By Malie Hudson

teddrennan   On May 18, Bishop Gerald Barnes will ordain three seminarians to the priesthood. It will be the culmination of nearly a decade of formation for three men—Ted Drennan, Juan Carlos Lopez and Gino Galley—who came from various backgrounds to pursue a vocation to the priesthood. 

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By Malie Hudson

 On April 27, Bishop Gerald Barnes will honor four extraordinary recipients with this year’s Amar Es Entregarse Award. The award is given to an individual or group who embody his Episcopal Motto Amar Es Entregarse, “Love is the total giving of one’s self.” 

 The March issue of the BYTE highlighted recipients Martin and Mary Swanson, and the Valley Missionary Program. In this issue, we introduce the remaining two awardees who will also be honored for their complete dedication to the local Church. 

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By Marge Bitetti

CORONA—For Henna Jalal, caring for the homeless is part of her faith as a Muslim. 

 “I can’t go to sleep at night if my neighbor is hungry,” she says. “Being a good neighbor and realizing the duty to our neighbors doesn’t just mean being friendly to the homeowners next door. It means to help take care of the community as a whole, and that includes the poor.” 

 This is also a core calling of the Secular Franciscans as they perform Corporal Works of Mercy, which includes Feeding the Hungry. 

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SAN BERNARDINO—The Diocesan Office of Restorative Justice will hold its first ever Victims Symposium at the Diocesan Pastoral Center on April 10.

 The event will showcase the many ways the Office has expanded its ministry to victims of violent crime, including murder, and their families and loved ones. It takes place during National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, which sparked the idea to hold such an event, said Office Director Marciano Avila. “We’re usually out attending vigils that week. This year, we thought, ‘let’s have something here.’ ”

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Each month the BYTE will publish sections of the U.S. Bishops Pastoral Letter “Encountering Christ in Harmony: A Pastoral Response to Our Asian and Pacific Island Brothers and Sisters.”

 In his Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, Pope Francis urges the faithful to “a renewed personal encounter with Jesus Christ, or at least an openness to letting him encounter them.”3 Jesus Christ is constantly reaching out to all persons, but there needs to be a response from us. We need not fear that the invitation is meant for someone else and not us. We can respond with a sure hope. “The Lord does not disappoint those who take this risk; whenever we take a step toward Jesus, we come to realize that he is already there, waiting for us with open arms. Now is the time to say to Jesus: ‘Lord, I have let myself be deceived. . . . I need you. . . .’ God never tires of forgiving us. . . . [and no] one can strip us of the dignity bestowed upon us by this boundless and unfailing love.” 

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By Sister Chilee Okoko, D.M.M.M.

SAN BERNARDINO—The role of the Church in ministering to those affected by mental health struggles will again take center stage at the 2019 Behavioral Health Conference on May 8.

 Since 2015, the Diocesan Department of Life, Dignity and Justice has been promoting awareness, education and advocacy in the area of Behavioral and Mental Health. This has been part of a larger effort by the Diocese to promote wellness and health among communities of faith. This effort has led to collaborative relationships with the San Bernardino County Department of Behavioral Health, Riverside County Department of Behavioral Health, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) and some healthcare entities like Riverside University Health Systems and Loma Linda University Health System. 

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SAN BERNARDINO—Welcoming the launch of its second five-year ministry program plan, the Emergency Operations Collaborative (EOC) of the Diocese has announced that 3,500 teachers, catechists, ushers, parishioners and staff throughout the Diocese have completed the required mandated diocesan training in disaster preparedness and response.

 The EOC ministry program was initially created by Bishop Gerald Barnes as a response to the many natural disasters which impact the Diocese – fires, earthquakes, floods – and how the local Church can best provide pastoral care in those moments. With the hire of its first director in late 2011, the ministry program was revised to include training for man-made disasters such as dangerous persons and active shooters. 

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