This past January 7-11, Fr. Anthony Stoeppel went to Puebla, Mexico to give ongoing formation in Church management in Spanish to the members of the Siervos de Jesús. This relatively new community has over 50 priests serving in Mexico, Honduras, and Spain. The vicar general of the Siervos, Fr. Carlos Balderas, participated in PCM’s intensive weeks during the first cohort, and then subsequently asked Fr. Anthony to offer similar content to their community as a whole. The superior general, p. Francisco Javier Almanza Terrazas, shared what the course in Puebla meant for him and his community: “In the Spiritual Exercises, which guides us in applying the gospel to our spirituality, St. Ignatius of Loyola indicates in the Principle and Foundation (n. 23) that there is a rule for the use of temporal goods given to us by God: use them inasmuch as they help us achieve the end for which we have been created. Now, as a fruit of Fr. Anthony’s successful course, this ‘inasmuch’ has concrete meaning and applications in our personal lives, for our community, and in our various missions. And for this we are doubly thankful.”
In addition to teaching concrete ways that pastors implement accountability, transparency, stewardship, and controls in their parishes through preaching and good governance, Fr. Anthony learned much from his Mexican audience. “I’d never visited Mexico before, so this experience gave me an opportunity to see the way parishes operate and the Mexican people live their faith. I hope to translate this new knowledge into something that equips American parishes with the tools they need to integrate more easily Spanish-speaking immigrant families into their new reality.