It was an evening of celebrating the ministry of Beaumont native Archbishop Joseph Fiorenza at the second annual Spirit of Francis Award dinner Feb. 24 in Houston. The award is given by Catholic Extension.
The Spirit of Francis Award is accompanied by a grant to a mission diocese that is served by Catholic Extension. Archbishop Fiorenza chose the Diocese of Beaumont as the 2018 recipient.
Archbishop Fiorenza said he was deeply honored to receive the award and acknowledged the work of Catholic Extension.
“I have witnessed how parishes are kept alive by Catholic Extension,” he said.
Catholic Extension works with mission dioceses and works to keep small faith communities vibrant.
In introducing the archbishop, Cardinal Blase Cupich, archbishop of Chicago, said that Archbishop Fiorenza “is a priest who helps people understand that God is active and working in their lives.”
He said that Archbishop Fiorenza was always concerned that no one was left behind including the unborn, the poor, the migrants, elderly and ill.
The Catholic Extension Spirit of Francis Award recognizes an individual or group who has made a significant impact on the mission of the Catholic Church in America through service or philanthropy. The inaugural recipient of the award in Houston in 2017 was Texas First Lady Cecilia Abbott.
For more on Catholic Extension, go to catholicextension.org