Armando M. Cervantes, to support the V Encuentro Youth and Young Adult Leadership Initiative (VEYYALI)

Washington DC:  The USCCB Secretariat for Cultural Diversity in the Church has contracted Armando M. Cervantes, current Director of Youth & Young Adult Ministry for the Diocese of Orange, as Organizational Relations Manager of a post V Encuentro initiative. The  V Encuentro Youth and Young Adult Leadership Initiative (VEYYALI) will develop and implement comprehensive guidelines for a nationally replicable model and methodology for leadership development and formation of emerging young adult Hispanic leaders and those that serve Hispanic youth and young adults.

The process of the Fifth National Encuentro of Hispanic/Latino Ministry highlighted a major national concern for Hispanic youth and young adults and their formation as Church leaders and committed Catholics.  In response to this broad-based concern, and in continuation of the Encuentro’s objective to develop 25,000 new emerging Hispanic leaders, this initiative seeks to form Hispanic/Latino young adults and adults working with Hispanic/Latino youth and young adults through a solid certificate program and create a pathway towards degree programs.

Armando brings over two decades of parish, diocesan, regional, national and international experience and leadership. Armando graduated from UC Irvine with a B.A. in Social Sciences with an Emphasis in Public and Community Service. After receiving his M.A. in Pastoral Theology from Loyola Marymount University, Armando received his Executive MBA from Chapman University.  Armando brings years of experience networking and collaborating with national organizations such as La RED and NFCYM.

Cervantes was one of the Co-Masters of Ceremony for Region 11’s Regional Encuentro and the National Encuentro in Grapevine, TX. As the Organizational Relations Manager, Armando will partner with Miriam Bannon, Project Manager, in the development of  VEYYALI. His main focus will be to communicate with representatives from collaborating organizations about VEYYALI’s vision, process and outcomes. Armando will also play a prominent role in coordinating and facilitating the ongoing dialogue required to fashion a leadership development and ministerial formation, as a common project involving many collaborating organizations and institutions. 

Alejandro Aguilera Titus, National Coordinator of the V National Encuentro noted, 

Armando brings to VEYYALI his first-hand knowledge of the youth and young adult ministry world and its many players. His skills as facilitator and intercultural communicator are a great asset, particularly for an initiative that involves bringing together successful leaders and organizations into a new common project.


The V Encuentro Youth and Young Adult Leadership Initiative (VEYYALI) is a V Encuentro initiative that will develop a national leadership formation program for Hispanic youth and young adults leading toward ministry and service in intercultural contexts. The V National Encuentro of Hispanic/Latino Ministry is a four-year process of ecclesial reflection & action in Catholic parishes across the United States and a priority activity of the USCCB’s Strategic Plan for 2017-2020.