Winter 2019 

Dear Friends in Christ,

Our ever loving God never fails to bless us. The celebration of Christmas and the blessings it brings comes at the most opportune time in our world. The incarnation of Christ, becoming man one like us except for sin, to be our Savior gives us hope. It is a significant moment how God made heaven meet earth. Christ came not just to save us but also to bless the world and every one of us with His abiding love and saving presence. We are reminded, He is the Emmanuel, which means, "God is with us" (Mt.1:23), to give us fullness of life and abundant joy.

Christmas is a wonderful time to reflect the mystery of God's love and the meaning of what we are celebrating. The gift of His Only Son Jesus Christ reveals the precious value of every human person. The special message of His birth rings loud in the midst of the blatant assault against the dignity and sanctity of life by the senseless killing of innocent lives through abortion, our insensitivity to the plight of the poor and the marginalized, especially those forced to flee their home due to poverty, violence, injustice and natural calamities. These bring tremendous sufferings that test our faith in God and people's belief in the goodness of humanity.

The birth of Christ reminds us of the simple and absolute truth that God cares for us, that we are precious in His eyes, worthy of living and dying for. It offers hope, love and peace that our world badly needs. He calls us to share and live this Good News in concrete actions of kindness, understanding, generosity, justice, compassion and mercy.
Christmas is the day of fulfillment  and salvation has come to us in Christ. 

The greatest manifestation of the merciful love of God has been revealed to us. As God shared His Son to us, we share Christ's gift of peace and joy to one another. Let us live the true spirit and wonder of Christmas with deep faith in its power to transform our world, that true and abiding peace reign again in our midst.

I wish you all the joyful blessings of this Holy Season and I pray that your celebration of Christmas with your family and friends is filled with lasting happiness and peace. Give thanks for the Good News of our salvation, give God Glory and let us all welcome in our heart, Jesus Christ our Savior.

A blessed and Merry Christmas!

Bishop Oscar Solis, Diocese of Salt Lake City   
Chairman, Subcommittee on Asian and Pacific Islanders 

News
       1. Christmas Reflections
  • Read a reflection by Jem Sullivan, Ph.D., SCAPA consultant, about how our encounter with Jesus as we celebrate Christmas leads us to encounter him in one another, through our cultural, generational, religious identities, etc.
  • Read a reflection from Fr. Hongshik Don Bosco Park , Vice President of the Korean American Priests Association (KAPA), about how Christmas is the time to share the gift of Jesus Christ. 
2.  Encountering Christ in Harmony: A Gathering of Pastoral Leaders -read an article that provides highlights of a gathering of pastoral leaders across the country which was held on November 8-9, 2019 in Baltimore, MD.
 
3.  Watch these video clips by Bishop Oscar Solis:  Encountering Christ in Harmony brief reflection and Introduction to Encountering Christ in Harmony . You are welcome to use and share these downloadable resources, but please credit the author USCCB for the work.

4.  National Asian & Pacific Island Young Adult (API YA) Advisory Team - Get to know some of the members of the National API YA Advisory Team who will assist in bringing forth the message of the bishops, planning and strategizing, and addressing the young adults and youth, in regard to the USCCB statement Encountering Christ in Harmony: A Pastoral Response to Our Asian and Pacific Island Brothers and Sisters. We will continue to highlight the members of the API YA Advisory Team in future issues of our e-newsletter.
Upcoming Events
Visit our News and Events page for links and PDF's. 
  • Simbang Gabi Mass Schedules from various (arch)dioceses - Many archdioceses and dioceses celebrate Simbang Gabi, a Filipino tradition of Novena Masses (nine consecutive days) celebrated in parishes across the country leading up to Christmas. The Archdiocese of Newark's Office of Divine Worship offers "Questions and Answers Regarding the Practice of Simbang Gabi Masses During Advent." In the Philippines, Simbang Gabi is celebrated as "a privileged votive mass, i.e., a mass that does not correspond to the liturgical calendar but has a special intention," said Philippines Church historian Most Rev. Rex Andrew Alarcon. Watch the  Archdiocese of Washington's video explaining what Simbang Gabi is and check our  News & Events page for a list of Simbang Gabi celebrations from various arch/dioceses.
Resources 

Rooted in Tradition: The Chamorro Catholics in the United States (Product Code 7-572) - A new edition to the small book series about a people indigenous to the Mariana Islands in the western Pacific, the Chamorros have a strong Catholic heritage, which they brought with them to the United States.








Resettling in Place: A Vietnamese American Catholic Experience  (Product Code 7-480) - This small book is a snapshot description about a community who rebuilt their faith life by sustaining family values, culture, and Catholic devotional practices.









Harmony in Faith: Korean American Catholics (Product Code 7-479) - This small book on Korean American Catholics connects each believer to their roots in Korea, weaving through thick layers of their history of faith.









Product Code 7-606) - This pastoral letter against racism the US Catholic bishops call on fellow clergy and all Catholics to help change racist attitudes and acts to conform to the moral order established by God, in which men and women of all races are honored as brothers and sisters.