Sunday marks Catholic Relief Services Collection

A letter to all parishioners from Bishop Pfeifer

My Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ:
   In the story of the Last Judgment, Jesus reminds us to care for those in need. If we ignore those who are hungry, thirsty, ill, without clothes, strangers, or in prison, we turn away from Christ. When we act with compassion, generosity, and commitment to justice for the “least among us,” we act as his true disciples.
  THE CATHOLIC RELIEF SERVICES COLLECTION is an important opportunity to express Christian compassion and generosity. The Collection is scheduled for March 18, 2007 in our diocese. The Collection theme, Jesus in disguise, reminds us of the presence of Christ in every one of our brothers and sisters in need. The Collection helps build the Church’s international social ministry by funding the work of five agencies:
   Catholic Relief Services, the official international relief and development agency of the Catholic community in the United States, assists people in 99 countries on the basis of need—not race, creed, or nationality. Catholic Relief Services creates opportunities for Catholics in the United States to live their faith in solidarity with poor people overseas by providing financial support and addressing the root causes of poverty.
   Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc., provides a full range of legal and support services to Catholic programs directly representing poor immigrants, and it advocates for comprehensive immigration reform. Its focus is on reunification of families and protection of those fleeing persecution or civil unrest.
   Migration and Refugee Services of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops annually resettles one quarter of the refugees admitted to the United States, serves victims of human trafficking, and provides advocacy for and pastoral care to many newcomers and persons on the move.
   Social Development and World Peace of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops advocates for poor and vulnerable people and for international peace and justice. It works to build the capacity of the Church to respond to global concerns such as religious freedom, poverty, and hunger.
   The Holy Father’s Relief Fund assists victims of natural disasters and other emergencies around the world.
   By giving to THE CATHOLIC RELIEF SERVICES COLLECTION, you are responding to Jesus in disguise. Thank you for your generosity and please give generously to this year’s Collections on March 18th. Please pray for the success of this Collection and for the millions and millions of poor who receive help from this Collection. Please visit www.usccb.org/crscollection for more information.
   God’s peace.

 Your servant in Christ and Mary,
 Bishop Michael D. Pfeifer

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