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Ixtahuacan resident, Pablo Tambriz, active in Santa Catarina Church

Pablo on left with Manuel, religious education teacher, in front of Marian Center in Ixtahuacan.


By Donna Connell and Julianne Connell Sachs | March 2021

Ixtahuacan Resident, Pablo Tambriz, Active in Santa Catarina Church

Meet Pablo Francisco Raxuleu Tambriz, lifelong resident of Santa Catarina Ixtahuacan. At 48 years old, Pablo and his wife, Juliana Perechu Xocol, have four sons and two daughters. Pablo is an active member of the Santa Catarina Church in Ixtahuacan and is available to the pastor to help out at the church when needed. Pablo said his favorite part of the week is leading the class that prepares children for First Communion. He is one of the leaders for the children’s religious education program and he is also a musician for Mass.

Monday through Saturday, Pablo wakes at 5 a.m. to weave and sew products to sell until he begins work in the fields at 8 a.m. He tends the crops until 3 or 4 p.m., depending on whether he is teaching First Communion classes, which run from 3:30 to 5 p,m. Upon returning home, Pablo continues sewing work until 9 or 10 p,m. On Sundays, he attends Mass and teaches religious education.

When Pablo was 11 years old, he received First Communion on a day he will never forget. He described a vision of the Blessed Mother, “a lady, resplendent like the sun, with a cape full of stars,” that motivated him to pray the rosary. After that, he began meeting with other children in his neighborhood to pray the rosary regularly.

Pablo described his unwavering faith in God, even when food is scarce or a cure for his father unaffordable. Pablo attended free public primary school, but was not able to continue his education because his father died when he was 13 and he needed to help his mother.

Pablo was active in the church during his youth, dedicating one year of service to the church when he was 14. He credits Fr. Gonzalo, Fr. David Baronti, Fr. Kevin Codd, Sister Immaculata Burke, Sister Marie Tolle, and Dave Dodroe (longtime volunteer in Guatemala), for their encouragement and guidance.

Pablo said he hopes to expand his religious education work by visiting poor and orphaned children in their homes and guiding them ”in the good path that leads to God.” He expressed gratitude for the diocese’s support, and prays, “May our Mother Mary cover you with her mantle and accompany you in your daily work. May God bless you.”

Ixtahuacan resident, Pablo Tambriz, active in Santa Catarina Church2

Pablo handing out rosaries and brochures, brought by Spokane visitors for religious education children.

Ixtahuacan resident, Pablo Tambriz, active in Santa Catarina Church3

Pablo in front of religious education building during stabilization and remodeling of the building.