Pastoral Letter Against Racism
During the November USCCB meeting, the U.S. Bishops adopted, nearly unanimously, their new pastoral letter Open Wide Our Hearts. The Bishops call for “a genuine conversion of heart, a conversion that will compel change, and the reform of our institutions and society.” They declare that “the injustice and harm racism causes are an attack on human life.” The Bishops issue an urgent call of love that “compels each one of us to resist racism courageously [and] … change policies and structures that allow racism to persist.” To access the full text of the letter and the many related resources for schools and parishes, click here [votervoice.net].
Public Charge Rule Impacts Legal Migrants- Comment due by Monday The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has proposed a regulatory change that would negatively impact legal immigrants. The proposal would drastically revise the existing standards for making a “public charge” determination, one of the ways that the federal government determines whether to admit an individual into the U.S. or allow a lawful immigrant in the U.S. to become a permanent resident. Bishop Eusebio Elizondo, Auxiliary Bishop of Seattle, pointed out that, “The proposed rule could prevent families right here in Washington from receiving vital nutrition, health, and housing assistance.” Here is how you can respond:
- Learn – Educate yourself and others by reading this helpful background [votervoice.net] information prepared by USCCB and Catholic Charities USA.
- Submit Comments – This is an important way to exercise good citizenship. You can submit comments here [votervoice.net]. The deadline for submitting comments is 11:59 pm on Monday, December 10, 2018. Please submit your own unique comment to DHS, asking that the federal government withdraw this deeply concerning rule and maintain its existing public charge analysis.
- Get Involved – Visit WACatholics.org\immigration-support [wacatholics.org] to learn more ways you can support our brothers and sisters facing immigration-related challenges.
Catholic Advocacy Day 2019 Mark your calendars – Thursday, February 7 is the date for you to join other Catholics in lobbying our legislators in Olympia on important legislation. Following a legislative briefing, Archbishop Sartain will celebrate Mass before participants head to the Capitol to meet with legislators. You can sign up for this free event by clicking here [votervoice.net].
USCCB Applauds Expanded Exemptions to HHS Mandate Last month, the federal government finalized new regulations providing expanded religious and moral exemptions from the mandate requiring health insurance coverage of sterilization, contraception, and drugs and devices that may cause abortions. Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo, Archbishop of Galveston-Houston and President of the USCCB, and Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, Chairman of the USCCB’s Committee for Religious Liberty, applauded the new rules that “allow people like the Little Sisters of the Poor, faith-based schools, and others to live out their faith in daily life”. To read the entire USCCB statement, click here [votervoice.net].
Farm Bill Update Last week, House and Senate leaders announced that they had reached a bipartisan agreement on the reauthorization of the Farm Bill. Details have not been released to the public and still require the House and Senate voting on the final bill and President Trump’s signature before it can be enacted. It is anticipated that the Farm Bill conference report will be released early next week.
Upcoming Dates – MARK YOUR CALENDARS!
Mass/Walk for Life Northwest [votervoice.net], Spokane- January 12, 2019
Mass for Life [votervoice.net], Lacey and Olympia – January 22, 2019
March for Life, Olympia – January 22, 2019
Catholic Advocacy Day [votervoice.net] – Thursday, February 7, 2019
Cornerstone Catholic Conference – October 18-19, 2019