The Vatican II Awards were established in 1991 to honor men, women and young adults who exemplify the Catholic Church’s vision set forth in the Second Vatican Council. These individuals have been selected by Archbishop Jerome E. Listecki to be recognized for their service to the Body of Christ in southeastern Wisconsin. While an awards ceremony is typically held annually in October, this year’s festivities are postponed until such a time as it is safe to gather such a large group.
Service in Liturgy — Pedro Delgado Pecina
It doesn’t seem to be only coincidence that the same year Pedro Delgado Pecina was confirmed in the Catholic Church, he began singing in a liturgical choir.
For Delgado Pecina, who was born and lived in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico until 2014, music has always been so much more than a hobby — it has been his ministry.
“That’s my calling,” said Delgado Pecina. “That’s what the Lord is calling me to do.”
His roots in church music actually go back to when he was 13 years old and singing in a group that performed for charismatic prayer services. Though he would later have the opportunity to pursue music professionally, Delgado Pecina opted to keep that part of his life set aside for God.
“From a young age, I understood that I had nothing to do with it,” he said of his musical gift. “It came from the Lord, and I should give it to the Lord.”
His involvement in liturgical music has been a constant throughout Delgado Pecina’s life — he has always been involved in a church choir, serving the congregation as a cantor or writing his own music. But in addition to that creative spirit, he has a scientific and analytical side. Instead of studying at a conservatory, he opted to become an accountant, earning his bachelor’s degree in accounting at the Instituto Tecnológico de Ciudad Juarez in 1994.
He and his wife of 23 years, Gabriela, moved to Wisconsin in 2014 with their three sons after Delgado Pecina was transferred here for work. Settling in Brookfield, the family was on the lookout for a Spanish-language Mass and found St. Francis of Assisi in Milwaukee — known for its music ministry. “I talked to the pastor, and the next Sunday I was up there playing music with them,” he said. The family also gravitated to St. Joseph in Waukesha for weekly adoration, and Delgado Pecina soon became involved in the music program there, as well.
When Fr. Javier Bustos was being transferred from St. Joseph in Waukesha to begin a Hispanic ministry at Our Lady Queen of Peace in Milwaukee, he invited Delgado Pecina to join him to help start the Hispanic choir program.
Staff and parishioners say that the blending of the English-speaking and Spanish-speaking communities at Our Lady Queen of Peace has been a huge success — and that Delgado Pecina’s musical expertise, rooted in his profound faith, has been a big part of what allows that harmony to flourish. The Anglo and Hispanic choirs not only co-sponsor a booth at the parish festival, they sing together for bilingual Masses.
Now an aspirant for the permanent diaconate formation program, Delgado Pecina has moved on from his position as coordinator for the Hispanic choir at Our Lady Queen of Peace. “Part of discerning this vocation is to let go and start preparing for whatever the Lord wants me to do now,” he said. “It’s exciting to see what the Lord has in store for me and where he needs me now.”