We are sorely lacking priests from the Hispanic population in the United States. 35% of Catholics identify as Hispanic, but we only have 5% of priests that identify that way. Thus, we have a huge gap and many Spanish-speaking Catholics are ministered to by priests with which they can’t communicate properly. I knew that we needed to reach the Hispanic population at their parishes to bring awareness to the need for more vocations, especially to the priesthood and religious life.
Leticia (middle of the picture below) and I were introduced by her seminarian son, who said to me, “You have to meet my mom!” Leticia Cantú Ramirez, sister of Bishop Cantú from Las Cruces and mother of Fr. Nicolas Ramirez of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston and seminarian Jacob Ramirez, has agreed to join me in this effort to promote Ministerios de Vocaciones to Latino Catholics. She has been a part of the Vocation Task Force in a large parish in Houston for years and has given workshops for IBM before teaching and becoming a principal of an elementary school. Leticia is currently an adjunct professor at the University of Houston.
Leticia and I had an instant connection due to our love of vocations! After a few years, I asked her to help mold my book Hundredfold so that it would speak to the Hispanic population! I did not want a straight translation, but a new edition that would resonate with the people from that culture. During that process, the Holy Spirit prompted me to ask her if she would ever consider holding these workshops, like I was doing, for the Hispanic communities of a diocese.
Thus, the workshop for Sembrando Semillas (Sowing Seeds) was born. I am so thankful that she has joined our mission to create a culture of vocations one parish at a time.
God bless you, one and all! St. Alphonsus Liguori, pray for Leticia!