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For the online version of our Latest Updates newsletter, click here.

Fighting the Drug Epidemic in Ohio – Ideas in Motion. On February 14, 2017, the Ohio Attorney General will host a community conference on best practices to respond to the Drug Epidemic in Ohio. The conference includes a special clergy break-out session.  Ideas in Motion will be held at Fellowship Baptist Church, 4701 Winchester Pike, Columbus. To register, visit

40 Days for Life is March 1 to April 9. Faithful believers are praying that this effort will mark the beginning of the end of abortion in America. This peaceful prayer vigil will take place at an abortion facility in Columbus.  Participants are asked to volunteer for one-hour shifts and sign a statement of peace. For details, visit

Christmas Catholic Charities Collection  
This annual collection allows the diocese to meet a variety of basic needs directly and through diocesan agencies and organizations including J.O.I.N. (Joint Organization for Inner-City Needs), St. Stephen’s Community House, Catholic Social Services, St. Francis Center, St. Lawrence Haven, St. Vincent Family Center, and the Society of St. Vincent de Paul. You can help share in this important work by generously supporting the Catholic Charities collection this year. 

Catholic Charities Christmas Help  
For a flyer listing ways to help people in need this Christmas by supporting our diocesan sponsored Catholic charities, please visit    

Poverty Awareness Month (January) Materials  
USCCB’s Poverty Awareness Month materials include an online and print calendar with daily ways to learn about poverty, get inspired by how communities are responding, and take action with others.  You can also sign up for daily reflections. For these and other resources go to or contact the diocesan Office for Social Concerns at 614-241-2540.

World Day of Peace
“Non-Violence:  A Style of politics for peace” is Pope Francis’ World day of peace message.  In his message for the 50th World Day of Peace (January 1st), Pope Francis will urge families, faith communities, government leaders, and the international community to practice nonviolence and work to build a just peace.  Gospel nonviolence is not passive; it entails active strategies such as peacebuilding, conflict transformation, restorative justice, and unarmed civilization protection.  Seeking a just peace means preventing conflict by addressing its causes, building relationships, and facilitating healing and restoration.  For the Holy Father’s message and a two-page handout, visit when resources become available or contact the diocesan Office for Social Concerns at (614-241-2540

National Migration Week
“Creating a Culture of Encounter” is the theme for National Migration Week 2017 National Migration Week, January 8-14, 2017, is an opportunity for the Catholic Church to reflect on the circumstances confronting migrants, including immigrants, refugees, children, and victims and survivors of human trafficking.  The theme for NMW 2017 draws attention to Pope Francis’ call to create a culture of encounter, and in doing so to look beyond our own needs and wants to those of others around us.  In the homily given at his first Pentecost as pope, he emphasized the importance of encounter in the Christian faith:  “For me the word is very important.  Encounter with others.  Why?  Because faith is an encounter with Jesus, and we must do what Jesus does:  encounter others.” Online toolkit of resources for parishes and schools, go to  or contact the diocesan Office for Social Concerns at 614-241-2540.   

Stand Against Violence WEEK
January 15-22.  In 1994, the U.S. Catholic Bishops issued a pastoral letter entitled “Confronting a Culture of Violence:  A Catholic Framework for Action.”  As a response to the pastoral letter, parishes and dioceses across the United States are called to focus on peacemaking and policy efforts against violence from January 15, the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and January 22, the anniversary of the tragic Roe v. Wade decision legalizing the violence of abortion.  To read the U.S. Bishops’ statement go to

9 Days for Life 
Join thousands of Catholics across the country coming together in prayer during the bishops' pro-life novena, 9 Days for Life, from Saturday, January 21 - Sunday, January 29. Participate through email, text message, Facebook, or a free iOS or Android app!

