In the last 6 weeks, nearly 2,000 children have been separated from their parents at the Texas border. Separating children from their parents often leads to long-term emotional scarring. Particularly for these families who are already in a state of anxiety and fear, the impact on both the children and the parents, will no doubt be long-lasting. As a people of faith, we must speak out for these children.

The teaching of the Catholic Church is that if a person is experiencing injustice, persecution, or danger, they have a human right to find a place of security in which to begin a new life. We believe in the dignity of the human person and the preservation of the family. Nations are encouraged to create laws that will allow legal immigration in a just way. As a church we have never suggested, “Open our borders – all are welcome”, yet countries must regulate their borders with justice and mercy. We believe immigration should be guided by laws that show charity while providing safety and security. Our current immigration laws are not guided by these principles and are not fair or just.

Let us recall the principle in Jewish law and the teaching of Jesus, “Do to others what you would have them do to you” (Luke 6:31). We are called to pray for those unjustly treated and to be a voice for them. I invite all people of good will to join me in prayer for our sisters and brothers and to act on their behalf by contacting our government officials and urging them to stop these dehumanizing practices and make a sincere effort towards comprehensive immigration.


Dear OLDP Parishioners,

I’d like to start with a brief personal introduction. My wife Amanda and I – both came from Nicaragua in the early 80s – have been married for almost 27 years. Our two children, Roberto and Alexandra, have both attended our own OLDP School from K - 8th Grade (hard to believe that 8th Grade, even some 7th Grade at Catholic Schools is a thing of the past).

It is with a deep sense of humility that I accept this call to serve God’s people as an Ordained Deacon of the Catholic Church, especially to the people of our OLDP Parish. This Parish has seen me grow spiritually, as a family, and as an active member of this Parish for almost 30 years.

My Diaconate Formation journey to become an Ordained Deacon began five years ago, but it was a call from above I had received long before I began this process. As a family, we were just not ready since our children, at the time, were still in school and we believed that our primary role as parents was to give them our time as much as we could. Once I began the Formation process it did not come easy or without obstacles, but I was not alone, much credit goes to my wife Amanda who was there all along, attending classes, activities, retreats, helping me and guiding me with assignments, she was a pillar in this journey. Jesus and I had long conversations; many times, I tried to tell Him that this thing of becoming a Deacon was not for me, to pick somebody else, and I am sure you all know who won those discussions. He reminded me that before I even started my Formation process, he had already chosen me as His work-in-progress at OLDP; where I served in many different ministries until He gave me the “green light” to move onto Formation. Some of those ministries included proclaiming the Word of God, Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist, preparing couples for marriage and for baptisms, playing the tambourine at our Spanish Mass choir (OK, the last one was not much of a ministry since I cannot carry a tune to save my life, let alone the life of others!).

As we celebrate this weekend the birth of St. John the Baptist, we are all called to announce the Good News, to be messengers of Christ our Redeemer and, in a way, to serve as He came to serve in the salvific plan for all of us. As an ordained Deacon of the Catholic Church, and an active member of this Parish, I pledge my service to Jesus and his Church, especially to our OLDP Parish.

As a close-knit family, God has been present in our lives and has blessed us with all we have. Serving God’s people and at the Altar is the very least I can do, in a small way, to give back to him with a spirit of humility, obedience, charity and faithfulness. My family and I are deeply grateful for all the prayers many of you have offered for me while I went through this Formation process. Please continue to pray for me and for those who have been called to serve God’s people, in a very special way for our Pastor Mike Mitchell.

God bless you,
Deacon Garcia