United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) today announced the establishment of an Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism. Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, president of the USCCB, appointed Bishop George V. Murry, SJ, of Youngstown, Ohio, chairman of the committee.The
The committee will focus on addressing the sin of racism in both society and the Catholic Church and the urgent need to come together to find solutions.
"Recent events have exposed the extent to which the sin of racism continues to inflict our nation. The establishment of this new ad hoc committee will be wholly dedicated to engaging the church and our society to work together in unity to challenge the sin of racism, to listen to persons who are suffering under this sin and to come together in the love of Christ to know one another as brothers and sisters," said Cardinal DiNardo.
Bishop Murry said he looks forward to working with his fellow bishops as well as communities across the U.S. “to listen to the needs of individuals who have suffered under the sin of racism and together find solutions to this epidemic of hate that has plagued our nation for far too long.
"Through Jesus' example of love and mercy, we are called to be a better people than what we have witnessed over the past weeks and months as a nation. Through listening, prayer and meaningful collaboration, I'm hopeful we can find lasting solutions and common ground where racism will no longer find a place in our hearts or in our society."
The membership of the committee will be finalized in the coming days and its mandate will be confirmed at the first meeting, expected very shortly.
Almost 40 years ago, U.S. bishops wrote a pastoral letter on racism. Among the many things they discussed was the fact that "racism is a sin: a sin that divides the human family, blots out the image of God among specific members of that family, and violates the fundamental human dignity of those called to be children of the same Father." [Source: USCCB]