He has been a good support with our students at the CMP, where he came to celebrate the Eucharist, to give Bible classes to the older students, to be part of celebrations on special days and to bring the monthly birthday cake!
Our last Eucharist and celebration with him at the CMP took place on June 25. The students expressed in different ways their gratitude to Fr. Craig and remembered, through a Presentation, some of the memorable moments lived with him throughout the years.
Saturday, July 14th, was the Installation of the new pastor by Cardinal Oscar Andrés Rodriguez. It was also a thanksgiving Mass not only for the 12 years of presence of the Diocese of Fall River in Guaimaca, but for the 8 years of ministry of Fr. Craig Pregana in the Parish. The Church was standing room only and many were outside. There were people from the city and from the different villages of the Parish, a good representation of the City Officials, TV Channels, young and older parishioners. It was an expression of gratitude and love, as well as a sign of the growth of the community with a large presence of the youth.
The Cardinal’s homily, based on the readings of the day, which spoke of being sent and of caring for the community, emphasized both the gift of Fr. Craig to the Parish he had ministered for eight years, and also the fact that he was giving the parish from the best of the Archdiocese in the person of Fr. Jonathan Funes, a young priest with many talents. It was a day filled with emotions and gratitude as well as expectations.
Fr. Craig’s departure was on Monday, July 16th. Early that morning many of us gathered outside the rectory to give him a “serenata”. We sang songs we know he likes and others in relation to Honduras, the land and the people he now loves deeply.
Later on, Fr. Jonathan came with other seminarians for his pastoral experience the year previous to his ordination as a deacon. He came also a couple of times to offer concerts in the Parish. As a young priest, he can offer good formation to our young people.