New Partners in Mission at St. Gerard Majella Catholic Church in Baton Rouge
New Partners in Mission at St. Gerard Majella Catholic Church in Baton Rouge

15 New Redemptorist Associates to Proclaim the Good News

For the past 12 months, Fr. Tat Hoang, C.Ss.R., has been working with a group of 15 people who are parishioners, volunteers and friends of the Redemptorist and St. Gerard Majella Catholic Church in Baton Rouge. They all expressed an interest in learning more about St. Alphonsus and the mission of the Redemptorist Congregation. Fr. Tat has not only been educating them on the Redemptorists and Redemptorist Saints and Blesseds but also on his vision for St. Gerard Parish and School. The new Redemptorist Associates are: Gregory Accardo, Cherie Bailey, William Bailey, Mike Bourgeois, Mary, Elizabeth Broussard, Sandra Brown, Kelly Hayes, Mike Hayes, Peter Ketchens, Sr., Valencia Jackson, Gina Leyrer, Enola Miller, Tommy Murphy, Tina Kieu-Hanh Nguyen, David Richard and Michael Vincent. Being drawn to Christ the Redeemer these men and women desire to support the Redemptorists in their mission and to be supported by them.

The group wanted to take on a ministry that would connect with Alphonsus’ desire to serve the poor and most abandoned, as well as with the Redemptorists’ current mission to heal a broken world. They also wanted to do something that would help support Fr. Tat’s vision for St. Gerard’s. After much investigation and discussion, they chose to focus on the school. Redemptorist St. Gerard’s school has certainly been a primary focus for Fr. Tat during his first four years as pastor, and it has taken a lot of work to get it to where it is right now. All agreed that the school was not only extremely important for the future of the parish, but for the future of the whole neighborhood. As a way to show support and encouragement for the teachers, staff and students, the group has provided special meals for the teachers and staff, including a Christmas party complete with some small gifts. They have also been helping the teachers with such items as school supplies.

During our 10 am mass on the Epiphany of the Lord, Frs. Tim Watson, Css.R. and Tuan Pham, C.Ss.R., Local Superior, joined us for the initiating ceremony. Fr. Tuan led the group in taking their oath and then gave them certificates as Redemptorist Partners in Mission. They also received Redemptorist crosses and were encouraged to wear them as a way of spreading the news of the Redemptorist mission here at St. Gerard’s and beyond. After Mass there was a small reception in the Redemptorist house. Fr. Rick Potts, C.Ss.R., shared a little about the history of Partners in Mission as it began in the former St. Louis Province. Then plans were made for the next step, which will include some more learning about Alphonsian spirituality, as well as, how to follow Christ daily in proclaiming the Good News to the poor and the most abandoned as partners with the Redemptorists.