“We are called to live together in solidarity”

Open Letter on the Economy to Catholics in Southeast Michigan

Dec 5, 2008
For more information contact:
Ned McGrath, Director of Public Affairs

Cardinal Adam Maida, archbishop of Detroit, writes to the clergy and laity this weekend (the Second Sunday of Advent) on the economy.  His pastoral letter — “Christ Our Hope” — will be distributed in parishes and will appear on the archdiocesan Web site and in its weekly newspaper.

Distributed to churchgoers in six counties on December 6-7, key topics in the letter include: the common good, charity, and stewardship.  The 1.3 million Catholics in the archdiocese can also read the pastoral letter in The Michigan Catholic newspaper and at AODonline.org.  The online resources will be continually updated.

Concerned for the faith life, as well as the practical, everyday realities for Catholics and their fellow citizens in southeast Michigan, Cardinal Maida wanted to communicate a message of hope and encouragement in these challenging and stress-filled economic times.

Key quotes include:

“The automobile industry, our primary employer, is going through major challenges and transitions.  While many of us have lived through other times of downsizing and economic downturns, this time, the prospects for recovery require radical changes.  Things in Michigan will probably never be the same.”

“After a fire 200 years ago devastated our then-frontier settlement of Detroit, Fr. Gabriel Richard wrote: ‘We hope for better things; it will arise from the ashes.’  Those words inspire us to this day as the motto of the City of Detroit.”

“… instead of giving into divisiveness, each day we need to renew our commitment to the common good … we are called to live together in solidarity.”

“There is something each of us can, and must do, every single day for one another. While we may not have the economic means to help others, every one of us has the ability to pray and find a way to be of service.”

“During the Depression, my own family suffered greatly.  Hardest on me, as a six-year old, was the loss of our home in a terrible flood. I still recall my father’s assurance to us that everything would be all right, that we were all together and safe in God’s hands.”