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placeholder April 22, 2013   •   VOL. 51, NO. 8   •   Oakland, CA

Archbishop Alex J. Brunett greets Paul Mugerwa, a graduate of the St. Francis de Sales School of Pastoral Ministry, on March 9 at St. Joseph the Worker Church, Berkeley. Mugerwa is a parishioner at Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Oakland.

Be pilgrims, not tourists, archbishop tells graduates

The graduating class of the St. Francis de Sales School of Pastoral Ministry gathered with family and friends at St. Joseph the Worker Church in Berkeley March 9 to celebrate the completion of their coursework.

Joining them were the graduates of the Master Catechist program.

But before the catechists set out to teach the faith, and the eager new ministers launched into waiting projects in their parishes, Archbishop Alex J. Brunett had a few words for them.

The challenge of bringing people to full conversion "has to start with us," he said in his homily.

"We have to look at ministry as something that pertains to our own life was well," the apostolic administrator told the graduates.

He cautioned them on the difference between compliance and conversion. "If you've just complied, you haven't really finished your matriculation."

He encouraged them to be "all in," to be pilgrims, and not just tourists, on the journey.

Anthony Lau graduated from the School of Pastoral ministry last year, and this year completed his work to become a Master Catechist. The Union City resident not only is an instructor in the RCIA program at St. Leo Church in Oakland, but is working on other ways to minister to the Chinese Catholics of Oakland.

"We found a lot of new immigrants couldn't find a place to go," Lau said. He is working on making literature available about services at St. Leo Parish. But Lau is also trying to find a small space in Chinatown for a chapel that would be available daily.

"There are so many people in Chinatown," he said. He said the Chinese community at St. Leo has about 50 regular attendees. "We need to work on that," he said.

The idea of a small chapel is appealing, he said. Lau said he has heard of other dioceses with urban, ethnic chapels, where people come in at lunch time and "get to know Jesus in the quiet."

It's an expensive proposition, he said. A 300-square-foot space he looked at would cost about $4,000 to rent, he said.

At St. Leo Parish, which is a bus ride away from Chinatown, with no transfer, Lau said, the 12:30 p.m. Mass is celebrated in Cantonese by Father Paul Chen. A potluck meal follows Mass.

RCIA classes, which Lau conducts in Cantonese, are offered at 11 a.m.

"I was asked to lead it," Lau said. "I said, 'If that's what God wants, I'll do it.'"

Classes, which began in February, have drawn as many as 10 people per session. Lau, who is semi-retired, said he is developing his resources. "I spend more time looking up the translations," he said.

But he doesn't mind. "It gives me time to meditate," he said.

Scott and Julie Genung of St. Michael Parish in Livermore graduated from the School of Pastoral Ministry and have begun their ministry work. Theirs is Covenant of Love, which is based on the Alexander House apostolate. This ministry is important to the parish's renewed emphasis on marriage.

School of Pastoral Ministry
Graduates and their parishes:

Judith Brooks, St. Paul of the Shipwreck/ Holy Angels Church, Colma
Craig Colbert, Immaculate Heart of Mary, Brentwood
Bruno Diaz, St. Leander, San Leandro
Megan Elliott, St. Philip Neri, Alameda
Raul Fregoso, St. Michael, Livermore
Julie Genung, St. Michael, Livermore
Scott Genung, St. Michael, Livermore
Carlos Gutierrez, St. Paschal Baylon, Oakland
CeciliaGutierrez, St. Joachim, Hayward
Kevin Keeler, St. Agnes, Concord
Raimon Llanos, St. Catherine of Siena, Vallejo
Mele Fisiilose, Tautuiaki St. Elizabeth, Oakland
Paul Mugerwa, Our Lady of Lourdes, Oakland
Eva Notti, St. Mary Magdalen, Berkeley
Arthur Smit, Mater Dolorosa South San Francisco
Dante G. Suguitan, St. Edward, Newark

Master Catechists
Graduates and their parishes:

Neolinfa Belisario, St. Felicitas, San Leandro
Thomas Booth, St. Bede, Hayward
Denise Clark, St. Isidore, Danville
James Crabtree, Queen of All Saints, Concord
Arthur De Leon, St. Anthony, Oakley
Lyn Ford, St. Isidore, Danville
Raymond Galka, Christ the Light, Oakland
Benjamin Greenbaum, St. John the Baptist, San Lorenzo
Anthony Lau, Our Lady of Guadalupe, Fremont
Salvador Mejia, St. Elizabeth, Oakland
Luzviminda Reyes, St. Anne, Union City
Tony Rodriguez, St. Edward, Newark
Scarlett Salaverria, St. Francis of Assisi, Concord
Marthe Stokowski, St. Isidore, Danville
Janette Thompson, St. Clement, Hayward
Michael Trimble, Catholic Community of Pleasanton
Samuel Vasquez, Queen of All Saints, Concord
Theresa Young, St. Isidore, Danville

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