Sept. 15-Oct. 15 of every year in the United States we celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. This celebration began as a weeklong celebration by President Lyndon Johnson and became a monthlong celebration during Ronald Reagan's presidency in 1988. Across the United States schools, colleges, community organizations and churches celebrate.
This is a great opportunity to celebrate the faith and cultures from which the Hispanics come from and also learn the contributions that Hispanics have made to the United States. It is an opportunity for the children of the Hispanics to be proud of where their families came from and to learn more about their culture and their faith.
It gives our churches the opportunity to teach their parishioners of the faith, culture and values of the largest growing population in the Catholic Church here in the U.S. It is also an opportunity to learn more about the National V Encuentro that is taking place in Grapevine, Texas with a gathering of over 3,000 uniting to put together a pastoral plan for the Hispanic Church in the United States. The plan will be used for years to come in the ministering to Hispanics and also help the whole Church work together as we go forth to be Missionary Disciples: Witnesses of God's Love. There will be 10 delegates representing the Diocese of Buffalo including Bishop Richard J. Malone.
The theme for this year's Hispanic Heritage Month Diocesan Mass Celebration is "Hope, an Anchor of the Soul, Sure and Firm." The Hispanic/Latino Commission of the Office of Cultural Diversity is planning a special celebration together with the Hispanic Heritage Council of WNY Inc. This celebration will be taking place Sept. 16, at St. Joseph Cathedral, 50 Franklin St., Buffalo, at 10:30 a.m. Following the Mass will be a reception downstairs with dishes from the various Hispanic cultures represented here in our diocese. Everyone is welcome to come and join us in this celebration.