Asian and Pacific Island Catholics National Encounter, July 15-17, 2024

Join us in Indianapolis, IN. Encounter our Lord in the Eucharist and with one another. Check out the FLYERREGISTER today!

The Subcommittee Mandate

The Subcommittee on Asian and Pacific Island Affairs is under the direction of and assists the Committee on Cultural Diversity within the Church by working directly with the standing committee and collaboratively with other USCCB committees to affirm the gifts and contributions of Asian and Pacific Island Catholics and to provide more opportunities for Asian and Pacific Island Catholics to engage in the life of the Church and help shape its evangelizing mission. This mandate includes the following areas of responsibility: The subcommittee is directly responsible for outreach to the Asian and Pacific Island Catholic communities and to work closely with the Subcommittee on Pastoral Care of Migrants, Refugees and Travelers.

We, the Catholic bishops of the United States, offer this pastoral response to assist diocesan and parish leaders and all the faithful in welcoming and integrating our Asian and Pacific Island brothers and sisters as they strive to live a faith-filled life in the Catholic Church . . . Today, the Asian and Pacific Island population in the United States is the fastest-growing minority population. Nevertheless, it tends to go unrecognized in the wider US society, and there remains a need to bring more attention and support to the Asian and Pacific Island communities.

Asian and Pacific Island Catholics in the United States embody a rich and deep history of Catholicism, a synthesis of traditional Catholic practices infused with the unique cultural characteristics particular to each of the various ethnic groups that make up those identified as Asian and Pacific Islander. Asian and Pacific Island Catholics are eager to share their experiences and gifts as well as to receive support from the wider Catholic Church in the United States.


         - Encountering Christ in Harmony: A Pastoral Response to Our Asian and Pacific Island Brothers and Sisters

Greeting From Most Rev. Larry Silva, D.D.

Dear Friends,

“See, I make all things new.”  (Revelation 21:5)

When I was in high school and college, we studied the culture and mythology of ancient Greece and Rome.  We learned about their gods and the founding stories of these cultures.  Never was it suggested that we should worship these gods, but that we should know about them because they could teach us much about ourselves as human beings and about the Graeco-Roman culture on which Western Civilization was founded.

Today we are asked to “see” that there is a new reality.  The United States of America is blessed to be a country founded not only on Graeco-Roman culture, but it is a multi-cultural land with rich diversity.  Just as we once studied only the roots of Western culture, we are now challenged to look at our culture in a new way, celebrating its roots that have come to us from Africa, Latin America, Asia and Oceania.  These lands represent many ancient and modern cultures, with their own gods, myths and histories.  We are no longer solely a Graeco-Roman culture but one that is richly complex, with many cultures interacting with each other to create something new.

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) Subcommittee on Asian and Pacific Island Affairs, which I am privileged to chair, is charged with articulating the stories and cultures of these lands, from which many of our fellow citizens trace their roots.  We have the responsibility of helping all to “see” the beauty of these cultures, so that the Lord can make something new by our appreciation of them.  But this Subcommittee works collaboratively with the Subcommittees of African American Affairs, of Hispanic/Latino Affairs, of Native American Affairs, and of Pastoral Care of Migrants, Refugees & Travelers.  This mutual enrichment is the Lord’s way of reminding us that “See, I make all things new,” so that we can all be renewed by seeing the other in that culture’s unique richness, and live together in harmony as a light to the world.

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Most Reverend Larry Silva
Bishop of Honolulu
Chairman of the USCCB Subcommittee on Asian and Pacific Island Affairs