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Our Lady of Lourdes


News from Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish, Santa Ana, California PDF Print E-mail
Written by augustinian recollects   
Monday, 23 February 2015 21:28

Feast of Our Patroness, Our Lady of Guadalupe

As is the practice in this parish, to prepare for the Feast of Our Patroness, we held a novena in honor of Our Lady of Guadalupe during the Evening Masses.

On December 11, after the 7:00 pm Mass, Fr. Marlon Beof, OAR, led everyone to the parking area for the coronation of the statue of Our Lady of Guadalupe after which he pronounced the Parish Fiesta officially open. For the next twenty-four hours, thousands of parishioners and guests from all walks of life came for the flower offerings and mañanitas serenading Our Lady, participation at Eucharistic celebrations and to enjoy the different booths offering food and religious articles.

At the parking area, Fr. Marlon, Deacon Miguel and Altar servers after the crowning of the Statue of Our Lady of Guadalupe on the Eve of her Feast.

On the Day of the Feast of Our Lady at 4:30 am, Bishop Kevin Vann presided over a concelebrated Mass with Fathers Marlon, Alfredo de Dios, OAR, and Jose Antonio Arias, OAR. Deacons Domingo Garza and Miguel Gonzalez assisted at the Mass.

Bishop Kevin Vann accompanied by Frs. Marlon, Alfredo, and Jose Antonio and Deacons Domingo Garza and Miguel Gonzalez after the Mass on the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe.


After Mass, Bishop Kevin Vann blessed our new community chapel located in the Rectory.


The highlight of the Advent Season was the nine day Christmas Posada before each 7:00 pm Mass. Posadas are an important part of Mexican Christmas celebrations. The word posada means "inn" or "shelter" in Spanish, and this tradition re-enacts Mary and Joseph's search for a place to stay in Bethlehem. Posadas are held on each of the nine nights leading up to Christmas from December 16 to 24th.

To the delight of children and their parents this year, we also had Posadas with the CCD students during their respective days of CCD classes.

On December 24, Fr. Marlon presided at the 5:00 pm children’s Christmas Eve Mass; this was the second time we held it in our parish. The children's choir helped to enrich the celebration.

At 11:00 pm, Fr. Jose Antonio Arias presided over the Noche Buena Mass with Frs. Marlon and Alfredo concelebrating.

On December 31 at 9:00 pm, Fr. Alfredo de Dios presided over the Noche Vieja Mass with Frs. Marlon and Jose Antonio concelebrating. The Mass was followed by a Holy Hour led by Fr. Marlon to thank the Lord for the blessings for the end of 2014 and asking God’s blessing for everyone and every family in the parish for the New Year.

--Father Marlon Beof, OAR


Last Updated on Monday, 23 February 2015 21:40
News from Cristo Rey Parish, Los Angeles, California PDF Print E-mail
Written by augustinian recollects   
Tuesday, 10 February 2015 22:14


THE 75TH ANNIVERSARY of the foundation of Cristo Rey Church was a highlight of this year’s activities. The Augustinian Recollects have enjoyed a long and wonderful history here and it was through the vision of our community that permission was given for Fr. Jesus Domench, O.A.R. to begin ministering to the Hispanic Catholics in the Atwater Village section of Los Angeles. The small community joined with the Glendale Fiesta Association to raise funds to purchase land for a church. The first meeting in 1939 was held on the Feast of Christ the King and the enthusiastic members of the local community hoped that if their fund-raising activities would be fruitful that they would eventually be able to construct a church and desired that it be called "Cristo Rey," a title which is so dear to the Hispanic community.

Masses were celebrated outdoors and in various locations for several years before construction began on the church. It was a joyous occasion when Archbishop John J. Cantwell dedicated the new church on March 12, 1944. The beautiful statue of Christ the King in the sanctuary is a replica of the image in the Recollect church of the Sacred Heart in Manizales, Colombia. The numerous and beautiful statues that adorn the church are an inspiration to the people and a fascination for visitors. A recent issue of the Atwater Village Residents Association described the mission style architecture of the church and the unique interior as well worth a visit.

Several of the Augustinian Recollects with Archbishop José Gomez and Bishop Gerard Wilkerson prior to the anniversary Mass.

Archbishop Jose Gomez was the principal celebrant of the 75th anniversary Mass on Sunday, November 23, the Feast of Christ the King. He was joined by Auxiliary Bishop Gerald Wilkerson and members of our Province who were able to attend.

During the initial planning, Fr. Michael Stechmann, O.A.R. pastor, had invited the Archbishop to participate in the street procession following the Mass. The presence of so many parishioners, led by the young members of a “banda” created an enthusiasm throughout the neighborhood that is still very much a part of conversations. Archbishop Gomez enjoyed the enthusiasm of the day and remained afterwards for over an hour being photographed with parishioners. The festivities continued with a festival and food booths sponsored by various groups and parish families.

