Catholic Charities Maine unequivocally condemns the senseless killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. This horrific crime is one of many recent examples of racial injustice and the systemic racism that continues to destroy the lives of countless Black men, women, and children in this country.
In the words of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), "Racism has rightly been called America's original sin. It remains a blot on our national life and continues to cause acts and attitudes of hatred, as recent events have made evident. The need to condemn, and combat, the demonic ideologies of white supremacy, neo-Nazism and racism has become especially urgent at this time. Our efforts must be constantly led and accompanied by prayer—but they must also include concrete action."
As we pray for the family of George Floyd, we also share the outrage of the Black community. We understand that protests in communities around the country reflect the justified frustration and anger over voices not being heard. Valid protests should not be exploited by persons who have different values and agendas. Burning and looting communities, ruining the livelihoods of our neighbors, does not advance the cause of racial equality and human dignity.
We can do better. We must do better. In the words of our own Bishop Robert Deeley “People of good conscience must never turn a blind eye when citizens are being deprived of their human dignity and even their lives. Indifference is not an option.”
We want to leave you with a prayer from USCCB and a link to additional resources:
Wake Me Up Lord
Wake me up Lord, so that the evil of racism
finds no home within me.
Keep watch over my heart Lord,
and remove from me any barriers to your grace,
that may oppress and offend my brothers and sisters.
Fill my spirit Lord, so that I may give
services of justice and peace.
Clear my mind Lord, and use it for your glory.
And finally, remind us Lord that you said,
"blessed are the peacemakers,
for they shall be called children of God." Amen.
Here is a link to additional prayer and reflection resources on racism: