Washington D.C., Jul 23, 2016 / 15:02 pm America/Denver (CNA).
After several shootings and increased racial tensions around the country, the head of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has called for a national day of prayer and appointed a task force devoted to peace and unity.
"I have stressed the need to look toward additional ways of nurturing an open, honest and civil dialogue on issues of race relations, restorative justice, mental health, economic opportunity, and addressing the question of pervasive gun violence," said Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville, the USCCB president.
"The Day of Prayer and special Task Force will help us advance in that direction. By stepping forward to embrace the suffering, through unified, concrete action animated by the love of Christ, we hope to nurture peace and build bridges of communication and mutual aid in our own communities."
The newest statement and task force reflect sentiments in a previous statement from Archbishop Kurtz released earlier this month, urging prayer, reflection, and dialogue following racially-related shootings and violence in Baton Rouge, Minneapolis, and Dallas.
“To all people of good will, let us beg for the strength to resist the hatred that blinds us to our common humanity. To my brothers and sisters in Christ, let us gather at the Cross of Jesus. Our Savior suffered at the hands of humanity's worst impulses, but He did not lose hope in us or in His heavenly father. Love overcomes evil,” he said in his July 8 statement.