Bishop’s Letter to the Faithful of the Diocese of Charlotte
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
The grace of the Lord Jesus be with you. There is a deep sadness at the center of our hearts over the horribly tragic death of George Floyd, and now Rayshard Brooks, and all that has transpired over the past few weeks. Please join me in praying for the repose of the souls of George and Rayshard, and for God’s strength and love to be with their families and friends, and all who mourn their passing.
We also must pray for our country, that the Holy Spirit will help us to heal deep wounds and hurts in our society, and help us move toward reconciliation and peace. We Catholic bishops in the United States affirmed in Open Wide Our Hearts: The Enduring Call to Love – A Pastoral Letter Against Racism, that racism infects our nation. We wrote: “Racism arises when – either consciously or unconsciously – a person holds that his or her own race or ethnicity is superior, and therefore judges persons of other races or ethnicities as inferior and unworthy of equal regard. When this conviction or attitude leads individuals or groups to exclude, ridicule, mistreat, or unjustly discriminate against persons on the basis of their race or ethnicity, it is sinful. Racist acts are sinful because they violate justice. They reveal a failure to acknowledge the human dignity of the persons offended, to recognize them as the neighbors Christ calls us to love (Mt. 22:39).”
In our recent celebration of the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ (Corpus Christi), Saint Paul reminded us: “Because there is one bread, we who are many are one body, for we all partake of the one bread” (1 Cor. 10:17). As Catholics, our unity in Christ is strengthened by our partaking of the one Holy Eucharist, Jesus. Through our union with Christ, may we who are of different races and ethnicities in the Diocese of Charlotte remain united to each other in mutual love, and be a leaven of Christ’s peace in our local communities. May the Prince of Peace generously bestow His blessing upon us, especially at this time of great need.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Most Reverend Peter J. Jugis
Bishop of Charlotte