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US Bishops Approve Grants to Support Church in Latin America

Programs Include Indigenous Ministries and Environmental Education Programs

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Subcommittee on the Church in Latin America awarded in excess of $3.5 million in funding in the form of 215 grants to support the pastoral work of the Church in Latin America and the Caribbean. The grants were presented at the Subcommittee’s meeting on June 11 in Baltimore, Maryland, and approved by teleconference on June 21, 2019.

Projects that received funding for pastoral activities include the following:

●   Support and education programs for rural lay communities in their defense of the environment in the Diocese of El Alto, Bolivia.
●   Expansion of child and youth protection training programs to prevent sexual abuse and build safe environments in the Diocese of Petropolis, Brazil. Led by the Brazilian Apostolate Association, the program will train approximately 1,000 seminarians, teachers, and school staff throughout the diocese.
●   Education and formation of youth leaders in Garifuna communities throughout rural Honduras.
●   Support to the Paraguayan Conference of Bishops’ Indigenous Ministry, as it celebrates its 50th Anniversary. The grant will fund efforts to promote the Indigenous Ministry and educate new seminarians, priests, and bishops about the reality of the indigenous peoples in Paraguay so that they can better serve these marginalized communities.
●   Education programs led by the Loyola Center in Ayacucho, Peru, to engage young people, adults, and the general population around the upcoming Amazon Synod’s goals and their importance to the local population.
●   Youth outreach in the Diocese of Paramaribo in Suriname. This project will assist the formational and spiritual development of young people, culminating in a diocesan youth festival.

“The Collection for the Church in Latin America is one tangible expression of the reality that we are one Church with one mission. Through the generosity of Catholics in the United States, communities throughout Latin America will be able to grow closer to Christ,” said Bishop Octavio Cisneros, auxiliary bishop of Brooklyn and chairman of the Subcommittee on the Church in Latin America.

Other areas of funding include lay leadership training, catechesis, seminarian and religious formation, prison ministry, and youth and family ministries. Grants are funded by the annual Collection for the Church in Latin America, taken in many dioceses across the U.S. on the fourth Sunday in January.

The Subcommittee on the Church in Latin America oversees the collection and an annual grant program as part of the USCCB Committee on National Collections. It allocates revenue received from the Collection for the Church in Latin America as grants across Latin America and the Caribbean. More information about the Collection for the Church in Latin America, and the many grants it funds, as well as resources to promote it across the country, can be found at www.usccb.org/latin-america

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