WASHINGTON—Bishop George V. Murry, SJ, of the Diocese ofYoungstown, Ohio, Chairman of the U.S. Bishops' Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism,called on Catholics and all people of faith to observe an annual Day of Prayerfor Peace in Our Communities on September 9, the Feast of St. Peter Claver.
"St. Peter Claver is a model for us in understanding thathard work and perseverance is required to combat the sin of racism and buildcommunity; we must begin and end this effort in prayer together, even as weseek to act in concrete ways," Bishop Murry continued. "To help dioceses, parishes and other placesof worship, communities, and families observe this National Day of Prayer, theAd Hoc Committee Against Racism and USCCB staff offer pastoral and prayerresources which can be found at www.usccb.org/racism."
The Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism was formed byCardinal Daniel DiNardo, President of the United States Conference of CatholicBishops, after the recent shocking events in Charlottesville, Virginia. Bishop Murry was appointed as the Ad Hoc Committee'sfirst chairman. The Committee will focuson addressing the sin of racism in our society, and even in our Church, as wellas the urgent need to come together to find solutions.
"Last year, Archbishop Joseph Kurtz, then-President ofthe U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, called for a day of prayer for peacein our communities at a time of intense strife over police-related shootings,"said Bishop Murry. "Archbishop Kurtz alsoformed a Task Force that, among other things, recommended that the National Dayof Prayer become an annual observance. Asthe Chairman of the newly-formed Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism, it is myhonor to continue this call for prayer, and to do so every year on this feast."
St. Peter Claver (1580-1654) was a Spanish-born Jesuitpriest who dedicated his life to ministering to people enslaved by the Africanslave trade. He worked tirelessly toimprove the lives of those he served, and heroically sought an abolition of theslave trade.
"Resources forthis day, including a prayer card, Prayers of the Faithful,bishops' statements, teaching resources, and stories of how faith communities around the countryare working for racial justice are available at www.usccb.org/racism."
Keywords:U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, USCCB, racism, St. Peter Claver, Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism, Day of Prayer for Peacein Our Communities, Bishop George Murry
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