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By Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus Rutilio del Riego

 In my homily at the Diocesan Mass for the 25th Anniversary of Episcopal Ordination of Bishop Gerald R. Barnes I expressed how I have seen him exercise his ministry, trying to be faithful to his calling from God and the motto he chose for his coat of arms, “Amar es Entregarse.”

 As his Auxiliary Bishop for over ten years, I have seen Bishop Barnes from a close perspective.

 I have seen Bishop Barnes exercising his episcopal ministry as providing a service to all the faithful of the Diocese and to all members of society. The basin and the towel on his coat of arms express this quite well.

 Bishop Barnes has always looked beyond whatever was accomplished. Complacency is not one his faults neither in relationship to himself nor in relationship to others. I often remember how, after an event that seemed to me well attended and in my view, successful, he would point out that some people, who were expected to be there, were missing. 

Read more: God has provided us a good and faithful shepherd

By Malie Hudson

CHINO HILLS—Bishop Gerald Barnes celebrated his 25th Episcopal Anniversary with a Diocesan Mass on March 18 at St. Paul the Apostle Church in Chino Hills. 

 The Mass opened with an entrance procession that was almost 15 minutes long. It included members from the Knights of Columbus, Equestrian Order of the Knights and Ladies of the Holy Sepulchre and the Ladies Auxiliary of the Knights of St. Peter Claver. 

Read more: Silver Jubilee Mass brings thousands to St. Paul the Apostle Church

 As the Diocese celebrates his Silver Jubilee, Bishop Gerald Barnes sat down recently to retrace his steps in an interview with the Inland Catholic BYTE.

 The Diocese is celebrating your 25th anniversary in many ways this year. What are your own thoughts on this milestone?

 It’s been a long time—25 years is a long time, and yet it’s gone by so fast.

There’s a lot of old that’s here that I feel a part of and yet there’s a lot of new that I’m still learning. I’m uncovering a lot of new needs, and trying to look at new ways of addressing people and their needs. I often said, when asked a question like this, that by the time I retire I’ll be ready to be a bishop, because I’m constantly learning new things and hearing God’s call in different ways to shepherd the people.

Read more: Interview: Bishop Barnes reflects on his 25 years in the Diocese of San Bernardino

 His priests serenaded him.

 His former Vicar General characterized his arrival to the Diocese of San Bernardino 25 years ago in terms of the Book of Genesis.

 His classmate from the seminary joked about him using his mother’s maiden name to burgeon his Hispanic credentials when they ministered together in the barrios of San Antonio, Texas.

 His predecessor recalled seeing his name, “Father Gerry Barnes,” on a list of potential new bishops in the West.

 It was all part of a humorous and heartening program at a March 17 Gala held at the Doubletree Hotel in Ontario to celebrate Bishop Gerald Barnes’ 25th Episcopal Anniversary. He was joined by over 40 members of his family, 11 brother bishops, scores of priests, deacons and religious sisters, and many current and former diocesan ministers. About 470 people attended the dinner.

Read more: Music and laughter highlight 25th Anniversary Gala

By Peter Bradley

 There are 50 U.S. states, but for Bishop Gerald R. Barnes, the majority of his life has revolved around only two—California and Texas.

 Bishop Barnes was born on June 22, 1945 to George and Aurora Barnes in Phoenix, Arizona.

 He was the second of seven children. After World War II, George and Aurora came to southern California, settling in the Boyle Heights community of East Los Angeles.

Read more: From California to Texas and back: Bishop Barnes spent his formative years in East Los Angeles...

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