A virtual event to give Catholics a clear understanding of how issues related to the protection of the unborn, care for our world, and the dignity of migrants and refugees intersect for us as followers of Christ, will take place October 4 from 7-8 P.M. Entitled, Life in the Thought of Pope Francis, the event aims to show how Christians should look at the interconnectedness of these issues, and ways we can highlight and improve them.
The phrase “perfect storm” is defined by the Oxford Dictionary as, “a particularly bad or critical state of affairs, arising from several negative and unpredictable factors.” Unfortunately, the world has produced a “perfect storm” of social consciousness. This awareness is especially important to Catholics as we look toward the future. The pandemic has certainly changed our reality and forced us to communicate, interact and advocate for others on many different levels. We are all acutely aware of our interconnectedness in both positive and negative ways, as this forum will show.
Sister Mary Jude Lazarus, director of Hispanic Ministry for the diocese, invited directors from several diocesan ministries to plan and implement this event. The date of the virtual forum, October 4, is the culmination of a month-long celebration of Laudato Si: On care for Our Common Home -- the encyclical written by Pope Francis -- as well as the World Day of Migrants and Refugees on September 27 and 40 Days for Life, which takes place September 23 through November 1. It is also the Feast Day of St. Francis of Assisi -- Pope Francis’ namesake -- who was committed to the values and dignity of all God’s creations.
As baptized Christians, we are called to do more and be more as part of this community. We often consider ourselves knowledgeable about issues, but rarely take action to help improve specific situations. This virtual forum will impart knowledge and motivate people to take action by sharing their gifts and talents to raise awareness or make permanent societal changes.
As Pope Francis so eloquently states: “Things have a price and can be for sale, but people have a dignity that is priceless and worth far more than things.” Join us on Sunday, October 4th and listen to speakers who will cover various topics, initiate dialogue and answer questions. Their expertise will shed light on our responsibility as Christians to be part of the solution and not the problem. It is an opportunity for all of us to come together to raise our voices in solidarity for the sacredness of all life. It takes a world of differences to make a difference in our world.
For questions about the virtual event or to register, please contact the Office of Faith Events at email@example.com or call Marianne Nicholas at 860-848-2237, ext. 304.
By Andrea Hoisl, director, Office of Faith Events