Respect Life Mass
January 23 – day of prayer for the legal protection of unborn children  The annual Respect Life Mass will be held on Monday, January 23, 2017, 10:30 a.m. at St. Joseph Cathedral, 212 E. Broad Street, Columbus.  Bishop Frederick Campbell celebrant.  Since January 22nd, the anniversary of the United States Supreme Court decision Roe v. Wade, falls on a Sunday, our diocese will join all of the dioceses of the United States in observing a Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children on Monday, January 23rd. All are invited to attend.  For more information about the Church’s teaching on pro-life issues, visit the U.S. Bishops’ website at or contact the diocesan Office for Social Concerns at 614-241-2540.

Roe Remembrance at Ohio Statehouse
January 23  Greater Columbus Right to Life will sponsor the annual Roe Remembrance event on Monday, January 23 - Noon to 1 p.m., at the Ohio Statehouse following the 10:30 a.m. Respect Life Mass at St. Joseph Cathedral. The program will be held in the Statehouse Atrium. Please allow extra time for new Statehouse security measures. Stickers, signs, and weapons are not permitted inside the Statehouse. For additional information, please visit Greater Columbus Right to Life online at  

National Prayer Vigil for Life  
For those planning on traveling to Washington, DC, for the March for Life, the annual National Prayer Vigil for Life at the Basilica of the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception will be the night before, Thursday, January 26, 2017.  For details visit,  

March for Life & Washington Events
The annual March for Life's date is shifted a to Friday, January 27, 2017, due to the Presidential Inauguration being the week before. In addition to the March for Life, thousands will participate in other gatherings in the DC area. For a Listing of Washington, DC, area events,

Advocacy Issues Briefing Webinar 
Plan to join USCCB on February 7, 2017 at 2:00 p.m. for a special Advocacy Issues Briefing Webinar. The briefing and advocacy resources will prepare us to take our issues of concern to our U.S. Senators and Representatives in their home district offices during the Congressional Recess week of February 20-24, 2017.  More information to come.

CRS Rice Bowl 
Catholic Relief Services’ Rice Bowl is a Lenten faith formation program for use in parishes, schools, religious education programs and by families and individuals in the home.  Using CRS Rice Bowl materials, participants prepare to celebrate Christ’s resurrection by reflecting and acting on His mission of love for those in need.  Pray together; give things up, or fast in solidarity with those who hunger; learn about our global community and the challenges of hunger and poverty around the world; and give sacrificial donations to those in need.  CRS Rice Bowl ensures that the Catholic community of the United States is present in nearly 100 countries worldwide, serving the poorest among us through CRS.  For more information, contact the diocesan Office for Social Concerns at (614) 241-2540 or or visit the CRS website at

Spirit of hope GALA of Catholic Social Services
Saturday, March 11, 2017, 6:30 p.m. at the Hilton Columbus Downtown, 401 N. High Street, Columbus.  The annual event benefits Catholic Social Services’ fourteen programs designed to strengthen individuals and families, provide crisis relief, and help seniors age with grace and independence in the 23 counties of Central and Southern Ohio.  To purchase tickets, call (614) 221-5891 or visit

The Vocation of Agriculture:  To Till & Keep God’s Creation
Saturday, March 25, 2017, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at St. Joseph Church Parish Hall, 670 W. Main St., Plain City, Ohio.  Please join with Catholic rural leaders throughout Ohio as we dialogue and reflect upon the important vocation – call – of being a farmer.  We will examine the many blessings and challenges that face life on the land.  Panelists from the fields of faith formation, agribusiness, environment, and public policy.  If interested in attending, contact the diocesan Office for Social Concerns at 614-241-2540 or

Good Friday Walking Stations of the Cross 
Many facets of faith and justice will be the focus of the annual Walking Stations of the Cross.  The walk begins with opening prayer at St. Joseph Cathedral, 212 E. Broad St., Columbus, at 8 a.m., Friday, April 14, 2017.  Hundreds of participants from across the diocese will process to locations throughout downtown Columbus to recognize Jesus Christ’s suffering and crucifixion as well as to reflect on current areas of social concern.  Open to all ages.  For more information, contact the diocesan Office for Social Concerns at (614) 241-2540 or the Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministry at (614) 241-2565.

Action Alerts

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