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US bishops encouraged to address racial tensions

November 15, 2016

Racial tensions and “post-election uncertainty” are dividing the American people, Archbishop Wilton Gregory of Atlanta told the US bishops during their meeting in Baltimore this week.

Archbishop Gregory delivered the report of a task force organized earlier this year to respond to racial tensions sparked by rioting and police shootings. He said that these tensions have been aggravated by the results of the recent elections, pointing to the rioting in several cities. “It’s the hope of the task force, of people of goodwill, that the demonstrations don’t turn violent,” he said—although violence has already been widespread.

Archbishop Gregory’s task force recommended a day of prayer for peace in communities. It also suggested working with other religious communities to promote dialogue, and programs based in dioceses and parishes to encourage civility. The archbishop said that the bishops’ conference should explore ways of helping communities harmed by violence. He also suggested the preparation of a document on racism.


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  • Posted by: Randal Mandock - Nov. 19, 2016 8:06 PM ET USA

    Eight years of racial aggravation and negative activism are the leading cause of the political division of people in the U.S. today. The professional fomentation of violence under the guise of "protests" and "demonstrations" is the result of this manufactured division. I have taught at an HBCU during these 8 years and have witnessed firsthand the agitation imposed by political & clerical figures on the students: unveiled threats, defamatory inferences to incite peer pressure, racial denigration.

  • Posted by: jalsardl5053 - Nov. 16, 2016 7:37 PM ET USA

    What nonsense! It's pretty rare to hear anything from a prelate about the political or, nowadays, even the scientific, arena that doesn't betray a total lack of knowledge and doesn't represent anything more than an agenda. News flash to the archbishop: America is being divided by an increasingly belligerent left who, having no religion, make politics their religion and have nothing but a my way or hiway attitude. P.S. agree with ALC comments too.

  • Posted by: nix898049 - Nov. 15, 2016 6:00 PM ET USA

    Bravo, Archbishop Gregory! Dialogue, programs and a strongly worded document. There, I fixed it. Wonder why no one's thought of this approach before.

  • Posted by: ALC - Nov. 15, 2016 5:18 PM ET USA

    The riots going on now have nothing to do with racism and all to do with breaking the law and looting/rioting. All of the protests mentioned by the Archbishop are politically motivated. Racism is not the issue. Every person in this country has opportunities. None are denied that. What they do with it is up to them. I am tired of the Catholic Church in America always being on the wrong side of issues and trying to tell law abiding citizens that it's our fault and we are uncharitable.