before this date.

Contributions from the Diocese of Brownsville entities have totaled $1,144,065.26 since the collection was launched.

If you need assistance with promoting the collection, please contact RFR Campaign Director Beth Kennedy,

Notice from the Insurance Department:
Health Insurance Open Enrollment for Diocesan Employees
It is that time of the year for our annual Health Insurance Open Enrollment. The Open Enrollment period will be from Dec. 4 to Dec. 18, 2018, to be effective Jan. 1, 2019. This year there will not be any open enrollment meetings, but if you have any questions, call the Insurance Department at (956) 550-1554 or (956) 550-1549.

Sharpen Your Skills and Strengthen Your Ministry
The Diocese of Brownsville is offering one-day sessions of customer service training for employees and associates. This year’s training will include some concepts similar to the Good Leaders, Good Shepherds workshops our priests have been attending. A day of training is scheduled in both the upper and lower Valley on the following dates:

• Nov. 28 in Brownsville: 9 a.m.-4 p.m. at St. Mary’s Parish Hall.
• Nov. 29 in San Juan: 9 a.m.-4 p.m. in the San Anselmo Classroom at the Pastoral Center.

The workshops are free to all diocesan entities.

Save the date
Bishop’s Annual Dinner
The 2018 Bishop’s Annual Dinner is set for 6-p.m.-12 midnight on Friday, Nov. 30 at the St. Joan of Arc Parish Hall in Weslaco. This event benefits the Bishop’s charities throughout the Diocese of Brownsville, and features live music, silent and live auctions, drinks, food and fun. To reserve a table, donate or become a sponsor, please contact Rosie Rodriguez at (956) 784-5062 or; or Jesse Salinas at (956) 784-5095 or

Live Dramatic Performances: ‘Maximilian, Saint of Auschwitz’
Fountain of Mercy Ministries and St. Luke Productions are presenting the one-man drama, “Maximilian, Saint of Auschwitz,” featuring Leonardo DeFilippis as Maximilian Kolbe.
There will be five performances in the Rio Grande Valley, each scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.:

• The first performance on Friday, Nov. 30 is hosted by St. Mary’s Catholic School and will take place at Immaculate Conception Auditorium at 1235 E. Jefferson in Brownsville.
• The Saturday, Dec. 1 presentation will be hosted by St. Anthony’s Catholic School and will take place at the St. Anthony Community Center at 1015 E. Harrison Ave. in Harlingen.
• Sunday, Dec. 2, hosted by St. Joseph Catholic School in the school gym at 119 W. Fay St. in Edinburg.
• Monday, Dec. 3, hosted by Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic School, in the OLS gym at 1100 Gumwood Ave. in McAllen.
• Last performance – Tuesday, Dec. 4, hosted by the Pharr Oratory of St. Philip Neri in the school cafeteria at 1407 W. Moore Road in Pharr.

Tickets are available at each host school and at Fountain of Mercy Ministries located at 448 S. Texas Blvd. in Weslaco. Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for students, and $10 for adults 65 and older. For tickets or more information, call (956) 351-5978.

O.L.P.H. Cowboy Roundup and Altar Society’s Annual Christmas Sale
Our Lady of Perpetual Help Altar Society will hold its annual Christmas Sale 8 a.m.-5 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 6; Friday, Dec. 7; and Sunday, Dec. 9, with a raffle at 4 p.m. on Sunday.
Also, the parish’s annual Cowboy Roundup is set for 4-10 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 8, after being postponed due to inclement weather in early November. Everyone is invited to join in these events! Funds raised will go to Church needs. For more information, call the parish office at (956) 682-4238.

Natural Family Planning Seminar Offered
Learn about the scientifically proven Billings Ovulation Method®, which allows couples to plan their families and manage fertility naturally. The seminar provides instruction on:
• Postponing pregnancy
• Achieving pregnancy – for couples with infertility problems
• Monitoring women’s reproductive health
The seminar will be held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Dec. 8 at St. John the Baptist Parish, 216 W. First St. in San Juan and is free of charge.

