On a Mission…

Bob Harry was hard at work with fellow parishioners Phil Hoseman, Clay Fryer, Eddie Alvarez and Mike Tarrillion at Eagle Pass Mission Trip.

  • Dick Horstman

    Jul 10, 2017 at 2:41 pm

    Sometime around the year 2000 a few parishioners from St. John Vianney and Epiphany started a relationship with a Catholic girls orphanage in Piedras Negras, Mexico, across the river from Eagle Pass. We did repairs and improvements as requested by the Sisters who staffed the orphanage, and prepared meals and entertained the girls to give the Sisters a break. We coordinated the trips through Sister Ursula Herrara, who is a Benedictine Sister in Eagle Pass.

    About that time we got a new pastor, Father Troy, and he wanted a parish mission. Sal Guttilla was Director of SJV Social Services at the time. Sal and I asked Sister Ursula if there was anything we could do on this side of the river. Her quick response — “There sure is.” The areas along the Rio Grande are some of the poorest areas in the United States. Sister Ursula suggested that we do home repairs for the elderly and handicapped poor. The Benedictine Sisters have a large mission house in Eagle Pass at which we were invited to stay. By then I was on the Archdiocesan Mission Council so I asked Father Gerry Kelly, a Maryknoll Missioner and fellow committee member if he would join us. He gave an enthusiastic “Yes”.

    The first parish mission to Eagle Pass was in March 2010. It was the 12 apostles, Father Gerry and 11 parishioners. We started with an Eagle Pass mission in March and October every year. After a couple years we expanded to two missions in the Spring and two in the Fall. One of the Spring missions is scheduled so the seminarians from St. Mary’s Seminary can join us during their spring break . That Spring mission now coincides with the Eagle Pass spring break mission of the Houston Catholic High Schools, who will help mentor. The past two summers we have partnered with SJV Youth Formation on a Youth Mission to Eagle Pass, and next January we will partner with the Young Adults on a Young Adult Mission to Eagle Pass.

    In addition to the missions to Eagle Pass, several years ago we joined St. Thomas More in sponsoring a medical mission to El Salvador. The medical mission is under the umbrella of Helping Hands, an apostolate of the Legionnaires of Christ. St. John Vianney and St. Thomas More buy and ship the medicines and other supplies and recruit parishioners to staff the mission. Our parishioners are joined by medical personnel from around the country who are recruited by Helping Hands.

  • Bill Conroy

    Jun 14, 2017 at 11:02 am

    if you do more projects let me know, I will help.