Hopefully, you all joined us for our livestreamed Mass yesterday! In his homily Father Jim spoke of racism, peace, and justice. We thought you would like to read the text of his homily which is below. You may watch a video of the Mass by clicking here. I encourage you to watch and participate in the entire Mass - from the readings to the homily to the music. All of it can help us to focus on our duty as Christian Catholics during this difficult time. Please click here to read the Open Wide Our Hearts: The Enduring Call to Love - the US Bishop's Pastoral Letter against racism. In the next few days we will notify you of the time and date when we can gather virtually in prayer for an end to racism. After that, a group study on the Bishop's Pastoral Letter will be announced.
God bless you all,
Anne Stephens, Communications Director
In light of what happened this last weekend I, and all Catholic priests in the Archdiocese, were asked to speak about racism, peace, and justice by our archbishop.
I tell you, this is a sad birthday for the Church and us. We thought we were doing well with this issue of racism. We are not. Despite the many pieces of federal, state, and local laws little has changed.
It is up to us - the powerful, economic, political, social, influential - to change. Racism is like a smoldering volcano. Why are we surprised when it explodes when we have done nothing? It is because of our attitudes. We have not changed. There is racism all through our country – north, south, east, and west. Different in the way they do racism; but it is racism. When will we stop taking advantage of the vulnerable economically – pay minimum wage or less because we can? When will we give everyone the right to be heard?
This will not change until we change our attitudes and become inclusive of all. Peace and justice cannot happen without equity. I applaud the Mayor of Atlanta stating, “We can do better than this.” And indeed we can. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr is crying to see his peaceful march turned into violence. So is Mahatma Gandhi.
I ask you to read the Catholic Bishop’s statement on racism. It is on their website the usccb.org. We at OLA will be setting up a dialogue on racism. Yes, education is essential but it must be turned into action for the good of all. Violence can never be condoned. It merely continues the problem. I pray we give each other the best birthday gift by embracing our call as Christian Catholics to lead by example the call to be inclusive, change our attitudes and live – and live – in peace and justice.
- Father Jim Duffy, SM