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I was able to watch the papal Mass on streaming video from EWTN, it was beautiful.  I have to say the only down side was having to listen to Fr. Richard Neuhaus and Raymond Arroyo doing a play by play during the Mass.  It was quite frustrating and annoying to listen to, what to me seemed, incessant whining about the music selections for the Mass.  While the faithful were being uplifted and filled with joy, those two seemed eager to rain on their parade.   Please allow us to view and experience the Mass and let it unfold for us, it is not the PGA tour for heaven’s sake.  ¡Viva el Papa!

MACC President Dr. Arturo Chávez, and Archbishop José Gómez of San Antonio, on the South Lawn of the White House,  after welcoming our Holy Father to the US.

 

 On April 16, the Mexican American Cultural Center (MACC) had the privledge of sending a representative to welcome the Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI to the White House.

Arturo Chávez, Ph.D., President of MACC said, “What an honor! The Holy Father radiated God’s universal love for all people…of every race and nation. “

“The Pope  described this love as a banquet table that God has prepared…where all of His children are welcomed! This  is exactly the vision we are working towards through our ministry at MACC…to foster unity in our diversity through an encounter with the Risen Lord Jesus, who continues to walk among us as a stranger who longs to enter the home of our hearts,” said Dr. Chávez.

As you may know our Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI will be arriving soon to the US.  He had a letter in preparation for his visit, I thought it meant alot that part of his message was in Spanish!  He knows that many of us are muy católicos!  I remember when John Paul came to San Anto and had a gathering en el mero hueso (El West Side) at Plaza Guadalupe.  What an honor for la raza to have the pope visit them in one of the poorest and proudest, and most religious, places in the city.  El primo Joe Lopez, of Gallista Gallery, participated in the making of a poster commemorating the visit in 1987.  Way to go Joe!

This time around, the president of the Mexican American Cultural Center (MACC), here in San Antonio, will be going to Washington DC to meet pope Benedict.  MACC was invited by the bishops of the US.  ¡Que viva el Papa!

Here is his the Pope’s message: 

Dear Brothers and Sisters in the United States of America,

The grace and peace of God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ be with all of you! In just a few days from now, I shall begin my apostolic visit to your beloved country. Before setting off, I would like to offer you a heartfelt greeting and an invitation to prayer. As you know, I shall only be able to visit two cities: Washington and New York. The intention behind my visit, though, is to reach out spiritually to all Catholics in the United States. At the same time, I earnestly hope that my presence among you will be seen as a fraternal gesture towards every ecclesial community, and a sign of friendship for members of other religious traditions and all men and women of good will. The risen Lord entrusted the apostles and the Church with his Gospel of love and peace, and his intention in doing so was that the message should be passed on to all peoples.

At this point I should like to add some words of thanks, because I am conscious that many people have been working hard for a long time, both in Church circles and in the public services, to prepare for my journey. I am especially grateful to all who have been praying for the success of the visit, since prayer is the most important element of all. Dear friends, I say this because I am convinced that without the power of prayer, without that intimate union with the Lord, our human endeavors would achieve very little. Indeed this is what our faith teaches us. It is God who saves us, he saves the world, and all of history. He is the shepherd of his people. I am coming, sent by Jesus Christ, to bring you his word of life.

Together with your bishops, I have chosen as the theme of my journey three simple but essential words: “Christ our hope.” Following in the footsteps of my venerable predecessors, Paul VI and John Paul II, I shall come to United States of America as Pope for the first time, to proclaim this great truth: Jesus Christ is hope for men and women of every language, race, culture, and social condition. Yes, Christ is the face of God present among us. Through him, our lives reach fullness, and together, both as individuals and peoples, we can become a family united by fraternal love, according to the eternal plan of God the Father.

