Jesus Abrego: 2012 Lumen Christi Award Finalist

Abrego

“Jesus is a servant leader, a true witness of Jesus Christ, a man who loves our Church and loves people, and who has dedicated his life towards ministry and empowerment of others.”

“As Director of Criminal Justice for the Beaumont Diocese I have worked with Jesus and he is much deserving of this award.”

Jesus Abrego, Diocese of Beaumont, TX

In 2009, Jesus Abrego founded the inaugural Hispanic Family Conference in the Diocese of Beaumont. The event directly addressed the challenges faced by Hispanic Catholic families. Just two years later, conference attendance was so high that the diocese had to rent five separate venues to accommodate the throngs of people. The event’s success is a powerful testament to the strength of Abrego’s ministry. Through his innovative programs, he mentors Hispanics of all ages, forming essential leaders for both the parish and diocesan level.

Abrego’s ministry began over ten years ago, before he assumed his current position as Director of Hispanic Ministry. He founded a Hispanic leadership-training program for youth and young adults that has since grown into a three-step certification process, mobilizing young people on a quest to spread God’s love. He uses his energetic spirit and upbeat personality to inspire the youth, coordinating monthly speakers to communicate the importance of education and healthy families.

With only seven Spanish-speaking priests in the diocese, communication is a vital part of Abrego’s ministry. He is the translator for all verbal, electronic and printed communications for the Diocese of Beaumont. By establishing adult leadership retreats, he has also created small communities of Hispanic Catholics that gather to share their struggles and assist one another in spiritual development. These core groups then organize the next round of retreats, so that others, too, can experience this sense of community.

The Hispanic population is poised to become the future majority of the Catholic Church. Through his expansive ministry, Abrego is fostering these new leaders who will guide the faith into a vibrant tomorrow.