Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ:
On October 11th the Catholic Church will embark on a Year of Faith. In a fundamental way we return to the basics of our faith while we deepen our understanding and knowledge of the Catechism, the Sacraments, the Nicene Creed and the teachings of the Second Vatican Council. The richness and beauty of our Catholic faith has enlightened the world in countless ways. The words of Sacred Scripture have echoed to all the corners of the world to proclaim liberation to those in the bondage of sin.
Echoed by Saint James in the Epistle readings for the last month, we seek to live our faith through love and respect for our neighbor. The Second Vatican Council stated that “Peace on earth, which flows from love of one’s neighbor, symbolizes and derives from the peace of Christ who proceeds from God the Father” (Gaudium et Spes, 78). As Catholics we seek to build bridges of peace and respect with our neighbors, yet there are many in our society for whom this peace is elusive. These victims of Domestic Violence rely on us, their neighbors, to foster an environment of peace so that they too may experience the peace of Christ.
During the month of October the Church endeavors to promote a respect for all life. I once again proclaim October to be National Domestic Violence Awareness Month in the parishes of the Diocese of Palm Beach. I invite and encourage the faithful to offer their thoughts and prayers for the many victims of domestic violence. Through our prayers, our acts of charity and our caring involvement, may we create an environment of peace and tranquility where these innocent victims may feel welcome and safe.
October is also National Council of Catholic Women month. I offer my heartfelt thanks to all that the Councils of Catholic Women do on the parish, diocesan, state and national levels to eradicate this injustice and to share the healing love of Christ with those in need.
As you gather as a parish family of faith during the month of October, I invite you to remember in your prayers the many people who suffer from Domestic Violence. Your intercessory prayers are effective and meaningful and I thank you for all that you do on behalf of your brothers and sisters in need.
May God bless you and fill you with His grace and peace and may the Blessed Virgin Mary always intercede for you and for our Diocese.
With every prayerful wish, I am Sincerely yours in Christ,
Most Reverend Gerald M. Barbarito
Bishop of Palm Beach
NOTE TO PASTORS:
Please read at all Masses or place in the parish bulletin on a weekend of your choosing during the
month of October.