CNA Staff, Jul 7, 2020 / 12:12 pm
The bishops of Mississippi's two Catholic dioceses called on their priests to preach about racism and highlighted the Church's anti-racism teachings in a letter to the state's Catholics on July 4.
Bishop Louis Kihnemann of Biloxi and Bishop Joseph Kopacz of Jackson issued an unequivocal call for all Catholics to reject racism in society in their joint Independence Day letter.
"We join our voices to vehemently denounce racism, a plague among us. It is an evil and a force of destruction that eats away at the soul of our nation. Ultimately, it is a moral problem that requires a moral remedy-a transformation of the human heart-and compels us to act," said the letter.
The bishops offered a list of "practical suggestions and goals" for the two dioceses in Mississippi on how to work to end racism. These include, on the parish level, a reading of the USCCB's "Open Wide Our Hearts: The Enduring Call to Love -- A Pastoral Letter Against Racism"; homilies speaking against racism and promoting "personal responsibility to eradicate it and encourage dialog"; prayers to end racism and injustice at Mass; listening seminars for members of the parish and wider community; and invitations for chaplains and police departments "to join seminars and discussions on racism."