PAPAL MESSAGE TO U.S. HISPANIC CATHOLICS FOR ENCUENTRO
| VATICAN CITY, JUL 6, 2000 (VIS) - Made public today was the Holy Father's Message, dated
June 16, to Bishop Joseph Fiorenza of Galveston-Houston, U.S.A., president of the National
Conference of Catholic Bishops, on the occasion of Encuentro 2000, the fourth nationwide
gathering of the Hispanic Catholic community in the United States. The national celebration starts
today in Los Angeles and continues through July 9. There are also local celebrations during those
The Pope recalled that "the theme, 'Many Faces in God's House,' seeks to be a celebration of the
rich cultural, ethnic and linguistic diversity which marks the Catholic Church in the United States.
"It is significant," he wrote, "that Encuentro 2000 is meant to celebrate not only the faith and
religious traditions by which Hispanic Catholics enrich the ecclesial life of your country, but also to
point to the important contribution which all Catholics together are urged to make to the mission of
the Church in the United States."
John Paul II asked those present at Encuentro 2000 "to renew their gratitude for the great gift of
faith, ... to ensure that this priceless treasure is passed on in all its vitality," and "to pursue the great
task of ecclesial renewal," including "a conscious and persevering promotion of vocations to the
priesthood and the consecrated life."