Monday, March 12, 2012

Letter to Bishop Lori on the March 23rd Protests

In the spirit of writing letters to influential people that this blog has taken, I have written a letter to the Most Rev. Bishop William Lori of Bridgeport, Connecticut. I ask that he, as the head of the USCCB's Committee on Religious Liberty, would assist in making a public statement from the bishops supporting the March 23rd campaign "Stand Up for Religious Freedom". As you may know from what I spoke about in my Tower article, Bishop Lori is the bishop who, over two years ago, was able to mobilize thousands of people for a protest in the streets for religious liberty. If anyone is to truly understand the magnitude of the March 23rd protests, he will be the one. Similar letters have been sent to Timothy Cardinal Dolan, Donald Cardinal Wuerl of Washington, DC, and Bishop William Murphy, bishop of my home Diocese of Rockville Centre. I encourage any of you to send similar letters to these or your own home bishops, because the shepherds of the Church should guide the flock in this matter of witness.

Dear Bishop Lori,
My name is Joseph Jablonski. I am an undergraduate at Catholic University of America, and an active member of the University community in support of the Catholic Church, blogging frequently (www.gaudiumdei.com) and writing for the CUA newspaper The Tower. As a Catholic who covers modern issues, I am thankful and proud of my bishops who have stood up for religious liberty in the past few weeks with this crisis of the HHS Mandate. In one of my articles, I took as inspiration your work in Bridgeport, when you dealt with the challenge of religious liberty by encouraging people to demonstrate in front of the Connecticut Capital building, which spoke to the whole of the Church in America.
In that spirit of public demonstration, I would like to encourage you, as head of the USCCB Committee on Religious Liberty, to express public support for the March 23rd “Stand Up For Religious Freedom” protests that are planned to be happening nationwide on that day. The website
In that spirit of public demonstration, I would like to encourage you, as head of the USCCB Committee on Religious Liberty, to express public support for the March 23rd “Stand Up For Religious Freedom” protests that are planned to be happening nationwide on that day. The website www.standupforreligiousfreedom.com explains how the movement has grown to over sixty cities and already has bishops speaking at three of those rallies. Though I am not directly associated with the rallies, I feel they are integral in our effort for religious liberty, since they will unite Catholics and express publicly our joy and support for the freedom to spread Christ’s message. You most definitely encountered these effects when you spoke at your rally in Bridgeport. However, these rallies are not widely known, and support for them is moving slowly.Thus I was hoping that the USCCB would, through an announcement on your website, come out in support of the rallies. This would give the movement the national momentum and media attention it needs to truly make an impact on repealing the HHS Mandate. I look constantly to your inspiration when I consider the protests that will occur later this month. I know that the bishops are behind our work, whether it is writing to our representatives or speaking out on our campuses or through blogs and newspapers. However, I pray that in this instance you could be shepherds for the flock of the Church, and guide those that do not know of this movement to be out in the streets, vocally and joyfully witnessing to Christ’s message in the Gospel.

Yours in Christ,

Joseph M. Jablonski
Copyright (c) 2012 Joseph Jablonski

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