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Diocese of Arlington

Bishop Burbidge’s Statement Regarding Violence in Charlottesville

Seeing the violence in Charlottesville was saddening and disheartening. The more we read about the demonstration of racism, bigotry and self-proclaimed superiority it seemed as though we were living in a different time. So much progress has been made since the Civil Rights Movement. And yet, there are some who cling to misguided and evil beliefs about what makes America unique and remarkable.

Any discussion of this sensitive topic should begin with condemning all forms of bigotry and hatred. For Christians, any form of hatred, no matter who it is against, is an offense-a sin-against the Body of Christ. Each person is created by God and bestowed with His unyielding love. Anyone who treats one of those creations with disrespect, disdain or violence, has offended not just that person, but also the creator of that individual. When we witness destructive behavior, such as racism or hatred, we might naturally respond with righteous anger, but we must not respond with our own form of hatred. Hating those who hate us offers no possibility of authentic conversion or growth the sons and daughters of God.

We should be grateful to live in a country where freedom of speech and assembly is cherished and protected in a constitution. This right protects religious expression, for example. At the same time, these rights also open the opportunity for those with evil intent and backward thinking to demonstrate and share what they believe as well. The question we must ask, especially after seeing our rights misused to the point that violence erupts leaving many injured and a young woman dead, is: what do we do now?

We must find unity as a country. Unity does not mean we all believe the same things. Likewise, the freedom to express differing views or opinions does not mean we reject our unity as God’s family. The Catholic Church is rooted in fundamental principles that make us authentically Catholic-but apart from them, there are issues that allow debate and discussion, which is normal within any family. Our country is the same in many ways. We must be united by a shared interest in freedom, liberty, and love for our neighbor. Beyond those unifying principles, there will be disagreements and differing beliefs. But our unity is in our shared values ​​and, perhaps more importantly, the respect we show to one another. Without respect for each other, even when we adamantly disagree, we will see more violence and discord in this great nation.

At this time, I call upon all Catholics in the Diocese of Arlington to turn to the patroness of our nation, Mary under the title of the Immaculate Conception, and St. Michael the Archangel, and pray for unity, respect, and peace in our Communities.

Knights of Columbus Council named after Fr. Jon O'Brien

Knights of Columbus Council

The newly formed Father Jon O’Brien Knights of Columbus Council is seeking new members. The Knights of Columbus is one of the largest fraternal charitable service organization with more than 1.9 million members in over a dozen countries. Members are Catholic men who come together through faith to support their Church and local, national and worldwide causes through charitable action.

The Saint Katharine Drexel Knights of Columbus Council meets on the third Thursday of the month at 7:00 PM at the Mission Office, 14535 John Marshall Hwy, #10 in Gainesville, VA. All Catholic males 18 and over are welcome!

Mom's playgroup - St. Katharine Drexel Mission

Families with Young Children

Do you have young children and wish to connect with other St. Katharine Drexel parents with similar aged children? Please contact the SKD Office at (703) 754-8444 or esivick@saint-stephen.org.  We are trying to coordinate a group and group leader for fun “get-togethers” in and around our community.

St. Lucy Project - Diocese of Arlington

St. Lucy Project Update

The total weight of food donations from our recent St. Lucy Project food drive was 3,127 pounds of food! Thank you so much for your contributions and dedication to the success of the St. Lucy Project.

Your generosity will provide meals for 219,000 food insecure people throughout the Arlington Diocese.

St. Katharine Drexel - Fundraising Committee

Fundraising Kickoff Meeting – January 20

As promised, the SKD Building Committee is pleased to announce that we are developing a new, fun, and innovative approach to fundraising to gathering the funds needed to build our church. Our fundraising approach relies on your support and participation.

We are having a kickoff meeting on Saturday, January 20, 2018 from 1-2:00 PM at the Mission Office at 14535 John Marshall Hwy # 210, Gainesville, VA, and we are seeking people like you who want to participate and make a difference. You’ll have more fun than you thought possible, you’ll get to meet vivacious and interesting people, plus we’ll provide food and drink. If you’d like to attend, please RSVP by January 8th by emailing Ellen at esivick@saint-stephen.org or by calling the Mission Office at 703-754-8444.