Valley reflects on the life of Bishop John Steinbock

FRESNO, Calif.

"He has been one beautiful pastor and shepard for all of us," Deacon Edward Valdez at St. Anthony of Padua said before his congregation.

News of Bishop John Steinbock's death early Sunday morning shocked the congregation at St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church.

Valdez: "What a wonderful and beautiful bishop he was. Because of him and his encouragement before I was regained a deacon he encouraged me to be a deacon."

Fresno resident Tony Farmer said: "I was just very impressed with his humility and although I did not get to know him I am very, very sad."

Several church goers knew the Bishop was sick but did not hear he passed until they arrived at mass Sunday.

Elaine Moore from Fresno said: "We always hoped for the best and I'm just glad he's in a better place now and he's not suffering anymore."

The annual Guadalupana celebration at St. Johns Cathedral in downtown Fresno continued despite the loss.

Deacon Salvador DeLatorre said: "To look from above all this great festivity for the Virgin de Guadalupe. So I know that he's very happy right now. He's very happy."

Over cast conditions were not enough to keep hundreds of people away from a chance to remember and celebrate their leader.

Amelia Kutz said: "I think that to have him to continue to do what he does and support what we do is great. We need that."

Milagros Marcias added: "Whenever anyone leaves us there is no one that can every replace that one person because they offer so much to us. Especially when it comes to our community here in Fresno."

In lieu of flowers and gifts Bishop John Steinbock asks remembrances be sent to Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Fresno, 149 N. Fulton St, Fresno, Ca 93701 Attention: Catherine Manfredo, Exe. Dir.

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