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As we move toward the end of our Jubilee year, celebrating 175 years of Assumptionist history, God’s mysterious designs impress themselves upon us. So many of the planned events had to be cancelled, or postponed, or transferred to a remote platform. It may sound hyperbolic to say that our Jubilee was run over by a pandemic, but it’s not far from the truth, even if we tried to make the best of it. Still, the year was not without its graces.
Chief among them is to have pitched our tent in a new foundation, in the most unpropitious of circumstances, at the border of the United States and Mexico, The Church entrusted to us by Bishop Seitz in the diocese of El Paso stands directly adjacent to the bridge connecting El Paso with its sister city of Juarez, Mexico. As such, it’s hard to imagine a better location for the mission of our new religious apostolic community, which is to offer a pastoral response to the human and spiritual needs of migrants at the border. Southwest Texas has been one of the places hardest hit by Covid-19, so Fr. Peter and Fr. Ron have been forced to proceed slowly and cautiously to “set up shop” in our new place. As they await the delayed arrival of Fr. Chano from Mexico, they look forward to the re-opening of the Church and to this ministry of service to the poor. Please keep them in your prayers, and stay tuned for opportunities to help.
Assumption College became Assumption University during this Jubilee year, another sign of hope at this difficult time. We look forward to establishing fruitful connections between El Paso and Worcester in the form of educational and mission opportunities for students and faculty and other future exchanges.
As we bring the Jubilee to a close on Christmas, 2020 – the actual 175th anniversary of the first profession of vows of the founding Assumptionist community – the global health crisis belongs to the list of challenges faced along the way in the building up of God’s kingdom. We give thanks for the charism of Fr. d’Alzon lived out with daring and disinterestedness, by religious and lay alike, in the times that are given us. Adveniat Regnum Tuum
Fr. Dennis Gallagher, Provincial Superior of the North American Province
Augustinians of the assumption