(ZENIT News / Washington, 12.28.2023).- Catholics in the United States will have an opportunity to show solidarity and share their faith by giving to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) annual Collection for the Church in Latin America next month. Last year, the collection delivered more than $6.5 million in grants to help people who reside in regions where poverty, political and religious persecution, and other hardships make it difficult for the Church to support itself.
“In an era with too much focus on what divides us from our sisters and brothers in Latin America, Catholics across the United States continue to strengthen our bonds of faith, hope, and love through their gifts to the U.S. bishops’ annual Collection for the Church in Latin America,” said Bishop Octavio Cisneros, emeritus auxiliary bishop of Brooklyn and chairman of the USCCB Subcommittee on the Church in Latin America.
Last year, this collection funded 251 grants supporting evangelization, catechesis, family ministry, pro-life work and outreach to groups as diverse as prisoners, university students, and Indigenous communities; sponsoring the formation of seminarians, clergy and those in consecrated life; as well as for emergency disaster relief after hurricanes, earthquakes and floods.
- In the Diocese of Itztapalpa, Mexico, where hunger drives high rates of crime and incarceration, the Collection for the Church in Latin America supported an evangelization center where newly released convicts receive practical help with job-hunting, along with spiritual and emotional support and opportunities for recreation.
- In Brazil, where persons of African ancestry suffer racial discrimination, the National Conference of Bishops of Brazil obtained a grant to engage Afro-Brazilian Catholic leaders in helping the Church more effectively promote and live Pope Francis’ vision for loving our neighbors.
- In Peru, a grant to the Prelature of Chuquibambilla in the Andes supported alliances between Church leaders, healthcare organizations and law enforcement to teach church workers how to prevent, report and respond to suspected abuse of children and vulnerable adults.
- In Colombia, the Sisters of the Eucharistic Communicators of the Heavenly Father are teaching the Bible, Catholic doctrine, spirituality, and family life-skills, such as budgeting, to families in spiritual and material need with funding from the collection.
Many dioceses will take the collection in their parishes on January 28. #iGiveCatholicTogether also accepts funds for the collection.
For more information see www.usccb.org/latin-america.