July 1, 2015
To the Faithful of the Diocese of Winona: Commit to Faith in Christ Jesus and Our Daily Relationships
Last week on June 26, 2015 the Supreme Court of the United States of America announced, that same sex marriage is legal in every state. This decision has far reaching consequences for our culture and is very divisive and disappointing. The Church however, will continue to teach and uphold the definition of marriage as the union of one man and one woman for the procreation and raising of children. At the same time, the Church will always welcome and reach out to those who are same sex attracted.
In St. Paul’s letter to the Romans 12:12, he reminds the people “to rejoice in hope”, because the victory of Christ over sin and death is definitive and cannot be reversed. Our hope for a future, that is rooted in God’s plan for creation and redemption will one day be accomplished.
The Diocese of Winona stands in solidarity with Catholic dioceses across the United States as well as the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). As Archbishop Joseph Kurtz, president of the USCCB, stated, “I encourage Catholics to move forward with faith, hope, and love: faith in the unchanging truth about marriage, rooted in the immutable nature of the human person and confirmed by divine revelation; hope that these truths will once again prevail in our society, not only by their logic, but by their great beauty and manifest service to the common good; and love for all our neighbors, even those who hate us or would punish us for our faith and moral convictions.”
I would extend that encouragement to all faithful of the Diocese of Winona to live our faith in hope and love our spouses, children, brothers, sisters, and, our friends who have become much like family; and love especially to those who disagree with us.
Be not afraid, dear brothers and sisters in the Lord, Christ has overcome the world (John 16:33). We are called to be holy, set apart for God in our daily lives. Love without hesitation regardless of another’s treatment of you or our faith. And as is my bishop’s motto, we must continue to rejoice in hope! for we are united in Christ. May God bless you and may God bless America!
Most Reverend John M. Quinn
Bishop of Winona