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April 20, 2004
The Honorable Jim Kolbe
House Foreign Operations Subcommittee
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515
Dear Representative Kolbe:
On behalf of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) and Catholic Relief Services (CRS), the bishops' relief and development agency, we write regarding Fiscal Year 2005 Foreign Operations Appropriations. We ask your support for the following requests, which reflect the tremendous needs of the millions of people in Africa and elsewhere whose lives and dignity are threatened daily by poverty and disease:
Enclosed, for your reference, please find a more detailed discussion of the above requests, which summarizes the written testimony we are submitting to the House and Senate Foreign Operations Subcommittees.
We recognize that Congress is making budgetary decisions in a difficult fiscal environment this year. However, responding to the needs of our poorest brothers and sisters is not an option, but our moral responsibility. Investing in human development is also a wise path, as fostering hope and prosperity in the poorest countries will help to ensure greater international security and peace.
We thank you for your continued leadership in the fight against poverty and injustice, and look forward to working with you on these important matters over the coming months.
Most Reverend John H. Ricard
Bishop of Pensacola-Tallahassee
Chairman, International Policy Committee
Catholic Relief Services
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