Del Rio – Fourth of July Celebration of Faith and Freedom at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church
This year the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) called all the faithful to celebrate the third annual Fortnight for Freedom, from June 21 to July 4, 2014.
This year’s theme was: “Freedom to Serve”.
The Fortnight for Freedom is a call to action, education and prayer for religious liberty, and conscience protection rights, of faithful Catholics in the United States of America.
In keeping with this mandate issued by our bishops, the Legion of Mary of the Del Rio Catholic Community sponsored the Fourth of July Celebration of Faith and Freedom at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church.
The Bilingual Patriotic Rosary was recited at 11:00 a.m.
Patriotic songs were led by Susan Perez.
Before the Rosary “America” was sung and after the Rosary “America the Beautiful” was sung.
Alternating decades of the Rosary were prayed in English and Spanish and each Hail Mary was prayed for the intention for each of the 50 states of the United States of America.
After each decade of the Rosary, a verse and refrain of “Mine Eyes Have the Glory – Battle Hymn of the Republic” was sung.
After the Rosary the “Litany for Liberty” and “Prayer for the Protection of Religious Liberty” were prayed by the congregation.
Father Joaquin J. Rojas, M.N.M., Pastor of Our Lady of Guadalupe Church, celebrated the Bilingual Independence Day Mass at 12 noon, assisted by Deacon Juan Padilla.
After Mass there was First Friday Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, which remained exposed until 6:00 p.m. evening Mass.
Everyone was encouraged to spend some time during the afternoon, prayerfully meditating on what God was calling each one of us to do, to preserve and protect our faith and our freedom.
Free, blessed, Patriotic Rosaries were distributed to all who were in attendance.
The Patriotic Rosaries were made with red, white and blue colored beads.
According to custom and tradition, the colors red, white and blue have signified: white – purity and innocence, red – hardiness and valor, blue – vigilance, perseverance and justice.
Those in attendance were invited to take the Patriotic Rosaries home and pray for these virtues to be what our country and all its citizens stand for and represent.
There were two specially designated boards with pictures of those who are currently serving in the military and those who have served in the military.
We recalled in gratitude their service to God and country and were reminded to keep them in our thoughts and prayers.
God bless America!
Submitted by Marian Casillas, Ed.D.