Peace & Justice

This is the blog of the Commission on Peace and Justice for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany, New York.

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Catholic Action Network

As the election draws closer, it is important to remember that Catholic advocacy includes more than voting. It includes communicating the Catholic position on social issues with our elected officials.

Toward that end, the New York State Catholic Conference offers the Catholic Action Network (CAN), which gives us all a larger voice in the halls of government. Through e-mail and social media alerts, CAN reaches tens of thousands of Catholics like you to provide educational updates on the important issues being debated and to provide you with the tools to simplify the process of contacting your elected officials.

You can join learn more here.

Thursday, October 08, 2020

An election novena

From the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops:

Bearing in mind our nation’s challenges and the need for wise, moral, civic leadership, the USCCB is offering an electronic Election Novena to help Catholics prepare for the upcoming election. 
For nine consecutive days, Monday, October 26 through Tuesday, November 3, participants will be encouraged to pray one Our FatherHail Mary, and Glory Be for the day’s intention.  A closing prayer for elected leaders will be offered on day 10, Wednesday, November 4.
More details are available here.

Wednesday, October 07, 2020

Mass food distribution this Friday

 On Friday October 9, Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Albany and the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York are teaming up with the Metropolitan New Testament Mission Baptist Church to address food insecurity with a mass food distribution in Albany, NY.

The food distribution, or “drive-thru pantry” is a part of Catholic Charities’ mobile outreach initiative, CC MOVE, and is an effort to provide supplemental and emergency food in areas with limited access to services at time when many are struggling. Food items provided by the Regional Food Bank will be pre-packaged by volunteers from partnering organizations and distribution will begin at 9:30 AM. The distribution is open to the public and no pre-registration is required.
Food is distributed on a first-come, first-served basis, and the distribution will last until supplies are gone.
In order to maintain appropriate safety and social distancing, there will be two distribution lines: a drive-through line, and a walk-in line.

Tuesday, October 06, 2020

Fratelli tutti

 On Saturday, Pope Francis issued a new encyclical, Fratelli tutti, inspired, in his words, “particularly by Saint Francis of Assisi, but also by others of our brothers and sisters who are not Catholics: Martin Luther King, Desmond Tutu, Mahatma Gandhi and many more.”

 In doing so, he followed up on his previous encyclical, “Laudato si’.” According to Vatican News, in that earlier encyclical, the Pope “clearly delineated the connections that exist between the environmental crisis, the social crisis, war, migration and poverty. He indicated the goal to reach: a more just economic and social system, one that would respect creation, that would put the human person at the center as the guardian of mother earth rather than money, elevated as an absolute god.

With the new encyclical, Vatican News continued, the Pope “shows the concrete way to reach that goal: recognizing ourselves as brothers and sisters because we are children, one another’s keepers, everyone in the same boat, as this pandemic has made even more evident.” 

Archbishop José H. Gomez of Los Angeles, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, issued a statement welcoming Pope Francis’ new encyclical. He said,

 “God’s plan for humanity, the Pope reminds us, has implications for every aspect of our lives — from how we treat one another in our personal relationships, to how we organize and operate our societies and economies.

 “In analyzing conditions in the world today, the Holy Father provides us with a powerful and urgent vision for the moral renewal of politics and political and economic institutions from the local level to the global level, calling us to build a common future that truly serves the good of the human person.
“For the Church, the Pope is challenging us to overcome the individualism in our culture and to serve our neighbors in love, seeing Jesus Christ in every person, and seeking a society of justice and mercy, compassion and mutual concern."

Vatican News provides a long summary of the encyclical here. A shorter version is available here.

Thursday, October 01, 2020

Webinar series regarding immigration

The US Conference of Catholic Bishops is marking the 15th anniversary of its Justice for Immigrants (JFI) campaign with a webinar series that will focus on key areas of migration policy for the purpose of educating Catholics and others of goodwill on some of the key moral and political issues in this arena.  

Each Wednesday at 2:00 p.m. until November 12, a webinar will focus on a distinct issue in the migration field.  These webinars will explore some of the current hopes and challenges in JFI’s efforts to influence policy with the light of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. According to JFI, “We will discuss ways in which we can move forward together as a Church to ensure that migration policies more adequately reflect Catholic social teaching. We will examine how the upcoming election might affect our work as a people seeking to uphold migrant dignity.” 

You can register for the webinars at