The anniversary celebration was included in the religious and secular press and photographs posted on the Facebook page of Archbishop Gomez were viewed by more than 41,000 persons. Certificates were received from the California State Legislature and the City of Los Angeles and are displayed in the church entrance.

The distribution of a brief parish history and commemorative holy cards was welcomed by the parishioners. A good number of former residents of Atwater Village returned for the celebration and it was a delight to welcome back those who called Cristo Rey their “home” during these 75 years.

The Presentation of the Gifts during the liturgy. (Overflow crowds viewed the Mass in the parish hall via a video feed.)


FR. JUAN JOSE GUZMAN and members of the Movimiento Familiar Cristiano took advantage of the feast of All Saints and All Souls to prepare altars for a “Dia de los Muertos” celebration in the parish hall. Parishioners brought photographs to place on the designated altars and following each Mass there was a procession to the parish hall and prayers for our beloved deceased. The parishioners were delighted to share in this tradition and are looking forward to it next year.

A MARATHON OF NOVENAS began in November in preparation for the Feast of Christ the King and this was followed by the novenas in honor of Our Lady of Guadalupe and Las Posadas. All of the novenas were extremely well attended and met with an enthusiastic response.

LAS GUADALUPANAS continue to be a very active group in the parish with their regular meetings, Sunday breakfasts and cleaning of the church. Prior to the anniversary celebration, they purchased a new rug for the sanctuary area and made a generous gift to the Annual Appeal of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the parish. In addition, they provided the mariachi for the Mañanitas on the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, as well as entertainment and plentiful refreshments in the parish hall after the Mass.


Last Updated on Tuesday, 10 February 2015 22:52
News from Our Lady of the Pillar Parish, Santa Ana, California PDF Print E-mail
Written by augustinian recollects   
Sunday, 08 February 2015 21:21

Over the weekend of December 6-7, Fr. Eliseo Gonzalez, OAR, and fifty-eight parishioners from Our Lady of Pillar Church, Santa Ana, California, traveled to Sacramento to visit the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe and to pray before the tomb of the Servant of God, Alfonso Gallegos, OAR. On Saturday December 6, after visiting the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe upon arriving in Sacramento, the pilgrims visited the California State Capital Building, Bishop Gallegos Square and later attended the Holy Eucharist at Blessed Sacrament Cathedral, where Bishop Jaime Soto presided. On Sunday, the pilgrims attended the Holy Eucharist at Our Lady of Guadalupe Shrine and saw the exposition of the replica of the Holy Shroud of Turin and Old Town Sacramento and then returned to Santa Ana later that evening. It was a pilgrimage of faith and joy and helped to continue promoting the life and works of our brother, the Servant of God, Alfonso Gallegos.


--Father Eliseo Gonzalez, OAR


Last Updated on Sunday, 08 February 2015 21:24
News from Tagaste Monastery, Suffern, New York PDF Print E-mail
Written by augustinian recollects   
Wednesday, 04 February 2015 14:38

Ceremony and Blessing

Fr. John Oldfield, OAR, represented Tagaste Monastery at a special service of blessing at Good Samaritan Hospital on September 22. Cardinal Timothy Dolan presided at the ceremony, which brought together hospital officials and local clergy as well as the Sisters of Charity and representatives of Bon Secours Charity Health System who partner the services at Good Samaritan. The Tagaste community has had close connections with the Sisters of Charity and the hospital since the 1950s when the Recollects first came to Suffern.

SAR Excursion

The Tagaste SARs made an excursion to the National Shrine of Our Lady of Czestochowa in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, on October 11. The shrine, which is run by the Pauline Order, consists of a beautiful complex of buildings and landscaped grounds, and boasts the largest stained glass windows in the country with images of Polish and Polish-American history. The group attended Mass and enjoyed a tour of the grounds.

Guild Activities

The Pius X Guild sponsored a number of fund-raising activities during the fall months to support the Monastery, all of them being held in the new Guild Hall. The annual Holiday Boutique was held on Oct. 25, bringing together a number of dealers selling arts and crafts, and the annual raffle took place with a first prize of $500. A second Garage Sale (the first being June 28) was held on November 8, once again featuring dealers and refreshments. Finally, the annual Guild Communion Breakfast was held on December 7. Following a bilingual Mass at which Fr. Michael Rafferty, OAR, presided, some 140 guild members and guests enjoyed an abundant breakfast buffet. As is customary, the Guild presented each community member with a Christmas gift.

Institution of Acolytes

Bishop Thomas Donato, Auxiliary Bishop of Newark, New Jersey, conferred the ministry of acolyte on Fras. George Valdivia and José Arredondo along with twelve of their classmates on October 26 in the chapel at Immaculate Conception Seminary. Frs. Michael Rafferty, OAR, John Gruben, OAR, and Felix Daganta, OAR, concelebrated at the Mass. The ceremony was followed by refreshments in the seminary refectory; a dinner in honor of our new acolytes was later held at the Monastery.

