(Editor’s Note: Following is the next installment of the Herald’s monthly series profiling a priest or deacon who is serving in our diocese. This issue, we feature Deacon Rudy Gonzales, who currently serves at St. Patrick Parish.)
Deacon Rudy Gonzales was born in San Luis, Colorado, and grew up in Pueblo. He graduated from Pueblo Central High School in 1969 and attended the University of Colorado at Boulder, where he received his bachelor’s degree in education in 1973. He then attended Adams State College in Alamosa, where he earned a Master of Arts in guidance and counseling in 1974.
In 1990, Deacon Rudy completed a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Educational Leadership.
A long-life educator and learner, Deacon Rudy spent 32 years in public education and 13 years in the private sector working with students as a teacher, counselor, and school administrator. His greatest educational reward was watching the many students that graduated from high school and the over 6,000 high-school dropouts and young adults who received their GED diplomas while he was the Director of Education for Aspen Pointe in the Pikes Peak region.
Deacon Rudy discerned for nearly 25 years before accepting the call from God to become a permanent deacon. He credits the encouragement, support and prayers of his good friends Deacons Dick Brown and Jim Bachta. He was ordained a permanent deacon for the Diocese of Colorado Springs in June 2016.
His first assignment was at St. Patrick Parish. A year later, he was assigned to Corpus Christi Parish and School. In October, he was re-assigned to St. Patrick. Working with the elderly, students, in the hospitals and funeral ministry have been the staples that Deacon Rudy holds dear to his heart. He believes that ministering to those in need is an extension of the work the Lord did in his earthly life. Deacon Rudy tries to emulate the teachings of our Lord when he said, “I have come to serve and not be served.”
When not in his role as deacon, Deacon Rudy can be found at Mass, reading the Bible, doing woodwork, listening to his favorite music, or traveling with his wife, Nora. He loves to cook, makes a great pot of green or red chili and is excellent on the barbecue grill.
Deacon Rudy and Nora are also fans of University of Colorado at Boulder’s football team and have been Buffaloes season ticket holders for nearly 50 years.
The Gonzaleses love and cherish their family and friends, particularly those at St. Patrick Church where they have been parishioners for nearly 40 years.
They are also very fond of the many wonderful friends that they have at Corpus Christi Parish and those throughout the Diocese of Colorado Springs.
(Those who feel that they might be called to a vocation as a priest or permanent deacon can contact Father Kyle Ingels at firstname.lastname@example.org or Deacon Chris Kennedy at email@example.com for more information.)