Friday, April 27, 2007

Sumner County Catholics support Spanish-speakers

"Parishioners who yearned to hear the word of God in their native language"

The Tennessean reported in this story that Sumner County Catholic churches are supportive of a groundswell in demand for Spanish-speaking mass and religious gatherings in various churches. The article lists three specific congregations and cites one reverend who visits five Spanish-speaking communities weekly.

"Diorka Ortega, a Cuban from West Palm Beach, Fla., said the idea for a Spanish-language Mass at Our Lady of the Lake started with a few parishioners who yearned to hear the word of God in their native language."

"'We had seven families that got together and proposed it to Father Bevington and the congregation. Everyone was so supportive,' said Ortega, who serves as the coordinator for the church's Hispanic ministry."

"Ortega said that the Spanish-language Mass began at Our Lady of the Lake about a year ago, with about 30 in attendance. 'Now, we have about 200 people who attend on a regular basis,' she said. Ortega attributed the rapid rise to word of mouth in a close-knit Hispanic community."

"She said that the Hispanic parishioners 'come from all over Latin America … Panama, Mexico, Colombia, Ecuador, Argentina and Peru. (Hispanics) are a growing part of the population, and there's a real need for spiritual enhancement in their lives,' Ortega said."

Read full story here

Photo by Tracy

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