Death of Br. Joseph Joly

The community was greatly saddened by the death of Brother Joseph Joly, OAR, on November 15 after a long period of declining health. Bishop David Arias, OAR, presided at the funeral Mass; concelebrants included members of the Tagaste and St. Cloud communities as well as Recollects of the St. Nicholas Delegation and local clergy. Brother Joe’s sister Pauline Denault and cousins Elaine and Roger Le Blanc were on hand along with a great number of Secular Augustinian Recollects, Guild members, and friends of the Monastery who were present for both the wake and funeral Mass. Following the Mass, Brother Joe was buried in the community plot at Ascension Cemetery in Monsey, New York; afterward, a lunch was provided by the Guild for all of the guests. Brother Joe had been in residence at Tagaste for some 40 years. He will be remembered not only in the affections of all of his brothers at the Monastery and in the Province, but also in the many artistic creations and practical improvements he left behind in virtually every room at Tagaste. Rest in Peace, Brother Joe!


Br. Joseph Joly, OAR, arrives at Tagaste on August 28 to celebrate his 55th anniversary of profession of vows (l to r): Fr. Michael Rafferty, OAR, Br. Joe (seated), Fra. José Arredondo, OAR, and Fra. George Valdivia, OAR.



Last Updated on Wednesday, 04 February 2015 15:04
Bishop Lacunza: “with everyone’s prayers, I aim only to be faithful to the mission entrusted to me” PDF Print E-mail
Written by augustinian recollects   
Tuesday, 20 January 2015 16:07

When bishop Lacunza had scarcely begun to take on board the idea of his new position, this official site of the Order of Augustinian Recollects put to him a few simple question, to which he was kind enough to reply.

At the conclusion of his Sunday Angelus on 4th January, Pope Francis announced the creation of twenty new cardinals from 14 nations, effective from 14th February. He also emphasized that they“show the inseparable link between the Church of Rome and the local Churches present throughout the world”.

One of those nominated was Bishop Jose Luis Lacunza Maestrojuan, the Augustinian Recollect bishop of David (Panama). It is the first time that a pastor of the Panamanian Church has received this distinction, and the first time that an Augustinian Recollect has been made a cardinal.

-As a bishop and as an Augustinian Recollect, how do you feel at being named a cardinal of the Church by Pope Francis?

I am the first Panamanian bishop and the first Augustinian Recollect to be called to the College of Cardinals, and being the first one always creates a big responsibility given that in one sense it is blazing a path, and for good or for bad can affect the future. Whatever the case, the nomination has left me stunned, and I’m still not out of my sense of amazement. And of course, I’m very much aware that all this goes beyond me personally and also involves the Church in Panama and the Order of Augustinian Recollects.

-What is your mission within the Church going to be? What are your wishes?

On the one hand, so far as I am aware, Pope Francis has no other plans than that I should continue as bishop of David; so I shall have to continue with the pastoral mission I have been carrying out until now. On the other hand, I will have to add on the responsibilities that the office creates as a member of one of the Vatican departments, attending consistories and fulfilling the tasks entrusted to me by the Holy Father. In all this, I shall endeavor to be a motivating force, helping the Pope to carry out his vision and mission for the Church. With everyone’s prayers, I aim only to be faithful to the mission entrusted to me.

-What message do you have for the whole Augustinian Recollect family: friars, contemplative nuns, female religious, fraternities, members of the Augustinian Recollect Youth?

I have received many messages from brothers and sisters congratulating me and also congratulating themselves on this appointment. I believe it should be interpreted as the Pope looking at our religious community which, although small – we could say ‘on the outskirts’ of the Church – has much to offer in the revitalization of the consecrated life, so that freed from the restrictions and the trappings which have accumulated over the years, it can offer to the world a living, consistent, and joyful image of the Gospel which can and must give full meaning to the man and woman of today. Let’s hope we can get the most out of this Year of the Consecrated Life.

The first Augustinian Recollect Cardinal.

The news spread rapidly throughout the world, but the appointment of bishop Lacunza has had a particular impact in Panama and amongst the Augustinian Recollects. Going back to the start of the Augustinian Recollection in 1588, bishop Lacunza will be the first cardinal the Order has had.

The prior general of the Augustinian Recollects, Miguel Miro, was in Brazil carrying out his visit of renewal to the community of Portel in the prelature of Marajo. From there he got in touch with bishop Lacunza to congratulate him, and offer him his services and the prayers of the entire Augustinian Recollect family. Congratulations and messages of support and of thanks have been coming in from the nineteen countries in which the Order is present.

Celebrations in Rome and Panama.

Bishop Lacunza will be going to Rome to take part in the celebration during which Pope Francis will install the new cardinals on 14th February. He will then return to Panama to participate in the national pilgrimage to the basilica of Atalaya together with the other bishops of the country, and on 23rd February will make his entrance to his diocese of David.

(from the OAR website: agustinosrecoletos.com)


Last Updated on Tuesday, 20 January 2015 16:13
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