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2017 Parish Visits
JUNE 22, 2017 — For the third consecutive summer, the Conference staff has hit the road, visiting parishes in search of parish legislative ambassadors and meeting with pastors and parish leaders throughout the state in an effort to review the key issues that will be coming up the following year. To date, our outreach has reached parishes in nearly half of the 47 districts in Maryland.
The first trip of 2017 took us to Jesus the Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Owings on June 13. Led by pastor Fr. Michael King, the parish has been serving 1,400 registered families in north Calvert County since 1983. Father John Dakes of Jesus the Divine Word in Huntingtown also joined us.
With more than one million Catholics in Maryland, the Conference believes it is critical that we do all we can to ensure Catholics are informed and actively engaged, communicating with lawmakers on the issues critical to the Church. To learn more about the project or to volunteer, please CLICK HERE.
In Memory of Cardinal William H. Keeler
MARCH 23, 2017 — The staff of the Maryland Catholic Conference were saddened to learn today (March 23, 2017) of the passing of William Cardinal Keeler, who served as the Conference's chairman throughout his tenure as Archbishop of Baltimore. Read the Conference's full statement on the passing of Cardinal Keeler HERE.
Keeler, the 14th archbishop of Baltimore, an international leader in Catholic-Jewish relations and the driving force behind the restoration of America’s first cathedral, died March 23 at his residence at St. Martin's Home for the Aged in Catonsville. He was 86. Read more...
Visit the memorial page for Cardinal Keeler to learn about his international leadership in Catholic-Jewish interfatith relations, view funeral details, read the statement from Archbishop William Lori, and more.
2017 Nonpublic Schools Advocacy Day
MARCH 2, 2017 — More than 1,300 nonpublic school students filled Lawyers Mall and the House and Senate Office buildings on March 2 for Nonpublic Schools Advocacy Day. The students visisted with their lawmakers to advocate for increased funding for their schools, rallied and got to take selfies with Governor Hogan. In his fiscal 2018 budget, Hogan proposed expanding the BOOST (Broadening Options and Opportunities for Students Today) Scholarship program from $5 million to $7 million. In its first year, BOOST helped nearly 2,500 low-income students attend the school best fit for them.
Catholics in Annapolis
FEBRUARY 15, 2017 — The Maryland Catholic Conference held our 33rd annual Catholics in Annapolis (formerly Lobby Night) on Feb. 15. Hundreds of Catholics from across the state joined us to advocate on behalf of the Church this session. Your voices are critical to our efforts as we work to represent the views of the three (arch)diocese in Maryland on legislation and we are grateful for everyone who attended.
Executive Order on Immigration
FEBRUARY 2017 — President Donald Trump issued an Executive Order in January that suspended for 120 days the entry into the United States of foreign nationals from Syria, Iraq, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen. It also reduced the number of refugees to be admitted to the United States, indefinitely suspending the resettlement of Syrian refugees, and called for stricter vetting and review procedures for people in these populations. In the United States, the Catholic Church was founded by immigrant communities who have always found a home in their local parish. Today, the Church in Maryland continues to welcome and embrace newcomers to our country, and to advocate on their behalf.
Our leaders of the Archdiocese of Washington, the Archdiocese of Baltimore and the Diocese of Wilmington have all issued statements on the Executive Order. Read each one below:
Additional Coverage of the Church's position on this issue:
Bishop Vasquez, chairman of the U.S. Council of Catholic Bishop's committe on migration, welcomes federal appeals court ruling on refugee ban
Katharina Acosta to serve on National Advisory Council of the USCCB
FEBRUARY 3, 2017 — Katharina Acosta, the Latino Outreach Coordinator for the Maryland Catholic Conference, has been appointed to a four-year term with the National Advisory Council (NAC) of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. Archdiocese of Baltimore Archbishop William Lori nominated Acosta to represent Region IV as an at-large member. Her term concludes November 2020. The NAC meets every March and September.
Each Friday during the Legislative Session and monthly throughout the rest of the year, the Maryland Catholic Conference publishes "The Catholic Voice," an e-letter to keep you informed of our work.
Read past editions below.