Florida Bishops

The pastoral nature of the episcopacy inspires our three bishop publishers to use the Florida Catholic as a forum to shine a light on issues of importance to Catholic faith. Whether reflecting on the different liturgical seasons of the Church, delving into the inspirational lives of the saints, or highlighting the good deeds of the local church, Bishops John Noonan, Gerald M. Barbarito and Frank J. Dewane hope visitors will gain insight from the words offered in their columns.

Bishop Noonan

Diocese of Orlando

Peace that Jesus offers is a gift of salvation

My Sisters and Brothers in Christ:

Peace be with you. Jesus’ peace is not the type of peace by which we have come to understand in the secular world. It is not merely extending an olive branch to someone with whom we are disgruntled or even to establish peace with another country. The peace that Jesus offers is a gift of salvation, connoting the bounty of messianic blessing. His peace is the breath of the Holy Spirit, it is his last breath upon the cross, it is total forgiveness, acceptance and complete love. It is what we are fed within the Sacrament of the Eucharist. This peace dwells within the true sanctuary of Jesus and we are members of this household of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets.


Bishop Barbarito

Diocese of Palm Beach

Celebrating Our Lady of La Vang

As every year in our Diocese on the first Sunday of May, we celebrated our annual diocesan Marian Festival. This year, as in so many preceding years, the festival took place at the Rosary Walk of Emmanuel Parish in Delray Beach. While there was a threat of rain, it held off for the entire time we were outdoors at the beautiful Rosary Walk honoring Our Lady. Present were many statues and icons of Mary representing the many diverse cultural backgrounds of our diocese in such a rich manner. The presence of so many of the faithful of our diocese from different nationalities represented well the faith that is present here and the reality that Mary is our mother and relates to all of us in our particular backgrounds and situations. As always, the festival was a moving experience of faith centered on Mary as integral to who we are as the followers of her son in the Catholic Church.


Bishop Dewane

Diocese of Venice

Bishop Dewane Joins Coalition Voicing Religious Freedom Concerns with the Equality Act

Four chairmen of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) have cosigned a coalition letter highlighting key religious freedom concerns with the Equality Act (H.R. 5 / S. 788). The Act would add the new terms “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” to the definition of “sex” in federal civil rights laws and have wide-reaching consequences for both employment and delivery of service standards in religiously-affiliated schools, shelters, foster care and adoption agencies, potentially houses of worship, and other facilities and ministries.


Florida Conference
of Catholic Bishops


Statement on Passage of State-Level Immigration Enforcement (SB 168)

“Today’s passage of state-level immigration enforcement legislation is disheartening. There are many, including members of the Florida Legislature, who are frustrated that Congress has not enacted needed immigration reforms. However, immigration law is, and should remain, in the purview of the federal, not state, government.