U.S. Bishops’ Subcommittee Awards Grants for 187 Projects in Latin America, Including Help for Migrants and Victims of Natural Disasters

December 4, 2017 By Public Affairs Office

WASHINGTON—With the goal ofstrengthening and supporting the pastoral work of the Church in Latin Americaand the Caribbean, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' (USCCB)Subcommittee on the Church in Latin America awarded nearly $3.2 million in grantsfor 183 pastoral projects in the region for 2018. These most recent grants weremade at the Subcommittee's meeting in November and bring the total awarded for pastoralgrants 2018 to almost $7.2 million. Four other projects were awarded inresponse to natural disasters.

"Each year the generosity ofCatholics in the United States is transformed into programs that nourish thefaith of our brothers and sisters in Latin America and the Caribbean," saidBishop Eusebio Elizondo, auxiliary bishop of Seattle and chairman of theSubcommittee on the Church in Latin America. "This generosity sustains the faithfor many marginalized and vulnerable people, like migrants and victims ofnatural disasters."

Instability in some areas ofLatin America has resulted in an increased number of migrants within the regionfrom countries like Venezuela, Colombia, and Haiti.Projects in support of the pastoral care of migrants that received funding fromthe Subcommittee include support to the Hermanas Misioneras de San CarlosBorromeo in Ecuador and the Archdiocese of Santiago in Chile. The religiouscongregation received a grant to support and integrate migrant families intoEcuadorian society. Migrant families will receive spiritual support throughconferences, retreats, and catechetical formation. This project is anticipatedto reach over 1,500 beneficiaries. The Archdiocese of Santiago's Department ofMigration received funds to provide formation to 250 pastoral ministers, many expectedto be migrants themselves, to learn about their rights and how to defend themand work on evangelization of other immigrants. The project will also createbooklets as supporting material for the ministers as they work in parishes.

Additionally, three grants wereawarded to projects in Haiti to support rebuilding efforts of the Church in thewake of Hurricane Matthew. Hurricane Matthew swept through Haiti in 2016, and thecountry continues to recover from the devastating 2010 earthquake. A grant tothe Diocese of Jérémie will be used for repairs andreconstruction of three church buildings and a grant to the Diocese of Anse-à-Veau et Miragoâne will be used forthe reconstruction of two church buildings. These funds were awarded from theHurricane Matthew emergency collection that was taken in most dioceses lastyear. In addition to grants to help with the reconstruction efforts afterHurricane Matthew, the Subcommittee also funded a project to rebuild a churchdestroyed during the 2010 earthquake. The funds for this rebuilding came fromthe Special Collection for Haiti which took place in the aftermath of theearthquake.

Other areas of funding for the Subcommittee'spastoral grants include seminarian and consecrated religious formation, prisonministry, youth ministry, and lay leadership training. The issues covered bythese ministries are pro-life, environmental justice,ministry to indigenous and African-Americans as well as urban ministries, amongothers. "As it proclaims the Gospel of joy, the Church is called to developministries to all those in need, whether materially or spiritually, and thusthe Subcommittee supports all the ministries available to the faithful," saidBishop Elizondo.

Grants are funded by the annualCollection for the Church in Latin America, taken in many dioceses across theU.S. on the fourth Sunday in January. The Subcommittee on the Church in LatinAmerica oversees the collection and an annual grant program as part of theUSCCB Committee on National Collections. It allocates revenue received from theCollection for the Church in Latin America as grants across Latin America andthe Caribbean. More information about the Collection for the Church in LatinAmerica, the many projects it funds, and resources to promote it, can be foundat www.usccb.org/latin-america.

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Keywords: U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, Subcommittee on the Church in Latin America, Bishop EusebioElizondo, Committee on National Collections, grants, migrants, Latin America,evangelization, Collection for the Church in Latin America, Haitireconstruction, Venezuela, Colombia, Caribbean, Florida, Archdiocese of Santiago,Diocese of Anse-à-Veau et Miragoâne, Diocese of Jérémie, natural disasters, HurricaneMatthew, earthquake, pro-life, environmental justice

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