Home/Stay Informed/All Diocesan Articles

All Diocesan Articles

 

 

U.S. Bishops Approved “Open Wide Our Hearts:

Posted on November 14, 2018 in: News

The Enduring Call to Love, A Pastoral Letter Against Racism"

November 14, 2018

BALTIMORE— The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) approved today, during its November General Assembly, the formal statement, “Open Wide Our Hearts: The Enduring Call to Love, A Pastoral Letter Against Racism." The full body of bishops approved it by a two-thirds majority vote of 241 to 3 with 1 abstention.

The USCCB Cultural Diversity in the Church Committee, chaired by Archbishop Gustavo Garcia-Siller, MSpS, of San Antonio, Texas, spearheaded the letter’s drafting and guided it through the voting process. Bishop Shelton J. Fabre, of Houma-Thibodaux, Chairman of U.S. Bishops’ Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism and Chair of the Sub-committee on African American Affairs within the Cultural Diversity Committee, issued the following statement:

“The entire body of bishops felt the need to address the topic of racism, once again, after witnessing the deterioration of the public discourse, and episodes of violence and animosity with racial and xenophobic overtones, that have re-emerged in American society in the last few years. Pastoral letters from the full body of bishops are rare, few and far between. But at key moments in history the bishops have come together for important pronouncements, paying attention to a particular issue and with the intention of offering a Christian response, full of hope, to the problems of our time. This is such a time.”

Initiated by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops in August 2017, the Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism was created to address the evil of racism in our society and Church, to address the urgent need to come together as a society to find solutions, and to support the implementation of the bishops’ pastoral letter on racism.

“Open Wide Our Hearts: The Enduring Call to Love,” is a Pastoral Letter from the full body of bishops to the lay faithful and all people of goodwill addressing the evil of racism.

The pastoral letter asks us to recall that we are all brothers and sisters, all equally made in the image of God. Because we all bear the image of God, racism is above all a moral and theological problem that manifests institutionally and systematically. Only a deep individual conversion of heart, which then multiplies, will compel change and reform in our institutions and society. It is imperative to confront racism’s root causes and the injustice it produces. The love of God binds us together. This same love should overflow into our relationships with all people. The conversions needed to overcome racism require a deep encounter with the living God in the person of Christ who can heal all division.

"Open Wide Our Hearts: The Enduring Call to Love," is not the first time the U.S. Bishops have spoken as a collectively on race issues in the United States, but it is the first time in almost 40 years.

In 1979, they approved "Brothers and Sisters to Us: A Pastoral Letter on Racism in Our Day." Among the many things, they discussed was the fact that "Racism is a sin: a sin that divides the human family, blots out the image of God among specific members of that family, and violates the fundamental human dignity of those called to be children of the same Father." The newly approved “Open Wide Our Hearts” continues the message that “Brothers and Sisters to Us” sought to convey.

The full text, as well as many accompanying pastoral resources, will be posted at http://www.usccb.org/racism. Resources will include a bulletin insert, homily help, prayer materials, background information on systemic racism, and activities for primary, secondary, and higher education classroom settings.

Bookmark and Share  

Most Viewed Articles of the Last 30 Days

Clergy Appointments

Posted on September 27, 2021 in: News

1016

Clergy Appointments
The Most Reverend Michael R. Cote, D. D., Bishop of Norwich, has made the following clergy and diocesan appointments in the Diocese of Norwich   CLERGY APPOINTMENTS Reverend Francis Gilbert, from Parochial Vicar, The St. John Paul II Parish-Moodus and East Hampton, to Parochial Vicar, Divine Mercy Parish-Uncasville, Oakdale, and Quaker Hill. Effective: September 27, 2021. Rev. Msgr. Leszek T. Janik, from Vicar General for the Diocese of Norwich and Pastor, Sacred Heart Church, Norwichtown, to Vicar General for the Diocese of Norwich, Pastor, Sacred Hea...

Read More

Willimantic Shelter in Need of Executive Director

Posted on September 30, 2021 in: News

642

Willimantic Shelter in Need of Executive Director
The Sisters of Charity of Our Lady, Mother of the Church seek a full-time Executive Director for Holy Family Home and Shelter in Willimantic CT, Sponsored by the Sisters of Charity, this 26-bed not-for-profit facility is funded by HUD, FEMA, and other grantors. "The successful applicant will be a powerful voice for the homeless, committed to faithful stewardship while developing community among a diverse population", Mother Marie Julie, SCMC said. "They must possess skills necessary for effective leadership and government grant writing."&...

Read More

Couples Attend Special Mass to Celebrate the Enduring Sacrament of Marriage
Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles Robert Barron once said that, “in marriage we do not only administer the sacrament to each other, but we also become a sacrament.”  Loving husbands and wives married for 25, 50 and even 65 years joined hands with their spouse and renewed their sacramental commitment to each other before the Lord at the Diocese of Norwich Silver and Golden Wedding Anniversary Mass on Sunday, October 3. One of the four longest married couples at Sunday's Mass at the Cathedral of St. Patrick, ...

Read More

O Tannenbaum - Help Us Decorate a Tree

Posted on October 15, 2021 in: News, Events

234

O Tannenbaum - Help Us Decorate a Tree
The Office of Faith Events will be donating two Christmas trees this year to the Festival of Trees at the Wadsworth Atheneum in Hartford.  We are still seeking ornaments to help complete our tree entitled “The Nativity”.  If you have a nativity-themed ornament/s you would like to donate to adorn this tree, please drop them off at or send them to The Office of Faith Events, 199 Broadway, Norwich, CT, 06360 by November 19, 2021.  Questions? Please email us at faithevents@norwichdiocese.net or give us a call at 860-848-2237 ext. 304 ...

Read More

SVdPP Ministry is Looking for a Grant Writer

Posted on October 20, 2021 in: News

188

SVdPP Ministry is Looking for a Grant Writer
Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.  1Peter 4:10 Do you possess skills that can help those in need?  St. Vincent de Paul Place Norwich has an immediate opening for a part-time Grant Writer. This paid position is 10-18 hours per week. Responsibilities include: grant writing and reporting, assisting the Executive Director in creating and executing fundraising plans, development and design of communications and marketing materials. Prior...

Read More

Our Advertisers Support Our Ministries

Please Support Our Advertisers

Annual Catholic Appeal

 
Signup for Weekly Newsletter


    Recently Added Galleries
    Click to view album: Palm Sunday
    Click to view album: Blessing of the Fleet
    Click to view album: Mass of Ordination for Father Michael Bovino
    Click to view album: Rite of Election 2020
    Latest Articles
    St. Michael School is Vibrant Part of Community
    Sacraments 101: Elements of Marriage - 'Free, Total, Faithful, Fruitful'
    SVdPP Ministry is Looking for a Grant Writer
    CST Principles Address Needs of the Poor and Migrants
    Catholic Charities Diocese of Norwich: Key Dates and Milestones of the 1970s and 1980s
    Vigil Mass Kicks Off 40 Days for Life Campaign
    Cyclists Complete 5-Day, 337-mile Virtual Trip Across Haiti
    O Tannenbaum - Help Us Decorate a Tree

    Roman Catholic Diocese of Norwich
    201 Broadway
    Norwich, CT 06360-4328
    Phone: 860-887-9294