The U.S. Catholic bishops have developed a one-minute video to help Catholics around the country pray for the renewal of a culture of life, marriage and religious liberty in the United States.
Archbishop Charles Chaput was among all the bishops who received a letter from the chairmen of four committees of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops announcing the video and encouraging its use in every diocese.
At a meeting last November, an assembly of all the U.S. bishops approved a “pastoral strategy” calling for prayer, penance and sacrifice, such as fasting or abstaining from certain foods, by individual Catholics.
Components of the strategy include “monthly Eucharistic holy hours in cathedrals and parishes, daily rosary, special prayers of the faithful at Mass, fasting and abstinence on Fridays, and the second observance of a Fortnight for Freedom,” the letter said. “The response from the laity has been most encouraging.”
It added the Catholic Conference’s committees on pro-life activities, marriage, family life, youth and religious liberty, and their supporting staffs, developed resources to aid the effort “in building this (prayer) movement as threats to life, marriage and religious liberty continue with greater intensity.”
“Large numbers of Catholics,” the letter said, “are currently participating in the weekly prayer activities through email, texting and various social media and we hear from diocesan staff that the call to prayer is being welcomed at the parish level.”
The bishops hoped the video would reach a wider audience and cited additional resources on their website. A version of the video in Spanish is in production and its release is expected soon.
The letter was written by Cardinal Sean O’Malley (Pro-Life Activities), Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades (Committee on Laity, Marriage, Family Life and Youth), Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone (Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Liberty) and Archbishop William E. Lori (Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty).