Our Sister Parish
St. Anthony of Padua
Río Dulce, Guatemala
- Pastor: Fr. Javier Hernandez
- Parishioners: 10,000
- Communities: Total of 89
- People cluster into communities of 10-20 families.
- Daily living: Only 20 communities have electricity and safe water to drink.
- Dependent on small gardens. Farming is the only occupation.
- No cars, only 50% of the area is accessible with a 4WD vehicle.
- Geography: Contains the largest river of Guatemala. Home of lakes, plains, and hot weather. 2 ports are located here. Considered a very poor area of Guatemala.
Our Sister Parish St Anthony is located near Rio Dolce in the Izabal region of Guatemala. The parish covers the entire Izabal region and extends into parts of the Peten region to the north. The parish serves 84 churches in as many communities with only two priests. Two ethnic cultures are served, Maya Indians and the locals of mostly mixed Spanish decent. The Mayan Indians speak a non-written language Q’eqchi. There are some 86 different dialects across the country. The Church is not only the center for Religious life but also serves and supports the community in all aspects and needs that would typically be governmental roles. Legal, Educational, Social Services, Health, community development, municipal water supply, food distribution are just a view examples of the types of services that the Church supplies.