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Que Pasa? : PEOPLE

March 19, 1992|ALICIA DI RADO

Msgr. Gerald R. Barnes, 46, left Southern California behind in 1968 to pursue his calling as a Roman Catholic priest. "I never thought I'd be returning there to minister," said Barnes, who is being ordained this week as auxiliary bishop to the Diocese of San Bernardino after five years as the rector of a San Antonio seminary. "My family is ecstatic," said Barnes, a Roosevelt High and Cal State L.A. graduate who has relatives in East Los Angeles. Tracing his roots to three grandparents from Sonora, he hopes to draw upon his culture to get to know Latinos in his diocese. "(Latinos have) values that must not be put aside," he said. "They should be built upon, not discarded."

* When financially troubled Montebello Unified needed a new superintendant to steer the school district away from potential bankruptcy, officials turned to Acting Supt. Darline P. Robles. She must decide how to cut $12 million from a budget already cut by 22% since last June. "We want to make sure that whatever process we follow allows people to provide input," said Robles, 42, who joined the district as a teacher in 1973. Having grown up in Montebello, Robles said she understands what its residents want for their children. Robles, who attended Cal State L.A. and Claremont College, said community support for her efforts has been overwhelming despite cuts in programs and staff. "We'll get through it," she said. "It'll be tough, but we'll get through it."

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