Parish Ideas for Celebrating Fortnight for Freedom

The Bishops of the United States have called all the faithful to celebrate a Fortnight for Freedom from June 21 to July 4, 2013. This 14-day period will be in celebration of the many rights we enjoy as American citizens and to patriotically pray for our nation.Here are 14 ways your parish could celebrate the Fortnight for Freedom:

(PDF Version)

1.   Celebrate a memorial Mass for SS. Thomas More and John Fisher on June 21 (vigil) or June 22 (their feast day) to open the Fortnight for Freedom.

2.  Present a Catholic movie night for members of your parish, such as A Man for All Seasons about the martyrdom of St. Thomas More or For Greater Glory about the struggle for religious freedom in Mexico.

3.   Invite a local or national figure to speak to your parish about religious liberty.Alternatively, encourage parishioners to read Our First, Most Cherished Liberty, a document of the Bishops’ Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty.

4.   Host a concert with religious music and/or performing artists.

5.   Plan a “Pancakes for Patriotism” or “Fish Fry for Freedom” event to raise awareness about the Fortnight and featuring information about the plans within the parish and diocese for the Fortnight.

6.   Organize day-long (or multi-day) Eucharistic Adoration.

7.   Sponsor a presentation on the history of Catholicism in the United States.

8.   Host a study group on Dignitatis Humanae, the groundbreaking document from the Second Vatican Council on religious liberty, using the 14-day reflection piece found at Fortnight4Freedom.org.

9.   Lead a Eucharistic Procession through your community on a path that passes important government or civic buildings.

10. Host a panel discussion on important public policy issues to individuals of faith.

11. Sponsor a day of service within the community, perhaps at a town or city park, to help clean up trash or conduct routine maintenance.

12. Pray a daily rosary in your parish for the cause of religious liberty each day of the Fortnight.

13. Host a patriotic sing-a-long for the children of the parish and community.

14. Organize an Independence Day family picnic with a special mass to close the Fortnight for Freedom.