The CA Bishops are supporting the launch of the Laudato Si’ Action Platform; private schools have yet to receive COVID-19 funding; the CCC welcomes Molly Sheahan as Respect Life Director; and National Vocation Awareness Week in this week’s Insights.
CA Bishops Support Launch of Laudato Si’ Action Platform
The California Conference of Catholic Bishops is joining Pope Francis in the launch of the Laudato Si’ Action Platform (LSAP), scheduled to kick off on Sunday, November 14.
The LSAP is a list of seven goals that the Holy Father has outlined to help spur a worldwide grassroots effort to mobilize Catholics to take action on the environment over a period of seven years
California parishes on Nov. 14 will include liturgical messages on how we all can seek out opportunities to reflect on the call to be good stewards as outlined in the Bishops’ pastoral statement God Calls Us All to Care for our Common Home, as well as Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato Si.’
“Every person in the pew needs to understand how important this is and how we can make substantial progress on these issues if we work together, and not instead destroy because of our selfishness,” said Bishop Gerald Wilkerson, Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and chair of the bishops committee on Environmental Stewardship.
“Sometimes we think they are just small ways to help, but when we come together, they are big,” he said.
Everyone is encouraged to sign up at www.laudatosiactionplatform.org. Sign-ups can be individual, with your school, with your parish, or even your community. Liturgy materials are available, as well as summaries of the Bishops’ statement in English and Spanish.
For Months, California Private Schools Have Been Waiting for ‘Emergency’ COVID Aid
“We aren’t asking for anything other than what public school kids need,” said Kathleen Domingo, executive director of the California Catholic Conference, the public policy voice of the Catholic Church of California. “I don’t understand why the department has been choosing to drag their feet in such a prolonged manner.”
Recognizing that all schools were struggling with Covid, Congress offered help this year for private along with public schools. The $5.5 billion for non-public schools was small compared with the $230 billion in pandemic relief for public schools since March 2020, but nonetheless an unprecedented amount.
Congress titled it “Emergency Assistance for Non-Public Schools” to stress that the money should go out the door quickly, especially to schools serving low-income families. A big beneficiary was to be California’s urban parochial schools, surviving financially for years on the margins and on their wits. Still, they wondered if the state’s share — $368 million split over two rounds of funding —was too good to be true.
For the seven months since Gov. Gavin Newsom applied for and received the money, it has been. Some schools fronted tens of thousands of dollars for Chromebooks, air filtration systems, and PPE assuming they’d be quickly reimbursed. They weren’t. The first checks went out last week, and most won’t be paid until sometime next month.
Molly Sheahan Joins California Catholic Conference as Respect Life Director