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Bishop Gerald R. Barnes

By Most Rev. Gerald R. Barnes
Bishop of San Bernardino


 As we celebrate Christmas, the birth of our Savior, so much of the season draws us to family. We are inspired by the Holy Family and enriched by recounting their difficult and dangerous journey to the humble surroundings into which God was made flesh among us. We bring it to life each year in Las Posadas, Simbang Gabi and other cultural depictions.

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By Bishop Gerald R. Barnes

 A few years ago I was talking with the mayor of a prominent city in our diocese about the reports of extremely low voter turnout in a recent election. Not Catholic but a man of faith, this mayor said to me very directly that many of those who did not vote were “your people.” He went on to say that if local Catholics voted in greater numbers it would lead to positive change in the city.

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By Most Reverend Gerald R. Barnes

 Few would dispute that Pope Francis has gotten our attention in the first year of his papacy. His emphasis on the core of the Gospel, to be a welcoming Church and to care for the poor, has been embraced by many. The fact that he has done this with such obvious joy and has made a priority of being close to the people in both real and symbolic ways hasn’t hurt either. I mean, did you ever think you’d see the Pope on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine, let alone Time magazine’s “Man of the Year?”

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 Two family-owned businesses take legal action so that they don’t violate the tenets of their faith by providing their employees with contraception and abortifacients as required by the new federal health care law. They prevail in the nation’s highest court.

 Hundreds of children and families from Central America flood into Texas seeking refuge and reconciliation with loved ones, and are subsequently transported to a Border Patrol station in our diocese.

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By Most Reverend Gerald R. Barnes

This is an excerpt from Bishop Gerald Barnes’ homily at the Diocesan Migration Mass, held at Sacred Heart Church in Rancho Cucamonga on January 12.

 There’s a story about this priest who is baptizing a little six-month old infant who is sound asleep, through the questions through the anointing of the chest, through the recitation of the creed. The baby just slept and slept and slept. Well, then it was time to pour the water over the baby’s forehead and the baby woke up. He just woke up and the water flowed on the baby.

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