It has been seven years now since a group of junior high school students, their families, and this writer gathered on the lawn of Courthouse Park in Madera.
We had formed a circle and were listening to the voice coming from the speaker phone. The party on the other end was in El Paso, Texas, and he was giving us a blessing, for he was the Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of El Paso, Texas.
At the conclusion of the prayer and blessing, we loaded up in two vans for El Paso. We were going on the most ambitious Madera Method Wagon Train trip yet. We were going to follow a 49er’s trail. As we headed down Highway 99 with the kids, my mind went back to the first time I met the bishop over a year prior.
I never dreamed that one day he would come to the Valley as the Bishop of the Diocese of Fresno...