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RETURNING RENEWED Three women from our Diocese, Veronica Quiroz (left); Sister Rosario Coronado, EEP, (right); and Irma Corzo (not pictured) traveled to Texas this summer to attend a new Catholic Extension course for Latina women. They return inspired to bring the lessons they learned to their ministries in the Diocese.

Three women from the Diocese of San Bernardino returned renewed and inspired after attending a new Catholic Extension course for Latina women entitled “Courageous Women.” The trio were Veronica Quiroz from St. Elizabeth of Hungary, Desert Hot Springs; Irma Corzo from Our Lady of the Desert, Apple Valley; and Sister Rosario Coronado, EEP, who belongs to the Congregation Evangelizadoras Eucarísticas de los Pobres.

The course took place June 16-19 at the University of Dallas, Texas, and was presented by the staff of the Evangelization Ministry of the University of Dallas. It covered various topics related to the larger theme of what it means to be Latina women leaders in the ministries of today’s Church.

One area that they focused on was the example and experience of courageous women in the Bible. “I liked the perspective ... of Ruth and Miriam. For example, that [Ruth] was a Moabite and immigrated to another place. That is a connection to those of us who have immigrated to this country and lived through those difficult experiences of language, adaptation, possibly religion and culture,” said Corzo.

Another theme in the course was “The Woman and the King,” which was about knowing oneself to be a daughter of God. “Nothing empowers a woman more than the dignity of knowing that she is a daughter of God,” said Quiroz. Additional topics that the seminar covered were “Healing our inner child” and “Edifying each other.”

The women want to take what they learned from the course and apply it to their various ministries in the Diocese. Corzo wants to bring what she learned to women in prisons, especially the stories of the strong women in the Bible. “Despite all the situations they lived through ... their faith became stronger,” she said of those biblical women. Corzo believes that incarcerated women could use that strength as they face many challenges such as being away from their loved ones and suffering mistreatment and dehumanization.

Corzo said she would like to be able to offer this course in the Diocese of San Bernardino, especially in the High Desert. “It gives us a lot of hope, a lot of confidence and a lot of joy to know that we are not the only women in this situation who have faced difficult things in life, and that there are other women who have lived through it and are leaving us a great message of faith, hope and love,” she said.