The Herrera Group Sponsors a Sold Out Benefit for Seminarians at El Paso's Alamo Drafthouse Cinema

April 24, 2018

The Catholic Foundation presented Risen on 3 Screens on Wednesday, April 18 at Alamo Drafthouse Cinema. It’s an epic Biblical story about the Resurrection, as told through the eyes of the non-believer, and his ultimate conversion. Special Guests Fr. Tony Celino, Fr. Mariano López, Rector of St. Charles Seminary, and Fr. Saúl Pacheco provided opening prayers and introductions to the film prior to the viewing and seminarians joined guests in each theater to introduce themselves. Each attendee received a complimentary raffle ticket and a chance to win prizes from Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, Carlos & Mickey's, Chick-fil-A, and Starbucks, before the movie started. Thank you to The Herrera Group for serving as The Oscar Sponsor and to our Independent Filmmaker Sponsor, Travel With Kerry. 100% of the proceeds benefit the Seminarian Education Endowment Fund.

The evening was underwritten by Nora and Ernie Herrera with The Herrera Group, a wealth management firm. Nora and Ernie are graduates of Loretto Academy and Cathedral High School. They met in college—Nora had been admitted to Stanford and Ernie to Caltech—but both remained at the University of Texas at El Paso where their paths would cross. Ernie received a degree in Business Administration, after changing his degree from Engineering, and Nora double majored in Marketing and Finance. Nora was quoted in the 2014 edition of The City Magazine as saying, “My grandmother was very wise. Right before she passed away she took me aside and said, ‘This guy is your gift from God—you guys are meant to be together. I want to give you my blessing but I ask one thing of you, don’t get married until after you graduate from college.’” Nora and Ernie dated for four years before getting married in 1998.

Nora and Ernie have four children who attend Cathedral High School and Loretto Academy. They are both involved in many community efforts and organizations locally, and travel the country and the world. They love being in El Paso because their children and their family is their priority and here, they “can be parents first.” In a video created by Diocesan photographer and videographer, Joe Najera, and shown before the movie started, Ernie said, “We both agreed, without ever having that conversation, that we have an innate need to give back because we realize it’s not ours to keep. It’s not a mistake that God has been at the center of our lives and we give back as much as we can. There have been times when we don’t know where it’s going to come from but He provides it and He provides the ability to be able to do it.”

The Seminarian Education Endowment Fund is the primary focus of the Foundation. Inviting more men to discern their priestly vocation is a top priority of the Diocese. The Seminarian Education Endowment Fund was created to ensure continual resources for the recruitment and training of seminarians to serve as the future leadership of our diocese. Recruiting and educating seminarians is a significant and critical investment. The responsibility of providing priests for the Diocese of El Paso, both spiritually and financially, belongs to all of us.  

We have 27 seminarians in formation, a 160% increase from 2008, and more seminarians beginning formation in the fall. This is an exciting time! The fund value is $2 million and our short-term goal is to get that to $5 million to generate a $200,000 annual distribution to educate the future leadership of the Diocese of El Paso!

Mark your calendars for two ordinations to the Sacred Order of the Diaconate on May 25, 2018 at 6:30pm, and two ordinations to the Priesthood on June 28, 2018 at 6:30pm. The ordination Masses will be held at St. Patrick Cathedral. The Rite of Ordination and the Ordination Mass comprise one of the most beautiful, solemn, and joyful liturgies celebrated in the Catholic Church. When men are ordained for the Diocese of El Paso, they will serve the Diocese of El Paso. These men have made a lifelong commitment to our diocese, we now ask you to make a commitment to their formation. Give a gift to the Seminarian Education Endowment Fund

To learn more about the Seminarian Education Endowment Fund and related events, and to contribute, visit or contact Major Gifts Officer Sofía Larkin at the Catholic Foundation at 915.872.8412.

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