SALT LAKE CITY — During an award ceremony Aug. 16, Bishop Oscar A. Solis received a Tonahuac Award on behalf of Utah’s multi-cultural community.
The Tonahuac award recognizes people whose service and leadership has helped the Hispanic community in Utah.
The award was presented by Jose V. Borjon, Mexican Consul of Utah. Other recipients were the Utah First Lady Jeanette Herbert and Daniel Temkin, president and CEO of Temkin International.
After giving a brief description of Bishop Solis’ journey as a priest and as the first Filipino bishop in the United States, Borjon introduced Bishop Solis as “a terrific blessing to Utah’s 300,000 Catholics and, frankly, for all of us in the state of Utah. … He has encouraged all of us to live our religion and to help those in need.”
Borjon, who began as consul last year, quoted Bishop Solis as saying his first impression was that there is a beautiful community of faith in Utah, “not just Catholics, but together we can lead the way in solving the problems of the world.”
The bishop has said he plans to continue his faith-building efforts by reaching out to other religious people to discover ways to connect with the young; he will continue speaking on immigration reform and respect for life issues, as well as working to bring people together in a continued effort to solve the issues of the poor, Borjon said. For all of these reasons and many more, the Federation of United Mexicans in Utah presented Bishops Solis with the Tonahuac Award, he said.
Accepting the award, Bishop Solis said it was his responsibility as God’s servant to serve and love everyone, especially those most in need. “Brothers and sisters, this country is a country of immigrants, some more rich and privileged, and others not, … but in the eyes of God we are all a family, … we are responsible for one another,” Bishop Solis said. “We are here to work and build a better community. … We are called to serve.”
Bishop Solis concluded by thanking Salvador Lazalde, the United Mexican Federation of Utah president, for all their work,; he also thanked Governor Gary Herbert “for his support in my ministry.”