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Generosity on display at annual ThanksforGiving Mass

Archbishop reminds donors: 'God's love is gratuitous and superabundant'

Truemin Chin, center, from the parish of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Doral, prays during the Thanks-for-Giving Mass celebrated at the Cathedral of St. Mary, Nov. 23, 2019. Chin received the One in Faith award from Archbishop Thomas Wenski.

Photographer: JONATHAN MARTINEZ | FC

Truemin Chin, center, from the parish of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Doral, prays during the Thanks-for-Giving Mass celebrated at the Cathedral of St. Mary, Nov. 23, 2019. Chin received the One in Faith award from Archbishop Thomas Wenski.

MIAMI | One person and two couples were recognized for their commitment to service and generosity during the annual ThanksforGiving Mass celebrated by Archbishop Thomas Wenski at St. Mary Cathedral.

The Mass, celebrated Nov. 23 and coordinated by the archdiocesan Office of Development, recognizes those who donate their time, talent and treasure to support the work of the archdiocese, especially through the annual ABCD — Archbishop’s Charities and Development — appeal.

“As archbishop, I am grateful to you because, through your support of the ABCD, we as a Catholic community in South Florida are truly ‘one in faith, one in hope, and one in charity,’” the archbishop said during the homily. “The ABCD supports the good works of the Church in South Florida above and beyond what happens in our parishes. And this is possible only through your generous stewardship.”

Archbishop Thomas Wenski receives the offertory from Jim and Lourdes Cowgill of St. Sebastian Parish in Fort Lauderdale. The couple received the One in Hope award during the Thanks-for-Giving Mass celebrated at the Cathedral of St. Mary, Nov. 23, 2019.

Photographer: JONATHAN MARTINEZ | FC

Archbishop Thomas Wenski receives the offertory from Jim and Lourdes Cowgill of St. Sebastian Parish in Fort Lauderdale. The couple received the One in Hope award during the Thanks-for-Giving Mass celebrated at the Cathedral of St. Mary, Nov. 23, 2019.

Archbishop Thomas Wenski gives Truemin Chin, from the parish of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Doral, the One in Faith award during the Thanks-for-Giving Mass celebrated at the Cathedral of St. Mary, Nov. 23, 2019.

Photographer: JONATHAN MARTINEZ | FC

Archbishop Thomas Wenski gives Truemin Chin, from the parish of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Doral, the One in Faith award during the Thanks-for-Giving Mass celebrated at the Cathedral of St. Mary, Nov. 23, 2019.

Archbishop Thomas Wenski gives Jim and Lourdes Cowgill, from the parish of St. Sebastian in Fort Lauderdale, the One in Hope award during the Thanks-for-Giving Mass celebrated at the Cathedral of St. Mary, Nov. 23, 2019.

Photographer: JONATHAN MARTINEZ | FC

Archbishop Thomas Wenski gives Jim and Lourdes Cowgill, from the parish of St. Sebastian in Fort Lauderdale, the One in Hope award during the Thanks-for-Giving Mass celebrated at the Cathedral of St. Mary, Nov. 23, 2019.

The first award, called One in Faith, recognized Truemin Chin from the parish of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Doral. Chin was chosen because she represents excellence in evangelization and is firmly committed to spreading the Good News by helping others to see the fullness of life in Christ.

Chin said she felt “humbled and at peace’’ while hearing the archbishop speak at the Mass. She also thanked her pastor, Father Israel Mago, and the whole parish community for their support over the years.

“I felt their prayers and that is what gave me a sense of peace. Everything I’ve done, I’ve done for the Lord and never for recognition,” she added. “This award gave me mixed feelings, but I am grateful for it. I encourage everyone to follow their hearts, have a personal relationship with God and allow him to guide you and open yourself up to his grace.”

The second award, One in Hope, recognized Jim and Lourdes Cowgill from the parish of St. Sebastian in Fort Lauderdale. They were chosen because they represent the four infinitives of stewardship: receiving God’s gifts gratefully; nurturing God’s gifts responsibly; sharing God’s gifts justly and sacrificially; and returning God’s gifts abundantly.

“I was surprised and humbled when we heard about this recognition,” said Lourdes Cowgill, who has been a parishioner at St. Sebastian for over 30 years. “We’ve always tried to do all that we can and it’s nice to be part of a community that appreciates you. I encourage the current generation to get involved and become a member of the parish family to help ensure the future of the Church.”

The third award, One in Charity, recognized Antonio and Hilda Hernandez from St. Brendan parish in Miami. They were selected because they represent a family who is giving, caring, loyal and loving to their brothers and sisters in need through their constant support of the ABCD. (The Hernandezes could not be present at the Mass and could not be reached for comment by deadline.)

“God’s love is gratuitous and superabundant,” said the archbishop. “His love should inspire within us those values which create generosity, a generosity that transcends a human return, but one that calls us to give selflessly because of the gifts we have been given. As your archbishop, I am grateful — deeply grateful — to each and every one of you for your stewardship.”

“This Mass reminded me of the Masses from my youth in Cuba,” said Lourdes Cowgill. “It made me appreciate the traditions of our Church because it speaks to you no matter the place and time. Watching the incense during the Mass and all the customs took me back to when I was a child. Also, it was great to hear the archbishop speak to the people in three languages: English, Spanish, and Creole. It was a very symbolic and unifying gesture.”

Also during the Mass, nine people — six posthumously — were inducted into the Archbishop Coleman Carroll Legacy Society. Named after Miami’s first bishop, the Society recognizes individuals and families who have included archdiocesan parishes, schools or entities in their estate and financial plans.

The 2019 inductees are: Maria Delgado, Robert Garrity and Ursula Winkler; and posthumously: Stanley Bedminster, Dorothy Berger, Victor Beunza, Helen Devlin, Grace Mason and Dinorah Pancorbo.

FIND OUT MORE

  • To find out more about including the archdiocese in your estate plan, or to let the Office of Planned Giving know about your plans, visit http://adomgift.org/.
Those recognized at the Thanks-for-Giving Mass take part in the reception that followed in the plaza inside the rector of St. Mary Cathedral. The Mass was celebrated Nov. 23, 2019.

Photographer: JONATHAN MARTINEZ | FC

Those recognized at the Thanks-for-Giving Mass take part in the reception that followed in the plaza inside the rector of St. Mary Cathedral. The Mass was celebrated Nov. 23, 2019.

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