We were all saddened, outraged and alarmed by another act of senseless violence last week, this time at the Tree of Life Congregation, a synagogue in Pittsburgh, PA. Whenever a place of worship is attacked it is particularly disturbing for the faithful of every religious denomination. We mourn the victims, and I ask you all to keep their loved ones in your prayers.
While details about the suspect who committed this unspeakable crime are still being reported, his obviously anti-Semitic beliefs are documented well enough for us to know that it fueled this cowardly and despicable act. No Christian can everapprove of or support anti-Semitism or any other form of racism, which are totally inconsistent with Gospel values.
An attack on ANY place of worship is an attack on ALL. St. Charles Borromeo stands in solidarity with the people of Tree of Life Congregation, as we stood and continue to stand with the people of Emmanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston, SC and wherever freedom of worship and the lives of our fellow human beings are threatened by people whose minds and hearts are poisoned by bigotry and hate.
The Parish Staff and I continue to look for ways to ensure the safety of all who come to our parish complex. We continue to employ police presence in our parking lot before and between Masses, have added security cameras inside and outside our buildings, and have had meetings with our Hospitality Ministers and parishioners with law-enforcement backgrounds and training regarding the prevention of threatening situations and what to do in case of an emergency. We hope to significantly upgrade our security systems with the help of our Catholic Strong campaign, so please keep that in mind as we continue to progress through its phases. The most important thing is vigilance. If you see something that looks in any way suspicious, please inform an Usher, Priest or Deacon. You can also report it to the police officer on duty when present.
As a reminder, please do NOT bring backpacks and duffel bags of any kind into ANY of our buildings unless you have a specific letter of permission signed by me with the raised church seal embossed on it, which you are to bring with you and produce if you are stopped by anyone acting in an official capacity on behalf of the parish. Your cooperation is greatly appreciated.
So as we remember and pray for our beloved deceased throughout November, the month dedicated to All Souls, let us remember in our prayers the victims of this latest tragedy and all others like it; and pray that somehow the Lord will help us to truly beat our swords into plowshares.
LET’S GO EAGLES, FLYERS AND SIXERS!
In His Love,