To register, call Lydia Mendez at (956) 534-4895. Online registration is also available at

Fiesta Nov. 25 at Christ the King Parish in Brownsville
Christ the King Parish will have its annual Fiesta on Sunday, Nov. 25, beginning with Mass at 11 a.m. The festivities run from 5-11 p.m., including food, live music and entertainment. Everyone is invited to this event, which will be held on the parish grounds at 2255 Southmost Road in Brownsville. For more information, call the parish office at (956) 546-1982.

Peregrinación a la Tierra Santa el Mes de Marzo
Parroquia de la iglesia de Nuestro Padre Celestial, Olmito, ofrece una invitación a toda la diócesis a aquellos que desean ir a una peregrinación a la tierra santa el mes de marzo 11-20, 2019. Contactarse con Claudio (956) 651-0361 o Gabriela (956) 624-1024.

Job Openings – Diocese
• Multi-parish Bookkeeper (full-time) – The Diocese of Brownsville is accepting employment applications for a full-time multi-parish bookkeeper for the Upper Valley.
B. A. in business administration with major in accounting required with a minimum one or more years’ experience in accounting profession preferred; or AA degree in business and/or accounting with a minimum of five years’ experience. Interested qualified candidates should contact Genie Treviño, director of human resources, at
• McAllen Pregnancy Center Executive Director – Full-time position with benefits. The executive director is in charge of running the center, supervising the staff and volunteers. The candidate must be dynamic and professional with at least 3 years of experience in a similar field, with a great sensibility to assisting women in crisis situations, and with ample knowledge and lived experience of Catholic teaching on Life. The responsibilities include elaborating and following through with the annual, plan, calendar and budget, and monthly reports to the board of trustees. Please submit your resume to
Freelance Writer/Reporter – The Communications Office of the Diocese of Brownsville is seeking a writer to report and write feature and news stories for publication in The Valley Catholic newspaper and posting on the diocesan website and social media outlets. Journalism experience preferred. Writers with samples should contact Paul Binz, communications associate, by email at or by phone at (956) 784-5055.
• Intern – Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley – Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley has an opening for a Catholic Campaign For Human Development Internship.

Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) is the domestic anti-poverty social justice program of the United States Catholic Bishops. CCHD grants local anti-poverty efforts that are in close partnership with local Catholic dioceses an opportunity to improve their communities by supporting organizations led by low-income individuals. The CCHD internship position is an opportunity to gain experience working with and on behalf of the poor while learning more about social justice education, Catholic social teaching and poverty relief. Interns will have an opportunity to develop relationships with local community leaders and other CCHD interns across the United States.

We encourage those who have the following relevant areas of interest or study to apply: theology, communication, public service, sociology, social work, education, liberal arts, political science, and religious studies and more.

Please send resumes to Michelle Nuñez at

Job Openings – Catholic Schools
Opening at the Pharr Oratory of St. Philip Neri School System. Please submit resume and college degree transcript with application (https.//
• Middle School Science Teacher – classroom experienced and certified in content area.

Send all the information to Sylvia Diaz,, Fax: (956) 787-1516; phone: (956) 781-3056

Openings at Juan Diego Academy in Mission. Email resumes to Aldo Bertini at
• Part-time Religion Teacher – This position requires a bachelor’s degree in theology.
• Part-time Golf Coach

Calendar of Events
Nov. 22-23 – Diocesan offices closed Wednesday at 10 a.m. and all day Thursday and Friday, Nov. 22-23, for the Thanksgiving holiday
Nov. 25 – Christ the King Parish’s annual Fiesta 5-11 p.m. Sunday. Mass at 11 a.m.

Submit information to be included in the Weekly Update to Brenda Nettles Riojas, Director of Diocesan Relations, by e-mail at or by fax to (956) 784-5082.