Statement from Bishop Frank J. Dewane on Pa. Grand Jury Report
As your Bishop, I understand the grave moral responsibility with which I have been entrusted and that it is my duty to protect the faithful from harm. Recent revelations of profound evil cause me deep distress. The sexual abuse inflicted on so many sons and daughters of the Church is sinful and criminal. Some Church Hierarchy failed to do as they were obligated to do. While we are all sinners, the heinous history of abuse and coverup, such as that detailed by the Grand Jury in Pennsylvania, is utterly appalling and deeply disturbing.
Bishop supports Pope Francis regarding death penalty
When it was announced in early August that Pope Francis approved a change to the Catechism of the Catholic Church deeming capital punishment inadmissible, Bishop Frank J. Dewane was not surprised. “The Holy Father addressed this when he was in the United States for the World Meeting of Families in 2015, is his address to Congress,” Bishop Dewane said. “Pope Francis was clear that the death penalty should be overturned, so, I’m not surprised that he’s followed up in this way and he’s done it really on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the publication of the Catechism of the Catholic Church; and he took that as an opportunity to change one of the points.” As Chairman of the U. S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, Bishop Dewane released a public statement in support of Pope Francis’ actions on behalf of the Conference.
Bishop reads to support literacy campaign
To the delight of young boys and girls, Bishop Frank J. Dewane read a book to children at Casa San Juan Bosco farmworker housing community of Catholic Charities Diocese of Venice Inc. in Arcadia. The 39 children, from kindergarten through fourth grade, were participating in a summer afternoon reading program that was part of the Suncoast Campaign for Grade-Level Reading, and made possible through the support of the Patterson Foundation with partnerships with the Community Foundation of Sarasota and the United Way Suncoast.
Christ is Risen! Alleluia!
It is with great joy that we sing Alleluia! Jesus Christ has indeed Risen. The Resurrection of Jesus Christ is the source of Christian hope. By His action, Christ conquers sin and death and unlocks for the Faithful the path to life eternal.
Lent, a New Beginning
Pope Francis has described Lent as a new beginning, a path leading to the certain goal of Easter, Christ’s victory over death. As believers in Christ, each of us must take advantage as Lent is an appropriate time for deepening one’s spiritual life through the means of sanctification offered by the Church: fasting, prayer and almsgiving. The message from the Holy Father is clear; we must take time out of our busy schedules to renew our encounter with Christ, living in His Word, in the Sacraments and in our neighbors. During this season we are invited to hear and ponder more deeply the Word of God, which is the foundation for the Faith.
Advent: A Season of preparation and expectation
Advent is a season of preparation and expectation. The Church describes Advent as a season “of devout and expectant delight.” In Universal Norms on the Liturgical Year, the Church says, “Advent has a twofold character, for it is a time of preparation for the Solemnities of Christmas, in which the First Coming of the Son of God to humanity is remembered, and likewise a time when, with remembrance of this, minds and hearts are led to look forward to Christ’s Second Coming at the end of time” (39). In Advent, we look forward not only to the commemoration of Christ’s birth at Christmas, but also to his return.
Bishop Dewane to consult on USCCB Anti-Racism Committee
Bishop Frank J. Dewane has been named as a consultant to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ new Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism. Jesuit Bishop George Murry of Youngstown, Ohio, chair of the Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism, revealed the board and consulting members of the Committee Oct. 2. Bishop Murry explained the new anti-racism committee would promote human dignity, which he hoped would channel social frustrations toward peaceful solutions. “The problems of racism are deep and widespread and will take time to heal.”
Bishop out front speaking against racism
“We stand against the evil of racism, white supremacy and neo-nazism. We stand with our sisters and brothers united in the sacrifice of Jesus, by which love’s victory over every form of evil is assured. At Mass, let us offer a special prayer of gratitude for the brave souls who sought to protect us from the violent ideology displayed yesterday. Let us especially remember those who lost their lives. Let us join their witness and stand against every form of oppression.”
