Statement by Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone Calls for Ending Violence Against Asian-Americans
“The rise in violence against Asian people across the country is alarming and horrific to all people of right reason. Even their elders, among the most respected individuals in Asian society, have been targeted and attacked. All the more disturbing are the brutal assaults that have been perpetrated against Asian-Americans here in San Francisco in recent days. This is not San Francisco! On the contrary, our city has always been an epicenter of Asian-American culture, with recurring waves of Chinese, Filipino, Korean, Vietnamese, Japanese, South Asian, and other immigrants overcoming discrimination and hardship to contribute to the rich tapestry of this city’s life.
“In our own Catholic community we are blessed to be enriched by many vibrant Asian communities, which bring much vitality to our people’s faith lives. As Catholics, we also belong to a global faith community that is the most diverse and multicultural institution in the world; and as Americans, we have a responsibility on the global stage to show respect for all people, affirming their human dignity. We must, then, lead by example in working toward the much spoken-of but ever elusive unity that is so needed and desired in our society right now.
“Therefore, this coming April 10, the Saturday after Easter, the Archdiocese will hold an Easter Peace Prayer Service at St. Mary’s Cathedral at 3:00 pm, where we will pray for an end to violence and racism particularly against Asians, for healing for our nation, and for the flourishing of peace and justice in our land. The necessary COVID safety protocols will be strictly observed.
“We invite people of all faiths (and none) to join us. For those interested, the rosary will be prayed on the Cathedral plaza beforehand, beginning at 2:30 pm.
“Let us show our care for one another, and for this city we all love.”
Fr. Peter Zhai, Director of Chinese Ministry, who is organizing the April 10 prayer service, adds:
“Speaking as the director for San Francisco’s Chinese Catholic community, we welcome this call to pray together for unity and peace and end to violence and racism. Our faith is strong and gives us hope we can stand together with all San Franciscans of good will for a better future.”
“Filipinos have been very concerned about the rising violence in the city and the attack on Asian elders in particular. We applaud Archbishop Cordileone’s call for a prayer service where the diverse Catholic community can come together to pray for healing for all San Francisco,” said Edgar Estonina, President of the Filipino Ministry Consultative Board.
“A rising tide of hatred must be met with a stronger swelling of love and prayer. The Latinos of the community of the Archdiocese of San Francisco look forward to joining with San Francisco Catholics to support our Archbishop in prayer for peace and unity in this city that we love.” Father Moisés Agudo, Vicar for Hispanics.
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