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Catholic Culture Overview
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South African bishops issue pastoral letter on racism

March 16, 2016

Citing “the violence of centuries of colonialism and the violent decades of apartheid,” the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference has issued a pastoral letter on racism.

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“We need to have a candid conversation on racism and its manifestations in order to adequately and seriously address racism and racial divisions in our country,” wrote Archbishop Stephen Brislin of Cape Town, the conference’s president.

“We realize that this is not an easy conversation, one that many of us may prefer to avoid,” he continued, as he called for prayer and discussion. “Our invitation to such a dialogue may in itself evoke a range of emotions, including self-justification and self-righteous feelings; or, guilt and denial; on the other hand, feelings of anger and sadness. Dialogue, rational and respectful, is necessary so that we open ourselves to receive God’s healing.”


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