Auxiliary Bishop Jorge Rodriguez of Denver will celebrate a Spanish-language Mass for immigrants and refugees on the Solemnity of Christ the King, Nov. 26, at Denver’s Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception.
The Solemnity of Christ the King is a day historically significant to many Hispanics. In the 1920s, Catholic persecution in Mexico led to a 10-year conflict between the Catholic “Cristeros” and the government. Mexican Catholics, lay and clergy, were killed proclaiming “¬°Viva Cristo Rey!” or “Long live Christ the King.”
The mass will be attended by Berenice Rendón Talavera, Consul General of Mexico, and Juan Fernando Valey, Consul de Guatemala.
Bishop Rodriguez has called for more support for migrants at the parish level in the Archdiocese of Denver, stating that the Gospels direct Catholics to lovingly welcome immigrants with generosity.
“Holy Scripture is very clear about the care and hospitality toward the immigrant,” Rodriguez said, according to a Nov. 21 press release.
“‘The stranger who sojourns with you shall be to you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself; for you were strangers in the land of Egypt’ (Lev. 19:34).”
The bishop acknowledged the difficult legal battles many immigrants face, and expressed hope that the Mass would bring consolation to those who face deportation, as well as their families.
“Many of our youth see their future dreams threatened. Siblings and friends, who came to work honestly, face deportation, and parents, couples and families have been torn apart,” Rodriguez said.
“We want to lift up the intentions of the immigrant community in this Mass,” the bishop said. “For the Psalmist says, ‘Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him, and he will act.”
After the Mass, a reception will be held at a nearby Knights of Columbus Hall, where there will be a performance of Ballet Folklórico and brief remarks from Bishop Rodriguez.