I know how deeply rooted this Gospel message is in your country. I am coming to share it with you, in a series of celebrations and gatherings. I shall also bring the message of Christian hope to the great assembly of the United Nations, to the representatives of all the peoples of the world. Indeed, the world has greater need of hope than ever: hope for peace, for justice, and for freedom; but this hope can never be fulfilled without obedience to the law of God, which Christ brought to fulfillment in the commandment to love one another. Do to others as you would have them do to you, and avoid doing what you would not want them to do. This “golden rule” is given in the Bible, but it is valid for all people, including non-believers. It is the law written on the human heart; on this we can all agree, so that when we come to address other matters we can do so in a positive and constructive manner for the entire human community.

Dirijo un cordial saludo a los católicos de lengua española y les manifiesto mi cercanía espiritual, en particular a los jóvenes, a los enfermos, a los ancianos y a los que pasan por dificultades o se sienten más necesitados. Les expreso mi vivo deseo de poder estar pronto con Ustedes en esa querida Nación. Mientras tanto, les aliento a orar intensamente por los frutos pastorales de mi inminente Viaje Apostólico y a mantener en alto la llama de la esperanza en Cristo Resucitado.

Dear brothers and sisters, dear friends in the United States, I am very much looking forward to being with you. I want you to know that, even if my itinerary is short, with just a few engagements, my heart is close to all of you, especially to the sick, the weak, and the lonely. I thank you once again for your prayerful support of my mission. I reach out to every one of you with affection, and I invoke upon you the maternal protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Interesting opinion piece, no wonder the gov’t is moving so slow to overhaul the system, de facto slavery works just fine.

April 2, 2008
NY TIMES EDITORIAL

Immigration is good for the financial health of Social Security because more workers mean more tax revenue. Illegal immigration, it turns out, is even better than legal immigration. In the fine print of the 2008 annual report on Social Security, released last week, the program’s trustees noted that growing numbers of “other than legal” workers are expected to bolster the program over the coming decades.

One reason is that many undocumented workers pay taxes during their work lives but don’t collect benefits later. Another is that undocumented workers are entering the United States at ever younger ages and are expected to have more children while they’re here than if they arrived at later ages. The result is a substantial increase in the number of working-age people paying taxes, but a relatively smaller increase in the number of retirees who receive benefits — a double boon to Social Security’s bottom line.

We’re not talking chump change. According to the report, the taxes paid by other-than-legal immigrants will close 15 percent of the system’s projected long-term deficit. That’s equivalent to raising the payroll tax by 0.3 percentage points, starting today.

That is not to suggest that illegal immigration is a legitimate fix to Social Security’s problems. It is another reminder, however, of the nation’s complex relationship with undocumented workers. Would the people who want to deport all undocumented workers be willing to make up the difference and pay the taxes that the undocumented are currently paying?

It is also a reminder of Social Security’s dynamism. As society and the economy evolve, so does the system, responding not only to changes in immigration and fertility, but also in wage growth and other variables. As such, it is adaptable to the 21st century, if only the political will can be found to champion the necessary changes. Those include modest tax increases and moderate benefit cuts that could be phased in over decades — provided the country gets started soon.

Message from the President of the Mexican American Cultural Center -MACC:

Dear Friends:

We received a very special invitation to attend the arrival ceremony of Pope Benedict XVI to be held at the White House on Wednesday April 16. 

We were recommended by the USCCB and the Archdiocese of Washington.  This certainly says so much about MACC’s good work in the Church!

I have the honor of representing MACC at this historic event.  

Arturo Chávez, Ph.D.

 

 

 

I just heard from a classmate from my high school years at St. Anthony here in San Antonio.  It made me start to reminesce about the old days… I remember we had a festival one year where a Conjunto band played. They were called Los Hermanos Villarreal.  It was three brothers and their dad.  Why do I remember them? because they later became Los Desperadoz!  It is amazing how things happen because they performed before a rock band with a St. Anthony student on drums (Joey Machado for anyone curious).  I don’t remember the name of that band but I do remember that they played what was hot at the time: Loverboy, REO, etc.  Anyways, it is always good to relive the glory days! lol.  Go ‘Jackets!