Please Welcome Alex Sánchez Rivera Youth Director
Hello families of Sacred Heart Parish!
My name is Alexander Sanchez Rivera and it is with such great joy that I join this parish community as your new youth minister. Some of you may recognize me from my time as a seminarian for our Diocese of St. Augustine. I am arriving to you all after having worked for the past two years as a Catholic school religion teacher and young adult minister for the Archdiocese of Miami. These past two years in South Florida have been incredible, but I could feel the Lord calling me to return back to the place where I found my faith and to serve the community that built me up.
I was born in Puerto Rico and raised throughout the Northeast, but my parents moved to Orange Park in 2005 where I finished public middle school and high school. It was here as my school bus passed St. Catherine parish everyday to school that I could feel Jesus in the Eucharist calling me to return to him. It was in my youth that the Lord revealed his intense love for me, so throughout my entire ministry I have felt a special connection to the youth. As I arrive at Sacred Heart Parish, I am reminded of an experience at an old Jesuit retreat center on the Bay of Miami with a Franciscan priest from NY. I was serving the holy hour which ended the retreat and the priest shared this message that has remained in my heart in all I do. He proposed to us to ponder on how the Lord had brought us all that day together as strangers and in God’s infinite wisdom and mercy has made us friends with Him and each other. I arrive to some of you as a familiar face and others as a stranger, but in my ministry to the youth of our parish I hope to establish a friendship like that of Jesus’. I am so excited to see all the miracles the Lord has in store for us through the simplicity of the gift of friendship.
See you at Church!