July radio show with bishop focuses on death penalty
As chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, the death penalty in the United States falls under Bishop Frank Dewane’s purview. As chair, he encourages people to be more attuned to what is happening in Florida and nationwide regarding the death penalty debate with the cruelty of executions, the fact that the death penalty does not reduce crimes, botched executions, fights over the medications used, and more people exonerated from death row each year.
“For these reasons, the number of people who are opposed to the death penalty has increased in recent years,” Bishop Dewane said. “We do not want this license to kill to be used so freely as it has been in the past. We want it stopped. There is nothing restorative about killing the person.”
The Paris Agreement and global solidarity
President Donald Trump is taking time to listen to his advisers on whether the United States should honor the Paris Agreement on climate change. The administration has repeatedly delayed its decision and an announcement is expected after the meeting of G-7 leaders in Sicily. This delay may be a good thing.
On his way to Sicily, President Trump met with Pope Francis, exactly on the second anniversary of the promulgation of “Laudato Si'” May 24. While it is not known that the date of their meeting was deliberate, Pope Francis gave a copy of his ecological encyclical to the president, who said he would read it. One may still hope that the president will embrace and apply the message of “Laudato Si'” during his term in office.
Faithful urged to spread the good news throughout Easter Season
hroughout the Universal Church the faithful gathered for a joyous celebration on Easter; that is the Resurrection of Our Lord, the summit of the Catholic faith. Easter is not simply one feast among others, but the “Feast of feasts,” the “Solemnity of solemnities.”
This celebration comes after the holiest of weeks which began with the entrance of Jesus to Jerusalem on Palm Sunday and included the institution of the Eucharist (Communion) during the Last Supper, institution of the Sacrament of Holy Orders as well as the betrayal by Judas on Holy Thursday, and the suffering and death of Our Lord on Good Friday. The Resurrection on Easter completes the journey for Jesus, but it is just the beginning of a new journey of belief and hope for the faithful, Bishop Frank J. Dewane explained during an Easter Vigil Mass April 15 at Epiphany Cathedral in Venice.
Bishop Dewane’s Easter mesage
Christ the Lord is Risen, Alleluia! A Happy and Blessed Easter to one and all!
Today we celebrate the Resurrection of Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ! The Risen Lord gives us the hope that we too will rise again and live with Him for eternity. As people of hope, we live the promise of a share in His Resurrection.
This message of hope is written throughout Scripture and gives to you and to me the confidence that God loves us. We know he will never abandon us regardless of the trials we face in our life on earth. In the Gospel of St. John, Jesus tells us, “I am the resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me, even if he dies, will live, and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die.”
Lent is a time of reflection, prayer
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
During the Lenten Season, the Church encourages us to spend time in prayer so that we may grow in spiritual maturity. This growth is from the early stages that ask, “When can I fit God in?” to those deeper or more advanced stages that ask, “How can I not fit God in?”
Lent: A time of compassion
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
As our 40-day journey of Lent proceeds in preparation for Easter, not only is it important to “give up” a bad habit or creature comfort, but in the sacrifice of letting go, the call is to “turn toward” God and embrace the Lord’s invitation to serve Him in “the least of these.”
In Sacred Scripture Jesus repeatedly identifies Himself with those who suffer and who lack basic necessities. If our Lenten prayer and sacrifice are real, and we are growing closer to Christ, we cannot be indifferent to our neighbors’ needs. Rather, the call is to identify with Jesus’ presence in the poor and respond with compassion, embracing the opportunity to engage in spiritual and corporal works of mercy.
Walking in the footsteps of Christ: Lent as a pilgrimage
Dear Brothers and Sisters, Pilgrams in Christ,
Lent possesses certain rich spiritual themes that speak powerfully to us today. One important theme is Lent as a journey toward God. In many respects this spiritual journey of 40 days toward Easter resembles the ancient tradition of going on pilgrimage.
The role of pilgrimage remains an important spiritual tool for Christians, as is seen in the thousands who annually trek the Camino de Santiago de Compostela in Northern Spain, St. Patrick’s Footsteps in Ireland, or the Route of Saints to Wawel Castle in Krakow, Poland. In our own locale, many in the Year of Mercy traveled to walk through the Holy Door of Mercy as a symbolic gesture to open their hearts and lives to the grace of the Holy Spirit.