We give thanks to God for the great news that Pope Francis will be visiting the United States in September 2015. We pray that his pastoral visit will confirm the American people in the great truth that Francis has communicated throughout his pontificate: that God never grows tired of loving us.
We also hope his visit will compel our country's leaders to move past partisan divisions and work together to create a nation where everyone has a name, a face and a future. We join our prayers with Francis and "beg the Lord to grant us more politicians who are genuinely disturbed by the state of society, the people and the lives of the poor!"
Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good was thrilled to learn of Pope Francis's invitation to the leaders of Israel and Palestine for peace talks in the Vatican. Let's be clear: we believe that Pope Francis's initiative can work. We believe that the peace of Jesus Christ can heal all divisions. The Vicar of Christ is now showing us that reality within the context of our society's current trials. Our organization offers the Holy Father whatever we can give during this time of great excitement and hope.
We at Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good mourn the passing of Congressman Jim Oberstar, who died on the morning of May 3rd. Congressman Oberstar played a crucial role in our organization's founding and early years of growth. He was a patriot and a statesman who served his constituents, his country and his Church with honor and distinction. While we mourn his loss, we give thanks to God for having known him. He exemplified what a public servant ought to be: someone deeply in touch with the needs and concerns of his fellow citizens and fully devoted to his nation’s posterity. May Congressman Oberstar rest in the peace of Christ.
Today, a minority of United States Senators made the immoral choice to block an increase in the federal minimum wage. Just earlier this week, Pope Francis tweeted that "inequality is the root of social evil." And the inequality created when our workers receive unjust wages is clearly a main catalyst of the current economic crisis.
But the people most affected by this disastrous decision are struggling American families who exist on the fringes of this broken economy.
The Catholic faith teaches us that human work has intrinsic dignity, and that just wages honor that dignity.
For months now, the media has talked about how Paul Ryan has made a shift on addressing poverty, partly inspired by Pope Francis's example. Unfortunately, his budget released this past week is just more of the same. For the fourth straight year, Representative Ryan's plan attempts to balance the budget on the backs of the poor.
The Catholic Church is clear: the budget is a moral document that expresses the priorities of a nation. Ryan's budget cuts funding from programs that serve the poor, while giving tax breaks to the wealthiest of Americans.
Therefore, today we asked our membership sign on to this letter to Representative Ryan asking him to change priorities, and pass a budget that better serves the poorest in our midst.
Catholics around the nation applaud the tremendous courage shown by Boston Archbishop Cardinal Sean O'Malley and the seven bishops who participated in today's Mass and rally on the border of the United States and Mexico.
Cardinal O'Malley and his brother bishops are right: our current immigration system is a moral calamity that denies aspiring Americans their rights and dignity as children of God. Scripture tells us that God will judge the nations by how they treat the most marginalized in their midst. Knowing this truth, we pray that God's spirit will animate our leaders in the United States Congress and that we will be a nation where all are welcomed and where every aspiring immigrant is treated as a child of God and a brother and sister in Jesus Christ.
In light of his recent invitation to Pope Francis to address to the United States, today Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good called on Speaker of the House John Boehner to take up immigration reform. In a letter to our membership, CACG asked members to sign a letter asking Speaker to break away from the fringe elements of his party and move forward with voting on immigration reform.
CACG will deliver the letter and the signatures to the Speaker next week.
Today, Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good joined other prominent Catholic leaders and organizations in a letter asking members of the United States Senate to heed the wisdom of Pope Francis and not support any more sanctions on Iran during the middle of the ongoing peace talks. Fred Rotondaro, chairman of the organization.
“We believe that our elected officials in the United States should follow the wisdom of Pope Francis on this crucial issue.” said Fred Rotondaro, chairman of Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good. “He’s right: all means of diplomacy should be exercised in the pursuit of peace. The proposed sanctions would only make this process all the more difficult.”
The letter was placed online at NoMoreSanctions.Org, where the sponsoring organizations have asked for their membership to sign on. The final letter with signatures will be distributed to the members of the United States Senate next week.
Catholics across the nation are thrilled to learn this morning of the upcoming meeting between Pope Francis and President Obama on March 27th in Rome. The Catholic Church in the United States and the American government have a long standing partnership in serving the poorest and most vulnerable people in our nation. We hope that this meeting between the Pope and the President will help strengthen the relationship between the Church and the Administration and increase their shared commitment to fighting poverty and the growing economic inequalities that have for far too long plagued our great nation.