Religious freedom remains one of America's most precious possessions. And, as my brothers, the United States Bishops, have reminded us, all are called to be vigilant, precisely as good citizens, to preserve and defend that freedom from everything that would threaten or compromise it. - Pope Francis
Bishop Luis Rafael Zarama kicked off Religious Freedom Week on June 21, the Feast of Saints Thomas More and John Fisher. Following an evening Mass, a picnic reception was held on the grounds of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Raleigh, hosted by the Knights of Columbus.
Religious Freedom Week invites people of faith to renew their commitment to serving others in God’s love in health care, child welfare, migration and refugee resettlement, education, and more.
Bishop Zarama noted in his homily that God is always looking to rescue us and give us his light. Especially during Religious Freedom Week, Bishop Zarama explained that first we need to see how open we are to receiving that gift and experiencing that gift in our own lives.
Watch Bishop Zarama's homily
Religious Freedom Week takes place June 22 - 29, 2018. The theme this year is “Serving Others in God’s Love” and will celebrate the values of our faith with respect to the gift of life, marriage, conscience rights and many humanitarian concerns. During Religious Freedom Week the faithful are encouraged to pray for the intention of preserving and promoting religious freedom and to dedicate any of their regularly scheduled devotions, such as holy hours or the holy rosary, to this intention. For more information go to USCCB Religious Freedom Week. For more information and educational resources on the Fortnight for Freedom, contact Mary Beth Phillips at Marybeth.firstname.lastname@example.org or 919-719-8267.