the wooden rosary on the open Bible

Catholics in the United States are observing Religious Freedom week, and annual celebration that begins on the feast of Sts John Fisher and Thomas More, and concludes on the solemnity of Sts Peter and Paul. This year, the theme for the Week is “Serving Others in God’s Love.” During Religious Freedom Week, organized by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), people of faith are invited to reflect on, and pray for religious freedom, as well as take action to promote and defend religious liberty in the United States and around the world.

As reported by Vatican Radio, the chairman of the Bishops’ Committee for Religious Liberty, His Excellency Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville, Kentucky, remarked that , “The primary message on religious freedom is to recognize the precious gift that we have, and to recall that this year’s theme is to use religious freedom to serve others in God’s love.”

Worldwide, His Grace Archbishop Kurtz focused on the increasing persecution of religious believers around the world. Although there is naturally an emphasis on persecution of Christians, the Archbishop said, the Church is concerned to protect religious freedom for all people of faith. He emphasized the importance of providing assistance to persecuted Christians, and highlighted the work of the Knights of Columbus in helping Christians in the Middle East.