Archbishop Chaput: Katrina shows us fragileness of human life; true meaning of Christian discipleship

.- Reflecting on the days following Hurricane Katrina, which ravaged the U.S. Gulf Coast last week, Archbishop Charles Chaput of Denver wrote Thursday that the tragic events should invite the world to see “what true Christian discipleship and real humanity mean.”

In his weekly column for the Denver Catholic Register, the Archbishop noted that while Catholics in the U.S., and in his own Archdiocese of Denver, had been exceedingly generous in assisting the “parade of human suffering from the Horn of Africa to Southeast Asia” over the past decade, with Hurricane Katrina, that giving takes on a whole new meaning.

“Until now,” he said, “doing the ‘right thing’ — the generous thing — for victims of natural disaster has usually involved foreign faces in faraway places. On Aug. 28 that changed. Now the need for our help is right here at home and overwhelmingly urgent. Nothing like the scope of the Katrina hurricane disaster has ever happened in the United States. The image of refugee Americans wandering through a devastated major metropolis like New Orleans is something utterly new.”

He said that, “Most of us — God willing — will never experience the confusion and suffering we’ve seen these days throughout the battered Gulf states. For that gift of God’s mercy, we need a serious return to humility and gratitude. Everything we have, including life itself, is fragile. It can vanish in a moment.”

“We may think we’re masters of our environment,” he said. “Events have reminded us that we’re not.”

“The very same events,” the Archbishop stressed, “invite us to show the world what Christian discipleship and real humanity mean. The people of the Gulf states are fellow Americans. Many are fellow Catholics. They need our prayers. They also desperately need our financial support.”

Dioceses all over the U.S. are taking up special collections for victims of the tragedy. Catholic Charities USA, working in conjunction with the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has said it is mobilizing one of its most massive aid efforts ever.

Added Archbishop Chaput: “Those most in need are never strangers. Catholics help the suffering because we love Jesus Christ, and we see his face in theirs. We don’t ask whether the victims are Malays or Sudanese; Christian, Hindu, Jewish or Muslim. We do the work of charity because it’s right.”

Anyone seeking to help can find more information at www.catholiccharitiesusa.org.

Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages


Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis visits poor neighborhood and meets with young people from Argentina
Pope Francis celebrates Mass at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida
Denver rally draws hundreds in support of religious freedom
Pope Francis prays over a sick man in St Peter's Square
Denver women's clinic will offer natural, Catholic care
Interview Clips: Barbara Nicolosi speaks to CNA
US Cardinals press conference at North American College
Pope Benedict to retire to monastery inside Vatican City
Pope cites waning strength as reason for resignation
Hundreds convene in Denver to urge respect for life
New Orange bishop encourages Catholic unity in diversity
Chinese pro-life activist calls for reform, international attention
At Lincoln installation, Bishop Conley says holiness is success
Mother Cabrini shrine reopens in Chicago after a decade
Ordination of 33 deacons fills St. Peter's with joy
Cardinal says "Charity is the mother of all the virtues"
Augustine Institute expands evangelization effort with new campus
Bishops recall 'Way of St. James' as chance to trust in God
Los Angeles cathedral's newest chapel houses Guadalupe relic

Liturgical Calendar

April 24, 2014

Thursday within the Octave of Easter

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Lk 24:35-48


Daily Readings

First Reading:: Acts 3:11-26
Gospel:: Lk 24:35-48

Saint of the Day

Easter Sunday »


Homily of the Day

Lk 24:35-48


Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
Text only

Follow us: