CA Catholic Conference, Catholic Health Care Ministries and Catholic Charities Support COVID-19 Vaccinations In the Gospel of Luke (5:17-26) the friends of a paralytic man bring him to Jesus for healing. The crowds are so great that they must dismantle the roof to lower their suffering friend before Jesus who then heals the paralytic. During this pandemic, we have the opportunity to serve in a similar way. It is in that spirit of friendship and solidarity, the California Catholic Conference, Catholic health care systems and hospitals in California, Catholic Charities and other health-related ministries issued the following statement: The California Catholic Conference[i] affirms that the imminent Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines are morally acceptable and commit to working closely with Catholic health care ministries and Catholic Charities to: Promote and encourage COVID-19 vaccinations in collaboration with state and local governments and other entities; Advocate on behalf of vulnerable populations to ensure that they have access to safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines; and, Provide regular and accurate information to parishioners and the community in support of morally acceptable, safe, and effective COVID-19 vaccines. Life has changed this year in ways few of us could have imagined. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought a loss of life and livelihood to every community, rich and poor. We mourn for those who have died and for their families, and we offer our prayers and assistance to those struggling with loss of businesses, unemployment, loneliness, anxiety, and other traumas brought on by this calamity. Continue Reading Advent Resources There is no question that absence of annual Christmas liturgies, gatherings, concerts, and other activities will make Advent feel much different this year. Instead of focusing on what may be absent, there is an opportunity to focus this Advent on directing our hearts and minds to Christ without many of the common distractions this time of year often brings. To help get you started, the USCCB has a variety of resources to help celebrate the Advent season including video reflections, parish resources, and blessings. The National Catholic Register has a list of seven ideas for a fruitful and joyful season, seizing opportunities created by the pandemic’s lockdown. Finally, Catholic News Service offers a reflection on seeking the face of God during this season, calling us to humility, hope and serving others to truly find God. Samaritanus bonus defends the value of life and dignity for the chronically and terminally ill, urging true care and accompaniment Amid a global increase in physician-assisted suicide legislation and the proliferation of euthanistic practices in so-called end-of life-care protocols, the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) in Samaritanus bonus offers clear moral teaching on the dignity and value of life at all stages until natural death, the intrinsic immorality of euthanasia and assisted suicide, and calls for authentic, integral care and spiritual accompaniment. Ordered for publication by Pope Francis, Samaritanus bonus reaffirms Catholic moral teaching that death cannot be directly sought nor intended by actions or omissions during end-of-life care. Continue Reading On the Web: Tell Congress to Act Now to Provide COVID-19 Relief Before Christmas - It has been nearly eight months since Congress passed a COVID-19 aid package. Much of the aid from that legislation has already expired and more will stop at the end of this year. Congress must act quickly to pass a new COVD-19 relief package that addresses the needs of the poor and vulnerable. Families cannot wait any longer. Failure to act would leave millions struggling to pay rent, buy food, afford healthcare, maintain employment, and meet their basic human needs. Act Now.