Steven and I attended ten o’clock Mass at Immaculate Conception Church in Taft, TX.
On December 4, 2012, Grand Knight of Council 15512, Herman Rodriguez, extended an invitation to all fourth-degree Knights of Columbus within the diocese to assist at the presentation and veneration of the first-class relic of Blessed José Luis Sánchez del Río (Joselito) on the eighty-fifth anniversary of his death, February 10, 2013.
Although Steven and I had heard about the persecution of priests in Mexico from a Franciscan at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in Hebbronville, TX, we’d never heard of Joselito until we viewed For Greater Glory (2012) last year.
Sympathetic to Joselito’s story and very much interested in his relic, Steven responded right away.
My wife and I will be delighted to attend the ceremony, and I’ll be falling out in full regalia with you. It will be an honor.
We’d awaited our first visit to Taft with great anticipation. What excitement to finally see the church, show support for the parish, and enjoy the festivities. Parishioners were welcoming, everyone was cordial, and Father Lopez was everywhere all at once. Mass was standing room only, and most in attendance took part in the solemn procession.
I’d been anxious about barking dogs running out onto the streets as we circled the block, but the neighborhood was so peaceful that we were able to focus on the rosary before returning to church for the icing on the cake.
Spending quality time one-on-one with Blessed José Luis Sánchez del Río through his precious relic was very special, so no one rushed. Some sat as others waited their turn in line. Some observed while others quietly conversed. Father Ed Roche sang to a child before reminiscing with us about Father Mike Jordan, a fellow SOLT in heaven since July 2012. Yet the smiles on the two Dominicans, Sisters Patricia and Elena whom we met before leaving church, reflected our collective joy most of all.
As Steven and I talked about the celebration on our drive home, he chuckled. “I’m in awe of the Knights. I don’t know how they got the neighbors to keep their pets quiet and out of sight, but they pulled it off! Simply amazing.”
Honoring Joselito, thanks to the concerted efforts of the Immaculate Conception Church community, was a momentous occasion that we were blessed to have experienced.
Devotion… I do not wish to fight, live, or die except for you, my Lord, and for your holy Church. Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe, be at my side in the agony of this poor sinner. Grant that my last shout on earth and my first canticle in heaven be ¡Viva Cristo Rey!
Petition… Blessed José Luis, watch over, defend and protect all of the children whose innocence is threatened from all sides by evil, direct their hearts to all that is good and holy, and instill in their hearts a living faith and confidence in the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ, our King and Lord. Amen.
Links of interest… Biographies of new Blesseds (2005)… Blessed José Luis Sánchez del Río… about… beatification… biography… blessed… facebook… feast… martyr
… martyrdom… memorial… patron (ECyD)… pray for… story… Cristero War (La Cristiada)… Exposition of relics… For Greater Glory (background)… Immaculate Conception Church: article / diocese page / parishes online… Mexican government versus the Catholic Church… Mexico’s forgotten pain… Of saints & sinners in a fevered Mexico… Persecution of Christians in Mexico… Sacred relics… Treasures of the Church: about relics / expositions / healing / home / photo gallery / prayer requests / who we are… What Mexico teaches us…
Filed under: Blessed José Luis Sánchez del Río, churches, holy relics, prayer, spiritual gifts Tagged: | building community, God's master plan, Immaculate Conception Church-Taft TX, overcoming adversity