FutureChurch is proud to stand with our friends and partners in the Church reform and renewal community in signing the following statement.
We, the undersigned members of Catholic Organizations for Renewal (COR), are outraged by and unequivocally condemn the violent storming of the United States Capitol that we witnessed on January 6, 2021. At the same time, as faithful Catholics, we lament the U.S. Catholic community’s complicity and participation in fostering an environment that encouraged and enabled such violence.
To be clear, the chaos and violence that terrorized our nation on Wednesday was a direct and foreseeable result of more than four years of President Trump’s violent, racist, xenophobic, and misogynistic rhetoric – rhetoric that many U.S. bishops repeatedly failed to name and condemn both individually and collectively. Even now, the president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) released a tepid statement that condemns violence but does not acknowledge President Trump’s role in encouraging it or their own complicity in it.
We also recognize that many of our fellow Catholics staunchly supported Donald J. Trump throughout his four years as president. Some even served in the administration. And nearly half of Catholic voters supported his reelection in 2020.
We cannot ignore that many Catholics cast their votes influenced – in part – by statements, letters and sermons from clergy that masqueraded as Catholic teaching. At odds with Pope Francis, the official statement of the USCCB, “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship,” placed opposing abortion access and LGBTQ rights above upholding the lives and dignity of the poor and vulnerable, reversing the disastrous effects of global climate change, and dismantling oppressive ideologies such as white supremacy and nationalism.
As a people of faith, we reaffirm our commitment to Gospel values of non-violence and love of neighbor and we pray that the violence that unfolded before us on the Feast of the Epiphany will yield a new epiphany – that we as a Catholic community will work with ever more diligence to become the community of justice-makers that our baptisms call us to. We pray, too, for President-elect Joseph R. Biden (a fellow, faithful Catholic), Vice-President-elect Kamala Harris, and all our elected representatives as they begin the work of leading our nation toward healing and justice.
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