Insights: CCC Celebrates 50th Anniversary as Voice for Life and Dignity

Bishop Cummins

California Catholic Conference Celebrates Fifty Years as a Voice for Life and Dignity

This article is the first in a series celebrating the California Catholic Conference’s 50th anniversary and its contributions to the lives of Catholics in the state through public policy and advocacy. (Photo: Bishop John Cummins, the founding executive director of the California Catholic Conference, during the CCC’s zoom event for Bishops this week, kicking off a year-long 50th anniversary celebration.)

In 1990, Father Sylvester Ryan was flabbergasted to be named an auxiliary bishop of Los Angeles. As he learned about a calling he had never expected, he encountered the California Catholic Conference (CCC), the public affairs arm of the state’s bishops.

His first CCC meeting gave him a new respect for the ministry of bishops.

“I was in awe,” he said.

It wasn’t the bishops’ ecclesiastical power that impressed him, but their pastoral concern for people in need.

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World Day of the Sick February 11

February 11 marks the Church’s annual observance of World Day of the Sick when Catholics offer prayers for those suffering from illness. The National Association of Catholic Chaplains has developed resources to help with the planning and celebration of World Day of the Sick. The resources include suggestions and prayers that can be used by individuals as well as by dioceses, parishes, health care institutions, and other organizations.

This year is especially poignant with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The Bishops of California are urging everyone to get vaccinated as soon as possible out of care for neighbors and community.  Please remember in your prayers as well, the healthcare workers and their families who are at the forefront of our defenses against the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

Click here for English and Spanish Bulletin Announcements from the Bishops urging COVID-19 vaccinations.

 

COVID-19 Webinars with ER Dr. Daniel Chavira

The Center for Religion and Spirituality recently held a webinar interview with Dr. Daniel Chavira, an emergency physician and medical director of Clinical Observation at Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Hospital, currently the “epicenter of the epicenter” of COVID in the world. Dr. Chavira spoke on the state of COVID in Los Angeles, advances in care, the prospects of relief in the coming months, including vaccines, and best practices to care for yourself during the current crisis.

Region Eleven Commission for the Spanish Speaking (RECOSS) will be hosting a similar session in Spanish discussing Latinos and COVID-19 on February 11 from 7-8 pm on YouTube (Ministerio Hispaña Region XI) and Facebook (XI.recoss).

 

Earned Income Tax Awareness

Tax season is here and so is expanded eligibility for California’s Earned Income Tax Credit

(CalEITC), a refundable tax credit enacted in 2015, assists lower-income working Californians.

For the first time, Californians who file their taxes with an ITIN — Individual Taxpayer Identification Number — including undocumented Californians, can qualify for the CalEITC and the Young Child Tax Credit (YCTC). For more information on the ETIC, visit www.CalETIC4me.org.

 

Free Webinar-Based Certificate in Restorative Justice

The CCC Restorative Justice Committee is launching the Catholic Restorative Justice Network with a FREE “Certificate in Restorative Justice,” a webinar program created in collaboration with Santa Clara University Pastoral Ministries Program and the local diocesan Restorative Justice Director.  

The program will have six sessions between February 21 and May 20. It is open to all.  This certificate of completion program can be added to current diocesan training and formation programs, lay ministry programs, trainings, basic and masters catechist certificate programs, and more. Learn more at www.restorejustice.com.

 

In the News

  • Pope Francis to Appear at RE Congress - Pope Francis will deliver a message at the Opening Ceremony of the Virtual RE Congress 2021 on February 18. Watch the historic announcement here and click here to register.

 

  • World Day of Prayer for Human Trafficking - On February 8th, Catholics worldwide are encouraged to host or attend prayer services to generate greater awareness about human trafficking. We pray that we may work together to remove the causes of this disgraceful scourge that is present in all our cities and neighborhoods. Click here for a Day of Prayer Toolkit

February 8th is also the feast day of St. Josephine Bakhita, who was kidnapped and enslaved as a child. She ultimately was sold to an Italian diplomat and taken to Italy, where she bravely asserted her freedom with the help of the Cannossian Sisters of Venice. Through her faith, St. Bakhita realized the promise of liberty inherent in the human spirit.

 

  • Bishop Chairmen Express Support for Additional COVID-Relief Package        Following proposals and discussions from the Biden Administration and members of Congress regarding a new COVID-relief package, several bishop chairmen of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) wrote to all members of Congress in support of an additional package.

 

“We welcome these Executive Orders on migration, which will help to ensure that immigrants and refugees are treated humanely and in accordance with their God-given dignity. Actions implemented by the prior administration on these issues have directly impacted and harmed immigrants’ and refugees’ lives, in many cases needlessly instilling fear and creating or perpetuating family separation.”

 

There is no time today for indifference. Either we are brothers and sisters, or everything will fall apart. Fraternity is the new frontier for humanity on which we need to build; it is the challenge of our century.  @Pontifex

 

February 5, 2021
Vol. 14, No. 5

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