WASHINGTON—Catholic dioceses acrossthe United States are celebrating Masses, prayer services, marches and otherevents to mark the close of the Fortnight for Freedom, a two-week celebrationof religious liberty focused on how faith enriches public life. The Fortnightbegan June 21, the vigil of the feast of Saints Thomas More and John Fisher,and ends July 4, Independence Day.
On July 4, Cardinal Donald Wuerl ofWashington will celebrate the closing Mass of the Fortnight at the Basilica ofthe National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington. Other diocesesholding Fortnight Masses on July 4 include Cleveland, Ohio; La Crosse,Wisconsin; Gary, Indiana; Fort Wayne-South Bend, Indiana; Lexington, Kentucky;Kansas City, Kansas; Madison, Wisconsin; Milwaukee; Owensboro, Kentucky;Phoenix, Arizona; Pittsburgh; Duluth, Minnesota; and St. Louis. Other diocesesholding closing Fortnight Masses on dates other than July 4 include Alexandria,Louisiana (July 5); Raleigh, North Carolina (July 5); and Des Moines, Iowa(July 7).
"Participation in the secondFortnight for Freedom has been an encouraging sign that Catholics takeseriously their responsibility to participate in civic life and that we mustall witness to the positive role faith plays in our society," said ArchbishopWilliam E. Lori of Baltimore, chairman of the U.S. bishops' Ad Hoc Committee onReligious Liberty.
Many dioceses around the country areplanning or have already held religious freedom rallies, marches, and paradesto celebrate the Fortnight. Ecumenical and interfaith prayer services have beenheld in many places around the country, including Arlington, Virginia; SanAntonio, Texas; San Diego, California; and Greensburg and Scranton,Pennsylvania. On July 4, the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City will wrap up servicesoutlined in a 14-day devotional book, the Diocese of Palm Beach, Florida willcomplete its daily rosary for religious freedom, and numerous other dioceseswill observe holy hours for religious freedom and diocesan-wide bell ringing inthe final days of the Fortnight. Over 120U.S. dioceses participated in Fortnight for Freedom activities this year.
Keywords: Fortnight for Freedom, diocesan activities, Mass,holy hour, rosary, Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Basilica of the National Shrine ofthe Immaculate Conception
# # # # #MEDIA CONTACT ONLY:Sr. Mary Ann WalshO: 202-541-3200M: 301-325-7935Email
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